Campari UK is calling on businesses to put money behind the bar staff this Christmas, following new research which reveals Covid-19 will cost the hospitality industry an estimated £717 million over the festive season.

Campari UK is suggesting businesses donate 5% from their unused Christmas party budgets to hospitality worker relief fund, Shaken Not Broken.

Already, companies including Wavemaker UK, The Craft Gin Club, Spinach Branding, Revolution Bars Group, HT Drinks and entrepreneur, investor and TV Dragon Sarah Willingham have donated to the cause.

The research commissioned for the campaign finds a dramatic 73% drop in the proportion of businesses planning to hold parties in hospitality venues, from seven in ten in 2019 (71%) to just two in ten this year (19%).

Two fifths of British businesses (38%) have completely cancelled or postponed any celebration this year, with 18% downgrading to a virtual event and a further 8% still yet to decide.

With companies ordinarily spending an average of £49.80 per employee on end-of-year celebrations, the ultimate impact on bar staff income and emotional and mental wellbeing could be disastrous.

Recent data from pub and restaurant trade bodies has in fact warned of 750,000 fewer people in jobs in the sector by February 2021 as 72% of employers expect to operate at a loss and be forced out of business.

Such has been the impact of Covid-19 on frontline bar workers’ livelihoods – and lives – throughout the pandemic that Shaken Not Broken was established in April 2020 to offer much-needed help. Founded with an initial £100,000 donation from Campari UK, which has also given on-going support as the crisis has continued, the fund is administered by hospitality charity The Drinks Trust, with donations facilitated by TiPJAR.

A £500 contribution from an unused Christmas party budget would give two struggling hospitality workers financial assistance, mental health and wellbeing support, or an education and training grant to help increase their employment opportunities.
The campaign research also underlines the impact Covid-19 is already having on hospitality staff and the businesses they would serve, even before Christmas party season would ordinarily be underway.

One in four cancellations (23%) are due to the intended venue being closed due to Covid-19 restrictions, with six per cent because the venue has already gone bust. One in five businesses (12%) also report that their office local, so often a key part of company morale and culture, has been forced to closed down permanently because of the pandemic.

Brad Madigan, Managing Director of Campari UK, said: “The unavoidable cancellation of a large number of work Christmas celebrations will place even more financial pressure on the hospitality industry, already struggling under the weight of reduced footfall, curfews and widespread lockdowns.

“Many hospitality venues have cut staff numbers, reduced staff hours considerably or, even worse, not re-opened at all since March – placing hundreds of thousands of staff on furlough or directly into unemployment.

“That’s why we’re calling on the UK business community to donate a small part of what they’ve saved from cancelling this year’s Christmas celebration events to the Shaken Not Broken Fund. We know times are extremely challenging for many, but any donation, however large or small, will make a genuine difference to people’s lives. It really is time to support those in the hospitality industry who would normally be serving us at this time of year.”

Ross Carter, chief executive of The Drinks Trust, said: “We are incredibly thankful to Campari UK for running this fantastic initiative aimed at raising valuable donations for The Drinks Trust and thank you also to all the companies that have already signed up to donate a proportion of their staff party spend for 2020.

“This year has been devastating for the hospitality and drinks industry, and the Trust’s work has been essential in alleviating some of the hardship faced by so many in our industry. Through the Shaken Not Broken Fund, The Drinks Trust managed to reach out to 540 colleagues facing severe hardship, providing them with much-needed support, but far too many are still struggling to make ends meet.

“The impact these funds will have on the lives of our colleagues and friends in the drinks industry is significant, and we would encourage others to follow Campari UK’s lead by donating part of their Christmas party budget towards the Shaken Not Broken Fund and The Drinks Trust’s work.”

Companies can pledge their donation via the Drinks Trust website using Paypal and the reference SHAKEN, or by contacting to request an invoice.