As one of the largest employers in Africa, the firm is keen to assist the UK Government over its policies in the continent. These include water conservation to safeguard drinkable water and provision of HIV/Aids drugs and sex education.
The UK government created the Commission for Africa in February, chaired by Tony Blair to support and encourage ‘the best of existing work’ across a range of issues. In addition, the UK will hold the presidencies of both the G8 and the EU during 2005, and the Government has said it will put Africa high on both agendas.
Aside from Africa, Politics International will be charged with fleshing out SABMiller’s approach to responsible drinking.
The hire was made by SABMiller director of corporate affairs Sue Clark. ‘SABMiller is a large UK company – number 35 in the FTSE 100 – and we believe that it is timely for us to raise our profile among political stakeholders. As a major employer in Africa, we can assist the government and the Commission,’ she said.
SABMiller has a brewing presence in more than 40 countries including 12 sub-Saharan African nations. Its HQ is in London. The company was formed in 2002 as a result of South African Breweries’ purchase of Miller Brewing. Its biggest brands include Miller, Peroni and Holsten. Castle Lager is its flagship brand in Africa.
PI’s hire follows the brewer’s appointment of Alan Knight as head of corporate accountability, reporting to Clark. Knight joins in December from retail group Kingfisher, where he is head of CSR.