Complete SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg – World’s 2nd Largest Beer Company

Updated on: Nov 6, 2021

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My name is Aditya Shastri and I have written this case study with the help of my students from the online digital marketing course at IIDE - India's #1 digital marketing institute.

Practical assignments, case studies & simulations from Harvard Business Review helped the students from this course present this analysis.

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In our previous blog, we did an in-depth SWOT analysis of one of the most famous mango drinks, Frooti. Here we will be doing a complete SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg.

It is the 2nd largest beer company in the world and also the world’s most water-efficient brewery company. It has gained a lot of success by marketing its product with the latest marketing techniques which is the use of digital marketing.

As most people are online nowadays it is one of the best marketing strategies that a company can use. If you want to know what is digital marketing and how to use it to your advantage – check out our Free MasterClass on Digital Marketing 101 by the CEO and Founder of IIDE, Karan Shah.

Thus this makes us keen to know how Carlsberg became one of the largest contenders in the industry. So to understand it we will be doing an in-depth SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg. Before heading straight to its SWOT analysis, let us know about Carlsberg as a company, its products, competitors, financials, and more.


About Carlsberg Group

Carlsberg headquarters - SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg | IIDE

Carlsberg Group was founded in 1847 by J.C Jacobsen on a hill in Copenhagen, Denmark, Europe. Today it is one of the oldest brewery brands in the world. Today the Carlsberg group has around 140 beer brands, Carlsberg, Tuborg, Kronenbourg 1664 being a few popular ones. 

Their beers are served in more than 150 markets globally and have created a strong brand image over the years. The vision of Carlsberg is to follow the legacy of J.C. Jacobsen and make sure that his ideas are reflected even today. 

They aim to focus on innovative and high-quality products with a blend of natural sciences. Carlsberg has a strong research laboratory where they focus on developing and improving the quality of their products and are highly focused on achieving perfection in results every day.

Some of Carlsberg’s top competitors include CCU, Asahi Breweries, City Brewing, Mahou-San Miguel Group, Heineken, etc. Even though Carlsberg has faced tough competition it continues to provide the best Danish beer in the world.

Carlsberg entered Indian markets in 2006 and soon became the 3rd best beer brand in the country. The main target group of Carlsberg is the young who enjoy drinking beer occasionally.

Carlsberg Group is currently headed by the CEO Cees ‘t Hart with a revenue of $9.48 billion, who recently announced the company’s mission to cut down carbon emissions, water waste and avoid the use of plastic to meet sustainability targets by 2022.

It had a market capitalization of about $24.2 Billion and a total of about 40,010 employees working under it. Its sales for the year 2020 touched about $9 Billion.

Quick Stats About Carlsberg

Founder J. C. Jacobsen
Year Founded 1847
Origin Denmark
No. of Employees 40,010 (2020)
Company Type Aktieselskab
Market Cap $22.24 Billion (2020)
Annual Revenue $9.1 Billion (2020)
Net Profit $466 Million (2020)


Products of Carlsberg

Carlsberg is one of the most well-known brands in the world. Thus it provides its customers with some of the best drinks. Following are some of Carlsberg’s products:

  • Beers
  • Glasses
  • Party Music Disks
  • Entertainment Events
  • Non-alcoholic Beverages


Close Competitors of Carlsberg

Carlsberg provides its products all over the world thus this increases the number of competitors that it faces. Following are some of the competitors that Carlsberg faces:

  • CCU
  • Asahi Breweries
  • City Brewing
  • Mahou-San Miguel Group
  • Heineken


Now that we know about the company let us start with the SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg.


SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg


Infographics - SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg | IIDE

SWOT analysis is one of the techniques used by every company to recognize their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats they might face. Companies draw a detailed plan and create business strategies based on their SWOT Analysis report.

Let us now learn more about its SWOT Analysis by starting with the Strengths of Carlsberg.

1. Strength of Carlsberg 

In this segment, you will see the positive factors that contribute towards making Carlsberg one of the best beer brands in the world.

  • Loyal customer base – Carlsberg being an old brand has been serving customers for years, each year it has been successful in gaining people’s trust by improving its quality. Therefore its customers have remained loyal and are less likely to switch.
  • Strong net worth – Carlsberg has a net revenue of around 58.54 billion Danish kroner, with almost no losses due to which it can expand its business and grow in new markets.
  • Diverse Portfolio – Carlsberg has around 14 beer brands that offer a variety of 500 different types of beer. Some of the most famous ones are Tuborg Kronenbourg, Somersby cider, Neptun, Baltika, Belgian Grimbergen ,etc. In this way, they try to serve beers according to each one’s preference.
  • Widespread global presence – Carlsberg began in Eastern Europe and slowly expanded towards nations like China, Russia, India, Greece, etc. Today they are successfully working in 140 plus countries.
  • Working towards Sustainable Goals – Carlsberg has been striving on working towards its sustainable goals such as reducing wastage of water, cutting down on carbon emissions, avoiding plastic products to control global warming, and sustaining our planet.


2. Weaknesses of Carlsberg

Weaknesses are the drawbacks that the company needs to focus on. The company needs to take steps to improve its weakness so that competitors may not take advantage of the same. Let us look at the weaknesses of Carlsberg listed below.

  • Increased expenses – Over expenditure have always been a problem for companies. The number of expenses by the company is increasing which results in a decrease in profits every year. Even though they have a high net revenue their profits are falling every year. A reduction in profits may create possibilities of losses in the future.
  • Lack of Research and marketing –  Research and Marketing play an important role in any business. Every company conducts thorough research about its target audience, and mediums to market its products. Due to its high expenses, Carlsberg is lacking in conducting good product research and marketing activities. Even after launching 500 plus beers, their majority revenue is generated from two brands Carlsberg and Tuborg, which shows a lack of research on its product.
  • Lack of Innovative Marketing Strategies – Carlsberg is one of the top beer brands globally and has failed to deliver innovative marketing strategies. The advertisements by Carlsberg have caught many eyes, however, repeating similar advertisements for years has created a negative impact.


3. Opportunities for Carlsberg

In this segment, we will look at the possible opportunities that Carlsberg can use to its benefit.

  • Enter New Markets – Carlsberg can enter new markets because of its brand name and recognition. They should benefit from the increase in purchasing powers of customers.
  • Launch new Products – Carlsberg already having a loyal customer base should think of launching new products like snacks, fruit beverages, desserts, etc. Carlsberg can also consider launching beers that may be low-carb to serve health-conscious customers.
  • Improve its Digital Presence – Being one of the top beer brands in the world, Carlsberg should take the opportunity of the booming digital era and build a stronger relationship with its customers online. Having a strong digital presence creates a lasting impression and attracts new customers.
  • Change in Lifestyle – With the change in lifestyle, many people believe in enjoying life by eating and drinking to the fullest. This can be a great opportunity for the company to reach potential customers and increase sales.


4. Threats for Carlsberg

Even though Carlsberg is a market leader, there are several threats it has to look out for. We have listed some of Carlsberg’s threats below.

  • High Competition – A major threat to Carlsberg can be its competitors, people may prefer to buy local beers that are available at a lesser cost. Many competitors may also launch substitutes that may look and taste like Carlsberg beer.
  • Government Restrictions – With an increase in deaths due to alcohol the government may impose a high amount of tax on alcoholic beverages making them more expensive for customers. Government can also impose limitations on the supply of alcohol.
  • Change in preference – Many customers may prefer switching to other alcoholic beverages like wine and whisky which will lead to a decrease in demand for beers.


Now we have come to an end of the SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg. This study will help Carlsberg to enhance its position in the market by implementing the right strategies based on this study.



On the detailed study of the SWOT Analysis of Carlsberg, we know that it is one of the largest beer companies in the world. It has a loyal customer base and a large global presence. It has opportunities like entering new markets and improving its digital marketing tactics. Even with such positive factors, there are some flaws that stop Carlsberg’s growth.

It lacks proper research on its audience and low marketing strategies. It also faces problems like high competition, government restrictions, and changes in preferences. It can improve its marketing techniques by implementing advanced digital marketing techniques which is very essential for a business during this digital era. If you are interested in learning and upskilling, check out IIDE’s 3 Month Advanced Online Digital Marketing Course to know more.

If you would like to read such detailed analyses of companies, find more such insightful case studies on our IIDE Knowledge portal.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and do share your thoughts on this case study in the comments section below.

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]


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