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Opportunity Details

Senior Category Manager

Posted: 2018-02-20
United Kingdom, Luton, Porter T
About the role:
At the heart of our dynamic global growth is a simple belief: nothing should come between incredibly talented people and an accelerated career.

That’s why we dream big. Why we look to the future, not the past. Why we value talent over title. And why we hire people that can be better than ourselves.

At AB InBev you’ll join a driven team that shares your desire to grow, your courage to challenge and commitment to act. In return, we’ll reward your achievements.

The opportunity is here. Make it yours!

Purpose of the job

The key aim of this role is to work in partnership with Sainsbury’s and Coop, driving improvements for the Beer & Cider category, that benefit the Shopper, the Customer and AB InBev.

In a complex, fast paced and highly competitive UK Off Trade it is vital we have an in-depth understanding of the category, how it is performing, how our brands can leverage opportunities for growth. It is also critical that we support our key customers from a category perspective, engaging cross functionally to build collaborative strategies that align with our commercial priorities and support growth. As a Category Manager you will be responsible for developing and owning the Category Management agenda with relevant customers and customising & implementing our Category Vision, drivers and tactics. This will drive category growth for our customers and for ABI brands within our customers.

Principal accountabilities

Data to Insights
  • Advanced user of Microsoft Excel with the creative ability to turn complex data sets into actionable insights that are engaging for internal and external stakeholders.
  • Comfortable with continuous data sources including IRI / Nielsen, Kantar WorldPanel, etc
  • Leverage latest Shopper Research to create interesting and actionable insights.
  • Present insights to customers and commercial teams in a creative and engaging way that drives collaborative thinking and leads to tangible action to drive category growth.

Building Partnerships
  • Ability to create great customer relationships across a range of key personnel  (buying, category development, merchandising, marketing, shopper insights).
  • Develop relationships based on trust and a genuine desire to drive the customers’ business forward.
  • Become the go to contact when the customer is looking for advice or to evaluate in store performance.
  • Collaborate with customer to develop mutually beneficial category plans.
  • To work with key account team to develop account plans and identify initiatives that that drive sustainable top line growth.

Thought Leadership
  • Must be an strategic thinker and have the credibility and gravitas to put constructive challenge into both customers and internal sales teams.
  • Deliver the market/shopper insight required to drive the Beer & Cider category forward for benefit of the shopper, the retailer & AB InBev.
  • Develop and deliver a plan for the beer & cider category that supports the 12 month commercial plan  

Support for Sales
  • Create and maintain key reporting tools for weekly category sales, shelf space, distribution & sale of sale, secondary displays, promotional effectiveness. Feed into Commercial Achievement Dashboard.
  • Maintain clear & aligned communications with Business Unit Director and Account Manager
  • Analyse and interpret trends from Category, Shopper and Commercial data to identify category growth, brand and distribution opportunities and risks.
  • Robust & replicable evaluation of activity in store.
  • Deliver industry leading category focused rationale for listings & distribution increases across our product portfolio.

Drive Execution & Growth
  • Lead the execution of the Category Vision and Account Plan to grow ABI and the Beer & Cider category. 
  • Plan, lead and flawlessly execute range updates and range reviews in line ABI & customer objectives & based on robust shopper insight.
  • Support implementation of range and space trials in stores.
  • Execute strategies to maximise range, primary space, location, availability and macro space incorporating all 12 category growth levers including off-fixture space, NPD support, new listings / distribution gains / de-list defence and retail format development.
  • Projects will span across multiple channels: Supermarkets, Convenience and Online.

Cross Functional Projects
  • Work closely with insights, brand, trade marketing and sales teams to identify the right projects to drive growth and pitch ideas to retailers.
  • Provide input into internal innovation process resulting in the development of a customer specific sell in story for innovation and successfully implementation in line with distribution targets
  • Use customer knowledge, brand understanding and category & shopper insights to build & deliver compelling presentations with Marketing, Trade Marketing & Revenue Management colleagues to increase our share of sales.

About the candidate:
Qualifications, Skills and Experience desired in the role
  • Minimum of a 2:1 degree in a relevant discipline/subject area.
  • Result orientated & proven track record of making a difference.
  • Commercial acumen.
  • Relationship building – internally and with customers.
  • Previous FMCG experience preferred.
  • Ability to work cross functionally.
  • Practical experience of category management process & first-hand experience of managing customer relationships.
  • Strategic thinker able to develop clear vision for the category within the channel / customer.
  • Breadth of understanding to appreciate the overall business/commercial context and the role of Category Management within it.
  • Highly analytical and data literate, able to manipulate large & complex datasets to create useful insights that can be used to support growth.
  • Ability to draw relevant insights and conclusions from analysis and identify commercial opportunities and threats that exist for the business at both a strategic and at a tactical level.
  • Excellent communication, presentation & influencing - ability to summarise and communicate complex ideas, analysis and insight  and prepare interest-grabbing ‘to-the-point’ presentations.
  • Understand and evaluate the impact of their category recommendations.
  • Use of  IRI / Nielsen, Kantar  and retailer loyalty card data (Dunnhumby, i2C Self Serve).
  • Good understanding of shopper behaviour & ability to discern and use shopper and consumer insights.

About the Company


We are AB InBev. Committed to driving growth that leads to better living for more people, in more places. Through brands and experiences that bring people together. Through our dedication to brewing the best beer with the best ingredients. And through our commitment to helping farmers, retailers, entrepreneurs and communities grow. We are building a company to last. Not just for a decade, but for the next 100 years. Through our brands and our investment in communities, we will bring more people together, making our company an integral part of our consumers’ lives for generations to come.

Our brewing heritage dates back more than 600 years, spanning continents and generations. From our European roots at the Den Hoorn brewery in Leuven, Belgium; to the pioneering spirit of the Anheuser & Co brewery in St. Louis, US;  and  the creation of the Castle Brewery in South Africa during the Johannesburg gold rush. Now, with operations in over 50 countries, and our brands sold in over 100, we are truly a world leader, and our diverse portfolio of well over 40