By OLUSHOLA BELLO
HEINEKEN has announced the measures it has been taking since the beginning of the COVID -19 outbreak to support the health and livelihood of employees and communities in which it operates, and announces it is donating to the Red Cross to support the most vulnerable.
“Our thoughts are with all those affected by Covid-19 and the people working tirelessly to care for them. In this unprecedented situation, at HEINEKEN we have been following from the start of the outbreak three guiding principles: First, the health, safety and trust of our people is of paramount importance. Second, we do everything we can to safeguard the continuity of our business and appeal of our brands, which includes supporting the business continuity of our customers and suppliers. And, third, through our local initiatives, we offer our support to the communities who are most impacted by the pandemic”, commented Jean-François van Boxmeer, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO.
In order to support the health and safety of its employees, the company is ensuring that those employees, who work in production and distribution, follow strict hygiene and social distancing guidelines and receive support to do their jobs safely. Furthermore, to provide security to its employees, HEINEKEN commits until the end of 2020, it will not carry out structural layoffs, as a consequence of COVID-19.
Also, for its customers, HEINEKEN is scaling up initiatives in support of on-trade customers across markets in all regions and for its suppliers, HEINEKEN is committed to paying suppliers at agreed payment terms and will support its most vulnerable small and medium sized suppliers through early payments.
The company also is deploying multiple local initiatives across its global operations in support of those who are at the front line of the COVID-19 fight. These include the donation of water and non-alcoholic beverages, the production of hand sanitisers and monetary contributions to front line medical facilities.
HEINEKEN further recognises that the humanitarian community is in need of additional support by responding to the March 26 international appeal of the Red Cross, HEINEKEN is donating €15 million to support the International Federation of Red Cross relief efforts for the most vulnerable people affected by Covid-19, in particular in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Jean-François van Boxmeer, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO, commented: “For over 100 years the Red Cross has worked tirelessly to save lives around the world. Now more than ever, we want to offer them our support in the work they do to help the most vulnerable beat COVID 19.”