Anheuser-Busch has ended its relationship with the third-party advertising agency responsible for its partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney, amid backlash and declining sales for Bud Light.
According to the New York Post, Anheuser-Busch confirmed in a letter to its distributors that the ad agency at the heart of the controversial campaign is no longer employed by the company.
This development follows the recent leaves taken by Daniel Blake, a marketing executive for Anheuser-Busch overseeing mainstream brands, and Bud Light Vice President of Marketing Alissa Heinerscheid in late April.
The partnership involved sending a personalized can to Mulvaney, who subsequently made two social media posts featuring the can.
Bud Light sales experienced a significant decline following these posts, with a 21% drop in volume for the week ending April 15, and a 26.1% decrease in sales between April 17 and April 22 compared to the same period a year prior, as reported by Connecticut-based Bump Williams Consulting, a firm specializing in the alcoholic beverage industry.
As the backlash persisted, Anheuser-Busch reportedly offered financial support to its front-line employees and wholesalers who were most impacted by the fallout from the campaign. This includes delivery drivers, independent distributors, and sales representatives, all of whom have been hit hard by the company's financial struggles in the wake of the Mulvaney partnership.
Additionally, Anheuser-Busch sought to mitigate the damage among its conservative consumer base by hiring lobbying firm Origin Advocacy, which has strong GOP connections in Congress.