Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks company, has won the 'Good Corporate Governance' award at the 2012 African Business Awards. The event which is organised by Africa Business magazine and the Commonwealth Business Council (CBC), was held in London on 7 June and attended by more than 300 leaders from government, business and the diplomatic community.
The African Business Awards has, over the last five years, become a prestigious platform to celebrate business excellence and best practice, recognising the leaders and companies that are driving Africa's rapidly transforming economies. Winners have made an outstanding contribution to the development of the continent, the economic empowerment of its citizens and the transformation of Africa's image in international markets.
The Good Corporate Governance award recognises responsible business ethics and practices, transparency and an active policy to tackle corruption.
On receiving the award, Anne McCormick, Corporate Relations Director, Diageo Africa, remarked that, “At the core of Diageo's business and our values is the commitment to being one of the world's most respected companies, with an earned reputation of integrity, fairness and good governance. This is a source of pride for our employees and is core to the long term success and sustainability of our business. As a leading business in Africa, we also believe we have an important role to play in working with other businesses, governments and civil society to build an environment where good governance is understood, expected and celebrated.”
Diageo's comprehensive guidelines for business compliance, controls and ethics are enshrined in a global Code of Business Conduct, which is translated into 19 languages and observed as the minimum standard in all of the 180 countries in which the company operates. In addition to comprehensive training on the Code for all employees, Diageo has initiated a series of 'Pathway of Pride' workshops in its African markets; providing a forum for employees to share experiences, discuss the interpretation of the Code and Diageo policies, and translate it into the day-to-day working environment. Since 2010, all of Diageo's employees based in Africa – more than 5,000 – have participated in the programme.
Diageo's African businesses also lead or actively participate in innovative anti-corruption partnerships and initiatives, sharing best practice with other companies and organisations operating in their markets.
Nick Blazquez, President, Diageo Africa, said “We are committed to building positive relationships with governments and enriching our communities by maintaining the highest international standards of corporate governance and promoting good business practices. We are very proud to have been recognised in this way and I would like to thank all our employees and partners for their efforts in helping build this reputation.”