Pabst Sends Media Account to MDC Partners’ Assembly

The assignment spans Pabst's brand portfolio

Glass bottle showing Pabst Blue Ribbon label
Pabst’s brand portfolio is more than hipster favorite PBR. Getty Images

Pabst Brewing Company, the Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) brewers, has a new media agency partner.

Pabst appointed MDC Partners’ Assembly as its media agency of record, following a review. Assembly will be responsible for integrated media planning and buying, data and media strategy, audience strategy and performance strategy across the Pabst portfolio of brands. In addition to ubiquitous hipster favorite PBR, Pabst’s brand portfolio includes Pacific Northwest staple Rainier, Texas brewing pioneer Lone Star, Stroh’s, Old Style, Stag and Baltimore favorite National Bohemian (better known regionally as Natty Boh) and the Not Your Father’s line which helped kick off the hard soda trend around five years ago.

“Assembly stood out for their ability to use data driven insights to forge stronger cultural connections in the places and with the people that matter,” Pabst svp for marketing, Luke Atkinson, said in a statement. “Our brands have deep American heritage and strong local roots, so finding a media partner that can connect data, cultural contribution and creativity was key.”

Although many of the legacy brands in Pabst’s portfolio (including its flagship, National Bohemian, Lone Star, Rainier and Stroh) trace their roots to the 19th century, more recently Pabst seems to have concentrated around capitalizing on its flagship with product innovations, including a potent seltzer line, a line of hard coffee and whiskey.

“Pabst is a brand with a rich history that is on an innovation tear of late,” Assembly president Michael Fanuele said in a statement. “We’re honored to work with their storied portfolio of brands and stoked to be leading the future of drinking by setting them apart in an increasingly crowded category.”

The news follows Pabst naming 72andSunny as lead creative agency for Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Pabst spent $125,000 on measured media in the first nine months of 2019, according to Kantar Media.

@ErikDOster Erik Oster is an agencies reporter for Adweek.