Diageo launches $100 million global fund for pubs and bars

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A lock and chain is in place across an entrance to a closed pub after further lockdown restrictions have been eased on June 23, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images)

Diageo has unveiled a $100 million (£81 million) fund as part of a new two-year global programme to help pubs and bars recover from COVID-19 pandemic.

Available from July, ‘Raising the Bar’ programme will support the recovery of major hospitality centres, including London, Edinburgh, Dublin and Belfast, among other global destinations.

“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,” commented Ivan Menezes, Diageo chief executive.

He has also called on the governments to provide long-term recovery packages for the hospitality sector.

The ‘Raising the Bar’ programme will provide targeted support to help pay for the physical equipment needed for outlets to re-open.

In the UK, Diageo will provide initial funding for ‘hygiene kits’ with permanent sanitiser dispense units, medical grade hand sanitiser and a range of personal protection equipment. Pubs and bars will be supported to establish partnerships with online reservations and cashless systems.

Funding will also be provided for setting up mobile bars and outdoor equipment.

Bar owners can now register their interest for the programme via www.diageobaracademy.com globally and www.mydiageo.com in the UK and Ireland.