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Published: Friday, 1/16/2009

Brewer opts for horsin' around

Anheuser-Busch's iconic Clydesdales will be featured in at least three Super Bowl XLIII advertisements on Feb. 1. Anheuser-Busch's iconic Clydesdales will be featured in at least three Super Bowl XLIII advertisements on Feb. 1.
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ST. LOUIS - Anheuser-Busch's game plan for this year's Super Bowl is simple: more Clydesdales.

The iconic symbols of the St. Louis brewer likely will appear in three of seven spots Anheuser-Busch, maker of Bud Light and Budweiser, has bought during the broadcast of next month's championship football game.

Executives said they couldn't say for certain how many ads would feature the stately horses during Super Bowl XLIII, to air on NBC Feb. 1. But they said this year's ads, which feature comedian Conan O'Brien, will have more Clydesdales than ads during past Super Bowls.

Meanwhile, Denny's restaurant chain will be a first-time advertiser in game. Other ad newcomers include General Electric, Pedigree dog food, and Teleflora. Returnees include Audi, CareerBuilder, Cars.com, Coca-Cola, GoDaddy.com, H&R Block, Hyundai Motor America, Monster.com, and PepsiCo. An estimated average cost for an ad is up to $3 million for 30 seconds.

Ads from Anheuser-Busch are among the most antici-pated during the Super Bowl. The company has a lock on the ads, with exclusive rights in the alcoholic beverage segment through 2012.

This year's ads, company executives said, are using Clydesales more because the horses have come to embody the brewer's more than 150-year heritage. Last year the American brewer was purchased by Belgium-based InBev SA.

The ads feature the Clydesdales in: a romance with a circus horse, a particularly competitive game of fetch, and a portrayal of the history of Clydesdales and how they came to the United States.

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