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Diageo launches global $100m recovery fund for pubs and bars

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Diageo launches global $100m recovery fund for pubs and bars Guinness Coronavirus

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Drinks giant Diageo has launched a $100m (£80m) fund to help pubs and bars across the globe recover from the Coronavirus crisis.

Its Raising the Bar programme will be a two-year initiative designed to give targeted support for hospitality operators struggling to build back their businesses.

The initiative, which will commence next month, includes a $20m community fund – previously announced in the US earlier this month – as well as monetary support to allow businesses to buy physical equipment and hygiene kits, and to help them establish partnerships with online reservations and cashless systems.

The programme was designed following a global survey by Diageo of bar owners to identify what they need to reopen after lockdown. Their top priorities include hygiene measures, digital support and practical equipment to transform how their outlets will work. It will also offer members regular updates on best practice training and resources.

Applicants must demonstrate at least one way they are or plan to ‘raise the bar’ in their community through inclusion and diversity, positive drinking promotions, providing skills training or similar initiatives.

“Pubs and bars sit at the heart of every community,” says Ivan Menezes, Diageo CEO. “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.

"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.”

Earlier this month the company, which owns the Guinness brand, launched a Keg Destruction Programme where it will provide like-for-like replacements for all unbroached kegs of its draught products. Under the program, licensees destroy the beer that they have been unable to sell in accordance  with British Beer & Pub Association guidance  before the empty kegs are collected and returned to Diageo

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