Heineken calls time on Island’s Edge

Dutch brewer Heineken Ireland has decided to take its Island’s Edge stout off the market after just two years. The stout brand was targeted at young consumers aged 18 to 35 in a bid to take share from Diageo’s Guinness. Heineken spent multiple of millions on marketing Island’s Edge with major advertising campaigns and pub promotions. The stout was first launched with a campaign created by Havas using the tagline ‘Unexpectedly Refreshing’.

However, the ads failed to catch the imagination of young drinkers. Heineken’s lead agency, Publicis Dublin, was hired last year to roll out a humorous campaign with the line ‘It’s Better, Less Bitter’ (above), featuring pub goers opening up about their personal foibles. The campaign generated interest and got people talking about the brand. However, the drinks industry reported that in recent months pubs stopped ordering Island’s Edge.


Heineken has two other stout brands in its portfolio, Murphy’s, which it acquired when it bought the Cork brewery in 1983, and Beamish, from the old Beamish & Crawford brewery in Cork, which it bought in 2008. The failure of Island’s Edge to make an impact again reflects Guinness’s dominance in Ireland’s stout market. For its part, Guinness owner Diageo tried – albeit with limited success – to make a strong challenge in the cider market.

Bulmer’s remains ahead of Heineken’s Orchard Thieves and Diageo’s Rockshore Cider.

Heineken leads Ireland’s lager market with an estimated eight per cent share.

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