The Cleveland Browns have won one of 32 games over the past two seasons, defeating only the Chargers back on Dec. 24, 2016. Bud Light perhaps can’t speed up that next win, but the major NFL sponsor wants to help the city celebrate when the time finally comes.
The brewery and its Ohio wholesaler, House of LaRose, are installing 10 “smart” refrigerators—each about 8-foot-tall and holding roughly 200 tall-boy beers—around the city. When the Browns secure that long-awaited victory, the doors will unlock wirelessly, making the contents available to Clevelanders for free.
Several of the “Victory Fridges” will be placed inside the Browns’ home venue, FirstEnergy Stadium, but the rest will be in sports bars and other places where patrons are 21 years or older. A press release noted that the beer will be housed by Bud-E Fridge smart technology. Those fridges—currently available for retail only in California—connect to Wi-Fi and also provide information about temperature and inventory.
“It got more interesting as we started to talk about the smart technology,” Andy Goeler, vice president of marketing for Bud Light, told Cleveland.com. “It was a cool idea to send out a wireless signal—they win, people who are lucky enough to be around can celebrate.”
Some might argue that such a promotion for the hapless Browns is in the spirit of the “Free Beer Tomorrow” sign often hung up at dive bars, promising something that will never come.
Even if or when the Browns do win, fans should hope they don’t wait too long. Bud Light has historically printed a “born on” date on its cans, promising freshness within 110 days. The news release indicated that Bud Light would start installing the fridges on Aug. 14. If they are being stocked with beer at the same time, then Cleveland’s Week 13 game against the Texans on Dec. 2 would be the last one with guaranteed freshness.
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