By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Nigeria’s foremost total beverage alcohol company, Guinness Nigeria Plc, has released its Sustainability Report for 2016, reporting its performance on various aspects of its operations, while outlining its sustainability targets for the future.
The report was unveiled in Lagos on Wednesday, February 15, 2017, at a formal ceremony attended by various stakeholder groups and partners such as the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), The Lagos Business School, Water Aid, Institute for Industrial technology (IIT) and Diageo’s Global Sustainable Development Director, David Croft amongst others.
The Sustainability report, titled, Sustainability: From Grain to Glass, is an 87 paged report that covers “our performance in the reporting year July to June, 2016, and focuses on material issues critical to the sustainability of our business.
“We consider an issue material if it could potentially have a significant impact on our business performance or our business leadership position. The report also captures the strategy we will be leveraging to achieve the Sustainable Development goals we have set out to attain,” excerpts from the report stated.
It further added, “Every year, we set ourselves stretching targets that will guide us as we work to reduce our negative impact on the environment.
“We also strive to increase our positive social impact by delivering transformational social investments in communities where we operate. This report captures our achievements in the 2016 financial year.”
Managing Director/CEO of Guinness Nigeria Plc, Mr Peter Ndegwa noted that the overarching ambition of the company is to become the best performing, most trusted and respected consumer Products Company in the world.
He further observed that the attainment of this goal will be futile if a commitment to society is not at the heart of the business.
“The Sustainability Report we are here to launch today is one of the ways we measure our progress against the sustainability and responsibility targets we have set for our organization.
“The report also serves as an expression of our continuing commitment to embedding sustainability into our daily interactions and operations,” he said.
Mr Ndegwa said Guinness remains committed to helping Nigeria meet her Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) targets, especially in the area of providing access to water and sanitation for the majority of the people. In this regard, the company has made significant investments, he disclosed.
Mr David Croft, Global Sustainable Development Director, Diageo Plc said: “Overall we are proud of the progress made. Guinness Nigeria’s Sustainable Development strategy which aligns with Diageo’s global strategy is underpinned by three main pillars: Leadership in alcohol in society, building thriving communities and reducing environmental impact. Delivering on these goals is an integral part of our long term business strategy and our commitment to making a real difference in communities where we operate.”
Major highlights from the 2016 report include notable social investments in the Guinness Eye Hospitals, the flagship Water of Life scheme and the Undergraduate Scholarship scheme, which has opened doors of opportunity to many young Nigerians.
Guinness Nigeria also continued to make notable economic impact in Nigeria. In the 2016 financial year, the company paid over N16 billion in taxes ranging from VAT, employee taxes, Corporate Income Tax, Excise Duties and other taxes
Moving forward, the company outlined strategic objectives the attainment of which will put it in better stead to serve its key stakeholders as well as help to strengthen corporate reputation and build a sustainable business.
In the area of business performance, the company aims to optimize return on investment for its investors and shareholders through good corporate governance and by implementing the plans that underpin its performance ambition. Product quality will be sustained through unwavering commitment to providing consumers with beverages that meet the highest standard of quality.
In the area of innovation, the company said it will continue to leverage on its world class innovation platforms to create high quality products for our consumers, while maintaining an enabling work environment for its employees. In the area of environmental performance, the company said it remains committed to ensuring that its products, processes and operations are safe for the environment.
Its corporate social investment will remain focused on impacting lives positively while enhancing the wellbeing of host communities. The company will continue to sustain initiatives that promote responsible consumption of alcohol and prevent underage drinking and also ensure strict adherence to the principles of responsible marketing of its beverage brands.
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