Case | HBS Case Collection | February 2014

Diageo: Innovating for Africa

by David E. Bell, Damien P. McLoughlin and Mary L. Shelman


Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks business, had a long history in Africa starting from its beer brand, Guinness, first exported to Sierra Leone in 1827. By 2013, 13% of Diageo's global revenues were from Africa, up from 9% in 2007. Diageo Africa President Nick Blazquez was considering how to seize the opportunities presented by rising populations and incomes while navigating increased competition and the unique challenges presented by frontier markets. The case describes Diageo's innovation process and two recent product launches developed specially for Africa. It also discusses government relations and the need to develop local production and raw material supply chains.

Keywords: Africa; emerging market; innovation; Agribusiness; beverage industry; Emerging Markets; Innovation Strategy; Marketing; Food and Beverage Industry; Africa;


Bell, David E., Damien P. McLoughlin, and Mary L. Shelman. "Diageo: Innovating for Africa." Harvard Business School Case 514-054, February 2014.