Pubs and bars will be able to tap into the fund announced today (24 June), set up to help support jobs and communities across the world and available to the UK on-trade.
Along with the significant sum, Diageo has also called on governments in countries where hospitality has been affected by the coronavirus to step up and provide long-term recovery packages for the sector.
The fund, which will be channelled through Diageo’s educational ‘Raising the Bar’ initiative, will focus on hospitality sectors in major cities including London.
A poll of sector bosses carried out by Diageo showed pub and bar owners’ top priorities when reopening were hygiene measures, digital support and practical equipment to transform how outlets work in relation to health and safety measures.
Pay for equipment
As a result, the fund will focus on helping outlets pay for the equipment needed to reopen.
For example, Diageo will fund hygiene kits, including sanitiser dispense units, medical grade hand sanitiser and various personal protective equipment including masks and gloves.
The fund will also help pubs and bars create partnerships with online reservation and cashless systems as well as mobile bars and outdoor equipment.
Diageo chief executive Ivan Menezes said in a statement: “Pubs and bars sit at the heart of every community.
“We have launched ‘Raising the Bar’ as so many outlets have been impacted by this crisis and badly need help to open their doors again.
“We are calling on governments around the world to provide long-term recovery packages to help the hospitality sector.”
Menezes continued: “These businesses play an essential role in bringing people together to socialise and celebrate – something that we have all missed so much during this terrible crisis – and sustain hundreds of millions of jobs, which provide a first foot on the employment ladder for young people.”
According to the UN’s International Labour Organisation, 436m businesses globally will face serious disruption as a result of the pandemic, while one in six young people will be unemployed.
The hospitality sector, it continued, would be the hardest hit of all, and with pubs, bars, clubs and restaurants providing millions of full-time and part-time jobs, the damage could be severe.
From 24 June 2020, bar owners will be able to register their interest for the “Raising the Bar” programme via www.diageobaracademy.com globally and www.mydiageo.com in the UK and Ireland. Bar owners will receive regular updates on best practice training and resources and be able to participate in global surveys to share insights, as they build back their businesses.