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Coors Light in Puerto Rico: battling for local dominance in a global market

David J. Allio (David J. Allio is currently the senior vice president of V. Suárez in charge of marketing and strategy ( Formerly an Allio Associates consultant, in 1989 he was hired to assist in the market studies, brand acquisition, and planning for the launch of Coors Light beer in Puerto Rico in 1991, and he has supervised the brand’s marketing since then.)
Robert J. Allio (Robert J. Allio, Principal of Allio Associates, is a strategy consultant, educator, and author of several books on planning, strategic management, and leadership ( He has been a principal Suárez consultant since 1979.)

Strategy & Leadership

ISSN: 1087-8572

Article publication date: 1 December 2002



Even when global players are increasingly dominating an industry, smaller competitors can win in local markets by paying attention to the different needs and expectations of their customers. The top‐down standardization of strategy adopted by many multinational consumer product companies can fail badly if these differences are ignored. Consumer needs and desires are not necessarily consistent across different market segments. Competitors can often exploit these differences to great advantage, particularly if some core competencies, like distribution or market intelligence, can be brought to bear. The old adage “Think global, act local” still applies in many industries. This SuÄrez Company beer case study demonstrates the impact that local market knowledge and positioning can have on a product’s success. Nimble local or regional players may dethrone even the largest of multi‐national or global competitors who often fail to recognize or embrace cultural differences and unique market conditions. These same multinationals may derive global benefits by re‐integrating local market experience into their broader positioning, as Coors is doing now.



Allio, D.J. and Allio, R.J. (2002), "Coors Light in Puerto Rico: battling for local dominance in a global market", Strategy & Leadership, Vol. 30 No. 6, pp. 13-17.




Copyright © 2002, MCB UP Limited

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