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Event Case Study: PD CON 23, The ABinBev Beer Festival

Monday 12th February 2024

Sketch Events were recently tasked with delivering a unique beer festival for world-leading brewer AB InBev, choosing Victoria Warehouse as the destination for this iconic event.

The client: AB InBev

The agency: Sketch

The event space: The Cellars and The Archives

The concept

In collaboration with one of the UK’s best experiential marketing agencies Sketch, AB inBev brought their memorable beer festival ‘PD CON 23’ to Victoria Warehouse. The core focus of the event, which took place on Saturday 4th November 2023, was promoting AB inBev’s latest, at-home PerfectDraft beer pump. The concept revolved around creating a fun and exclusive experience 300 super fans and influencers, allowing them to pour their own pints, explore the upgraded draft machine, and participate in discussions on brewing, beer types, and engaging beer-related games.

The brief

Sketch was briefed with creating an edgy, informal setting for AB inBev’s specialist festival, deciding on a design that replicated a cool, city centre apartment living space. The primary aim of this immersive event was to launch their latest at-home beer pump, encourage product purchases, and provide an exclusive experience for superfans within the PerfectDraft Facebook group.

Facebook fans had previously been given the choice of three different venue options, across three cities, with Manchester’s Victoria Warehouse winning the vote.

The experience

Avid beer lovers were welcomed to the warehouse venue by brand representatives from 4pm, heading into the rustic event spaces, before being given the chance to immerse themselves in an exclusive at-home beer pump experience. Beer fans were given the chance to interact with some of the most iconic UK breweries, including names like Adnams, BrewDog, Hawkstone, Vocation, and Tiny Rebel.

The self-serve bar allowed attendees to explore various beer brands, each with dedicated stands for special tastings. Branded glasses, lanyards, and drink tokens added to the overall experience.

Two distinct rooms offered diverse experiences – one for intimate panel discussions with industry experts, including Master Brewer Micha Peute, and another for street food and the main self-serve bar. A games room with digital dartboards and table football added an interactive and lively touch.

There were plenty of opportunities to find out more about PerfectDraft and its latest updates, with the chance to ask questions and chat directly with the team.

To top it off, the beer festival offered plenty of opportunities to sample various beers, along with a variety of delicious street food, keeping attendees fuelled throughout the night, until 8pm.

Why Victoria Warehouse?

Victoria Warehouse’s laid-back, industrial-themed setting meant the venue aligned seamlessly with the desired living space vibe. The venue’s Cellars and Archives spaces also provided flexibility for separate areas, including panel discussions, self-serve bars, gaming zones, and other activities.

The catering, provided by Victoria Warehouse, included an array of street food options like burgers and burritos. Minimal alterations, such as added signage and potted plants, created a homely feel while maintaining the venue’s inherent cool aesthetic.

Sketch also felt that the Victoria Warehouse team’s vast experience was ideal for delivering such a specific experience. Victoria Warehouse’s Jade was really helpful on the day and was always on hand to help with any issues. Teesha assisted Sketch with the floor plan and feedback, making sure the event was able to operate safely.

The Verdict?

Guest feedback surpassed expectations, with some likening the event to major festivals. Ambassadors from key beer brands commented about the venue’s amazing design, reinforcing Victoria Warehouse’s unique vibe. The combination of brewery engagement and exclusive benefits left attendees with a memorable and positive experience, solidifying the success of ABinBev’s Beer Festival via Sketch.

“Victoria Warehouse is a fantastic, versatile venue. It’s got a really great aesthetic and fantastic facilities. It was perfectly suited for our event. It was a great pleasure working with the VW team on this project, from start to finish. Bethany, Teesha and Jade were all exceptionally helpful, and we look forward to working with them again in the near future.” – Isaac Swaby, Account Director at Sketch Events



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