Diageo's Supplier Diversity Program Fuels Our Success in Our Business ... and Our Community

As Diageo’s Supplier Diversity Program passes its five-year anniversary in North America, we look at how far we’ve come with this program of which we are incredibly proud.

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Our Supplier Diversity Program celebrates its fifth anniversary this June, and in that short time, we have learned that one thing is clear ... Supplier Diversity Is Good Business! Our Supplier Diversity Mission is “To create possibilities with diverse owned suppliers and economic impact in their communities." 

Diageo recognizes that diverse suppliers can often deliver greater agility, as well as access to fresh ideas, experiences and more competitive costthat can result in accelerated product and process innovations. This mindset is one that we actively encourage at Diageo both with our own employees and with the partners and suppliers with whom we work.

““We are proud of the progress we have made in delivering against our vision to create opportunities with diverse suppliers and in their communities. In little more than a half decade, we have grown our program through a dynamic and multifaceted approach, focusing on growing the number of suppliers in our portfolio, growing strategic relationships with them, and building internal visibility and education.””

Perry Jones

President, North America Supply

This has resulted in us doubling our overall spend with economic impact across multiple diverse communities.We've tripled the amount we spend with woman-owned suppliers and doubled our spend with minority-owned businesses. We've also seen an enormous increase in our spend with LGBTQ-owned businesses and businesses owned by veterans.This past year alone, we have already delivered an increase of approximately 30%, despite the challenging backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are delivering end-to-end value across the business including key metrics such as AWC improvement, savings and profit, and innovation delivery, to name a few.

We also encourage broader Inclusion and Diversity commitments across our suppliers and agencies. For example, for the last two years we have asked our advertising agencies to share data on the gender balance within their organizationstheir plans to drive inclusion and diversity, and to improve positive gender (and soon ethic) portrayal in media. We are also, as well as taking a stand on issues through our involvement in collaborative groups such as the World Federation of Advertisers’ Diversity & Inclusion Taskforce and the United Nations Unstereotype Alliance.

These strategic relationships broaden our supply base and help us champion inclusion and diversity within and beyond our business. Diageo will continue to evolve and grow our program in North America and Globally to achieve our ambition, to be “one of the best performing, most trusted and respected consumer products company in the world.”
What has driven this impressive growth?
A clear vision for the future, a profound mission and a robust strategy, combined with commitment and a relentless focus on Winning Through Execution across four strategic pillars:
  1. Communication–The Supplier DiversityChampions and Category Managers worked tirelessly to educate stakeholders and embed this across the business to help bring the Diageo purpose to life.
  2. Advocacy–Engaging stakeholders to ensure that diverse suppliers are at the table to compete for our business, as well as partnering with I&D counterparts to connect our People, Workplace, Partner and Marketplace strategies and ambitions.
  3. Supplier Discovery–Leaving no stone unturned to identify and leverage new diverse owned suppliers across all categories in Marketing, Indirects and Supply!
  4. Supplier Development–Intentional, strategic engagement with existing suppliers for long term growth; tapping into existing supplier capabilities and leveraging opportunities and innovative ideas they have brought to Diageo.

We are proud of this progress and would like to highlight a few key suppliers who are helping us reach this ambition.

Enthuse Experiential Marketing (Women Owned) –Community support from the impact of Covid-19

  • Since 2016 we have partnered with this women-owned experiential marketing consultancy, and they continue to deliver savings and value add initiatives while overachieving against their KPI targets. Enthuse has been instrumental in pivoting Diageo’s on-trade support in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, creating task forces to identify and deliver business solutions, including virtual events that allow re-entry and recovery for our customers. Additionally, Enthuse redeployed members of their team to provide education across distributors and broker networks, as well as support with applications for funds for the United States Bartender Guild.

The Spearhead Group (Woman Owned)–Crown Royal Bags

  • Through this partnership with a woman owned business, The Spearhead Group, Diageo has been able to drive 10% incremental increases of annual diversity spend, and 3% in cost savings in FY20compared to the previous year. Through this relationship, and activation of our supplier failure risk management process, we were able to manage one of our most significant COVID 19 risks seamlessly, with minimal financial impact to the business.

Harris & Ford (African American Owned)Critical Raw Ingredients

  • We have partnered with H&F to consolidate ingredient tail-spend, increase visibility and management in commodities costs, specifically raw ingredients with critical cost drivers. In this partnership, we reduced end to end total supply chain cost and increased diversity spend by 4% annually.

““Having led the launch of Supplier Diversity 5 years ago, I am amazed and extremely proud of our ability to live up to our bold ambitions to double spend and reach 10% of our spend in 5 years. I can recall engaging with each of the suppliers spotlighted in this article. Their value delivery and our joint growth speaks directly to the value of leveraging the full scope and diversity of our supply chain and talent across the board.””

Marsha Mcintosh

Vice President Procurement -North America Supply

As Diageo North America continues to evolve our Supplier Diversity Program, we will continue to seek out and celebrate partners that exemplify and enable us to live our Values of Inclusion and Diversity in service of delivering our Performance Ambition.

Stay tuned for more! If you are interested in learning more about our programreach out to our Supplier Diversity Lead, kimberly.williams@diageo.com.