Wetherspoon in High Court dispute with Budweiser supplier

27 March 2023 by
Wetherspoon in High Court dispute with Budweiser supplier

JD Wetherspoon could stop serving Stella Artois and Budweiser if the pub giant loses a legal dispute against beer supplier AB InBev (ABI).

ABI's UK subsidiary, Budweiser Brewing Group, was appointed as JD Wetherspoon's lead brewer under a 20-year contract sealed in November 2021.

The high court disagreement concerns which company was responsible for carrying out works to meet a contractual requirement for JD Wetherspoon to display a set number of ABI beers, such as Stella Artois and Budweiser, on its pub's T-bars.

While Wetherspoon made claims that both parties believed ABI was responsible, ABI has denied this.

The Times reported that the pub group is seeking a temporary injunction to prevent the "real and substantial threat" of ABI's termination of the contract, should the court rule in favour of the Belgian multinational brewer.

Court documents seen by the Times revealed that ABI had demanded price increases from Wetherspoon last year amid 40 year-high inflation alongside claims the company would have been eligible for damages of £9.9m is the contract had been terminated in late January.

A spokesperson for JD Wetherspoon said: "Wetherspoon is involved in a contractual dispute with AB InBev UK Limited (trading as Budweiser Brewing Group), who supply draught and packaged products, and related services, to the company.

"Unfortunately, the parties were unable to resolve this dispute and therefore Wetherspoon regrettably had no choice but to commence court proceedings.

They added: "We value our commercial relationship with Budweiser and hope that the dispute can be resolved as quickly as possible."

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