MolsonCoors (UK) will no longer be sponsoring the European Beer Bloggers Conference. Sad news.
MolsonCoors was the primary sponsor of both the initial conference last year in London and the conference this year in Leeds. In fact, had MolsonCoors not stepped up for the first one, the conference might never have taken place. Not only did they fund a dinner, they paid for the conference space rental at the posh The Brewery facility. This year, they again funded a dinner but also provided £100 travel stipends for attending bloggers.
The driving force behind MolsonCoor’s involvement was Kristy McCready. Kristy is smart, funny, beer-savvy, social media-savvy, and – apparently – convincing, because she was able to convince the brass at MolsonCoors (UK) to step out on the 10-meter diving platform (to use an Olympics analogy) and support the idea of a “beer blogger conference”.
Make no mistake, MolsonCoors was taking a risk. As a large beer producer, MolsonCoors could easily have been slammed by beer bloggers for a variety of reasons. Instead, they showed their support of bloggers and showcased their best beers, including at this year’s conference a lineup of Sharp’s beers presented by head brewer Stuart Howe.
We at the Beer Bloggers Conference know specifically that MolsonCoors achieved great results with their investment. Like it or not, there is a rift between some beer bloggers and the major beer producers. That rift, in the UK and with MolsonCoors specifically, is now mostly gone. UK beer bloggers recognize MolsonCoors does support them and does produce good beers. So we ask you to continue to give MolsonCoors the credit they deserve for sticking their necks out to support the EBBC when it was just an idea.
But things change, budgets intervene, and marketing shifts happen. In this case, we specifically heard from MolsonCoors they were afraid they had already showed their support for beer bloggers and could not achieve more than they already had. They have elected to discontinue their sponsorship of the EBBC.
That leaves us with the subject of the 2013 conference location. We don’t yet know where it will be and we need your help. Please let us know your suggestions: what beer cities would make a great host for the 2013 European Beer Bloggers Conference? Please keep these factors in mind:
1. The greatest concentration of European beer bloggers is in the UK. So the status quo is to again have the conference in the UK, unless we receive significant support from somewhere else that helps reduce the costs of bloggers to attend.
2. There needs to be a beer culture, with local breweries, bars that have craft beer featured, etc.
3. Ideally, there would be at least half a dozen local beer bloggers who could help with local suggestions and organization.
4. Pilsner Urquell will again step in to sponsor one dinner at the conference but we will be looking for a second dinner sponsor.
5. It helps to have one (or more) local champions. A city that is eager to host is a great host. One where we are having to explain the concept is less likely to be enthusiastic.
So let us know here (or via email) if you have any suggestions. And let us know if you have any thoughts for MolsonCoors. We appreciate their past support!
Beer Sagas says
The Czech Republic is the perfect place for a new beer blogger conference. With Pilsner Urquell already sponsoring a dinner, this is a no gamer the way I see it. The Czech beer scene is really interesting and innovative right now, and the days of only pale lagers available are long gone.
We would love to hold the European Beer Bloggers Conference in the Czech Republic. However, to do so we believe we would need support on the order of what MolsonCoors provided us this year, including potentially scholarships for bloggers or a very discounted hotel rate. Pilsner Urquell declined to throw their weight behind a Czech Republic conference in 2013. We will be announcing the EBBC location shortly … and will continue to work on bringing the conference to the Czech Republic in the future. We could use some local bloggers who want to help make it happen!
What about Manchester, central UK, great transport links, home of IndyMan and a thriving beer scene that goes from strength to strength?
I also think Belgium is a great idea, good transport from across Europe and shed loads of breweries to give the event a different feel.
Newcastle & Sheffield are also great prospects but for me, I think Edinburgh is a little remote for some.
Beers I've Known says
As much as the UK would be ideal, I think a European based conference might attract a different group of bloggers.
I would suggest a Bruges/Brussels based conference. Plenty of beer, plenty of venues, plenty of breweries. In terms of sponsors there are some fairly big players you could try.
Failing that my vote would be for Edinburgh, easy to fly to, great pubs, lots of breweries that could get involved and somewhere that’s not England!
Newcastle, Sheffield, Scotland? Belgium?
You guys *blushes* you missed ‘smoking hot’ but otherwise thank you very very much!
Best of luck finding the right sponsor for 2013, look forward to seeing everyone there!
owen ogletree says
Sheffield would be a perfect location for the conference… great pubs and breweries closeby.