The initiative, part of the Raising the Bar programme, will help venues in their post-pandemic recovery

Diageo will offer pubs, restaurants, and bars the chance to transform their outdoor sports areas through a £2.4m initiative. The support will be offered through the beverage producer’s Raising the Bar programme, which launched in 2020.

Raising the Bar has since invested £30m and worked with 30,000 outlets to provide targeted equipment, digital training, and practical support to help sites operate during the pandemic.

The new initiative will help sporting-focused venues in their post-pandemic recovery by offering successful outlets the opportunity to maximise their outdoor spaces with awnings, standalone bars, outdoor seating, and more. Such venues have struggled to host guests outdoors over the past 18 months, resulting in their recovery behind the rest of the market.

Catharina von Franck, Diageo’s Commercial Director, On Trade, said: “Pre-pandemic, 54% of consumers in GB watched live sports in the on trade[1] and we anticipate a growing demand for these in-venue sporting moments once more. The Raising the Bar team continue to look at ways to support the on trade and we look forward to seeing how we can help transform those outdoor sporting spaces not only to help businesses, but also to create amazing experiences for consumers.”

The initiative has a £50k cap per venue and allows licensees to apply online by 30 April 2022. Successful outlets will be selected by a non-commercial board from Diageo, with installations taking place in May and June.