©Springboard: Diageo Learning for Life
Heineken, Budweiser and Diageo are among key beverage companies that have launched new initiatives to support on-trade customers as they face uncertainty amid the coronavirus crisis.
With bars, pubs and restaurants currently closed or restricted around the world, hospitality businesses face unprecedented commercial challenges and even risk permanent closure.
For many beverage companies, hospitality businesses are key to their industry. In support, many have launched initiatives including voucher systems, new digital platforms and free hospitality training.
Through its ‘Back the Bars’ initiative, Heineken is enabling people to buy drinks vouchers for their favourite bar or restaurant which can be redeemed when they are open. The owner of the bar will receive the monetary value of the voucher immediately which enables them to continue to pay their fixed costs.
Heineken’s initiative is currently running in 17 countries with further five countries due to launch. Within the last two months, over 218,000 vouchers have reportedly been sold with over €8.2 million euros going directly to outlets.
Along similar lines, Budweiser Brewing Group UK & I launched Save Pub Life, which encourages the public to buy a gift card now to spend at their local once it re-opens. Open to pubs, bars and restaurants across Great Britain, Budweiser will match the value of the gift card – up to a combined total of £1 million – which will go directly to businesses within two weeks.
Carlsberg UK, meanwhile, has launched a new free digital platform called ‘Love my Local’ that enables pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes across the UK to safely sell food and drink to the local community for take-out and delivery.
In addition, the website – which launched in partnership with CHD Innovation and Fold7 – provides video tutorials and toolkits to help businesses set up trading again and promote their online offering.
Established in 2008, Diageo’s Learning for Life bartending and hospitality programme is now available virtually to unemployed people across the UK for free. The online platform offers over 40 skills modules, help when building a CV and access to 1-2-1 careers advice.
With pubs serving a big part of UK culture, national initiative Mypubshop.com, powered by StarStock, was launched in partnership with local businesses and key players including Budweiser Brewing Group, Coca-Cola European Partners, Brakes and Use Your Local.
The website enables pubs to trade as food and drink shops by taking and processing orders online, transforming them into ‘click and collect havens’.
Since the Covid-19 outbreak, wine, beer and spirits companies have shifted their production to hand sanitiser including Bacardi, Pernod Ricard USA, Amber Beverage Group (ABG) and BrewDog, with more joining every day.
Companies continue to step up their efforts with donations to the hospitality sector among the NHS and those who are vulnerable, while collaborating to deliver resources to healthcare workers and first responders.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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