For the third year, leading beverage maker, International Breweries Plc has emerged as one of the top winners at the Sustainability, Entrepreneurship, and Responsibility (SERAs) CSR Awards with four awards at the 15th edition of the highly acclaimed awards held at the Oriental Hotel in Lagos.
International Breweries Plc, a proud part of Anheuser Busch InBev (AB InBev), the world’s largest brewer with a portfolio of over 400 beer brands clinched the award for Best Company in Circular Economy in recognition of its initiatives in circular packaging, recycling and waste management including spent grain management, recycling of its Returnable Glass Bottles (RGBs), bottles for education campaign and other recycling activities.
The company also bagged the award for Best Company in Poverty Reduction in acknowledgement of its Kickstart Initiative which has produced 1,208 young entrepreneurs, awarded N496 million grants and generated 571 direct and indirect jobs in its six years of existence.
International Breweries was also recognised in the CEO of the Year category where its Managing Director, Hugo Rocha emerged first runner-up for driving the company’s sustainability goals. The company came runner-up in one of the most coveted awards in Africa, the Most Responsible Company in Africa. In all, the giant brewer was nominated in nine categories—an endorsement of its stellar performance.
It will be remembered that International Breweries built Nigeria’s first-ever solar powered brewery plant which also doubles as the largest brewery plant in the Sahara part of the African continent.
The International Breweries team, led by Legal & Corporate Affairs Director, Mrs Temitope Oguntokun, and Brewery Operations Director, Tony Agah received the awards on behalf of the company.
Responding to the nominations and wins, Oguntokun stated that the company remains committed to its consumers and the environment in which it operates.
According to Oguntokun, “As part of the global AB InBev Group, IBPLC introduced the 2025 Sustainability Goals to drive transformational change across its entire value chain. The goal underscores our organisation’s understanding of the importance of a better tomorrow for future generations; it focuses on five pillars of action – Smart Agriculture, Water Stewardship, Circular Packaging, Climate Action and Responsible Drinking – and is hinged on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs).”
For Smart Agriculture, by 2025, 100% of IBPLC’s direct farmers will be skilled, connected and financially empowered because the company supports the livelihoods of its farming communities to farm organically in order to have high-quality crops that will enable it to brew the best beers.
On his part, Agah said, “On the Water Stewardship by 2025, we aim to improve water-use efficiency at our four breweries to reach a 2.7 hl/hl water-to-beer ratio as part of our contribution to SDG 6. On the Circular Packaging by 2025, 100% of our products will be in packaging that is returnable or made from majority recycled content. On Climate Action by 2025, 100% of our purchased electricity will come from renewable sources. We will have a 25% reduction in CO2 emissions across our value chain. On Responsible Drinking by 2025, 20% of our products will be made up of low or no-alcohol beer. We believe alcohol, when consumed in moderation can be part of a well-balanced lifestyle,” Agah added
Over the years, the company’s dream of bringing people together for a better world has seen it being rewarded with awards such as the 2019 Monde Selection: Gold Award; Nigerian Legal Awards 2019: Manufacturing Legal Team of the Year; ADVAN: 2020 Community Heroes Award (for IBPlc’s key role in the distribution of COVID-19 relief palliatives); ADVAN Awards for Marketing Excellence 2021: Budweiser: Winner, Digital Campaign of the Year Hero: 2nd Place, Consumer Promotion of the Year Trophy: 3rd Place, Indigenous Brand of the Year; HR People Magazine Awards: HR Champion 2021;
Others are the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (Lagos Chapter): 2019 LAPRIGA Awards (for Best Company in Environmental Sustainability); ADVAN: 2019 Awards for Marketing Excellence (for Marketing Creativity Award for the HERO Echefula Campaign); SERAS: 2019 Best Company in Clean and Affordable Energy; SERAS: 2020 Best Company in Infrastructure Development (for CSR interventions across Nigeria); FRSC, Sagamu Unit Command: 2020 Outstanding Stakeholder, (for unwavering commitment in promoting responsible drinking among Nigerians).
Speaking on the brands and marketing awards received by the company, the Marketing Director, Tolulope Adedeji, said. “There is no shortcut to satisfying the consumer in the marketplace. If you have great products and services the consumer will let you know so will several awards organising committees, and the public. Our marketing activities are predicated on satisfying our valued consumer with quality products and you can’t go wrong when the consumer is at the centre of everything you do. This is justified by the many brand-related awards International Breweries Plc has to show for the year 2021.”
International Breweries has championed several social investment initiatives such as Kickstart which trained over 500 entrepreneurs. IBPLC repositioned and launched the International Breweries Foundation to manage Corporate Social Responsibility activities. They also built and fully equipped a state-of-the-art primary healthcare facility at Oginigba, Port-Harcourt, Rivers State.
This is not the first time IBPLC will be recognised by the SERA Awards. The company won the SERAS Awards in 2019 for “Best Company in Clean and Affordable Energy”, and SERAS Awards in 2020 for “Best Company in Infrastructure Development (for CSR interventions across Nigeria)”.
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