It is with a heavy heart that we followed the distressing news of the massive blast that rocked the pulsing heart of Lebanon, Beirut. The blast, which is the most powerful ever to rip through the city, has wreaked havoc on humans and businesses alike. Beirut was, indeed, dealt a massive blow, which took its toll on both lives and economy, the latter having been struggling and faltering for some time.
But this is Beirut after all; the city dubbed 'the phoenix that rises from the ashes', and from the ashes and ruins it shall rise yet again!
Those extreme and challenging times have triggered within Diageo an urge to lend a helping hand to Lebanon's on-trade community, as a fundamental step to overcome this tragedy and emerge stronger than ever.
Accordingly, an action plan for immediate delivery of humanitarian and trade/industry aid has been thoroughly studied and carefully put in place, so as to help bring on-trade businesses and staff affected by the explosion back on their feet again. For this aim, Diageo MENA has pledged a budget of USD 500,000 to be paid to on-trade businesses (bars and pubs) located across Beirut's most impacted area.
"We are truly proud to get the opportunity to stand by customers, partners and communities in such difficult times. This is unprecedented and at a scale that further demonstrates Diageo’s leadership and a clear expression of our values and commitment to Lebanon’s hospitality and tourism," said General Manager of Diageo Middle East & North Africa, George Rbeiz.
"Lebanon has always been in our hearts and minds, and this initiative further confirms our position as an established partner to Lebanon’s hospitality and a contributor in the rise of its tourism when it needs us most. Diageo has championed large scale programs to support customers and communities all around the world, the last of which was in support of global on-trade businesses and customers affected by COVID 19," he added.
The allocated funds will go into assisting on-trade outlets and staff in their endeavors towards recovery, and into allowing them the opportunity to shake off the blasts' dreadful impacts and get back to business, for the benefit of Lebanon's hospitality and tourism sectors.