HELPING HAND: The ‘Raising the Bar’ fund will help bars, clubs and pubs around Australia recover from the impacts of Covid-19. Picture: Brian Cassidy
HELPING HAND: The ‘Raising the Bar’ fund will help bars, clubs and pubs around Australia recover from the impacts of Covid-19. Picture: Brian Cassidy

Bundy Rum serving up $11.5m initiative to get pubs pumping

ICONIC local brand Bundaberg Rum has announced a new fund to help out Australia's hospitality industry.

The company has created a $11.5 million fund called 'Raising the Bar' which will support Australia's bars, pubs and clubs to help them rebuild after the Covid-19 pandemic.

The fund will directly support jobs, recovery, and innovation in the Australian hospitality industry.

Before the pandemic hit Australia's hospitality industry employed more than 500,000 and contributed $17.2 billion in revenue.

Any licensed venue in Australia, whether they're regional or metro, and regardless if they're a Bundaberg Rum or Diageo stockist, will be able to apply for support through the initiative which will fund a two-year program rolling out from July 2020.

Angus McPherson, Managing Director at Bundaberg Rum's parent company Diageo Australia, said the hospitality industry sat at the heart of the community and Australian culture.

"The joy of being able to connect with friends and family down at the 'local' has been sorely missed throughout this pandemic, while the economic impact on the industry has been unprecedented," he said.

"Many in the hospitality industry are small businesses that employ thousands across the country and as we start to recover and rebuild, Bundaberg Rum wants to stand by their side and support them in getting back on their feet just like any Australian would do for a mate."

Both Government and industry have come out in support of the fund and how it will help industry that accounts for 8 per cent of Australian jobs, get back on its feet.

Senator and Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business Michaelia Cash said small businesses were the backbone of communities and the economy.

"Seeing the resilience, innovation and spirit among Australian small business operators, including in the hospitality sector, as they have faced the challenges this year has been nothing short of inspiring," she said.

"Businesses and workers in the hospitality industry have shown great ingenuity by innovating and adapting as the devastating effects of Covid-19 have impacted us all."

Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick said the fund was another example of Bundaberg Rum stepping up to help those in need.

He said Bundaberg Rum, through their parent company Diageo, had stepped up for Queensland at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic to donate 100,000 litres of ethanol to produce hand sanitiser to ensure frontline workers were safe.

"Like the Queensland Government, Bundaberg Rum knows how important it is to support and create jobs, and we thank them, once again, for investing in Queensland."

From 24 June 2020, venue operators can register their interest for 'Raising the Bar' funding via www.diageobaracademy.com.


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