Fundraiser: Bacardi staff prepare to walk the length of the island to raise funds for CADA, during last year’s Corporate Responsibility Week. Staff are pictured with CADA chairman Anthony Santucci (centre). They completed an ‘end to end’ walk across the island, raising $2,765 for the charity. *Photo supplied
Fundraiser: Bacardi staff prepare to walk the length of the island to raise funds for CADA, during last year’s Corporate Responsibility Week. Staff are pictured with CADA chairman Anthony Santucci (centre). They completed an ‘end to end’ walk across the island, raising $2,765 for the charity. *Photo supplied

From its early beginnings to one of the largest spirits companies in the world, corporate responsibility remains at the heart of Bacardi.

Bacardi Limited states: “We are committed to managing our operations responsibly to benefit our people, consumers, customers, suppliers, local communities and to protect the environment.”

This includes socially responsible marketing, high standards of corporate governance, responsible sourcing, philanthropy and community involvement.

Bacardi sees its brands and people as key to its success. As part of its vision, the company has developed the ‘ONE Bacardi’ strategy, to unleash the potential of its staff through individually-tailored programmes.

Over the next three years Bacardi will also nurture its next generation of leaders, through a 70:20:10 approach — 70 per cent on-the-job experience, 20 per cent coaching and mentoring, and 10 per cent formal, classroom training.

The company identifies its purpose as ‘Spirit for Life’.

Bacardi Limited says that as a guiding principle for employees, this “links to the idea that each individual has an inner spirit or drive to live their dreams and to be all that they can be”.

It says: “We want the Bacardi Purpose and Values to be an integral part of our employees’ lives, informing our individual and corporate behaviour.”

Stewart Gurr, Managing Director of the Bermuda Office, Bacardi International Limited, said: “We are big on social responsibility.”

Bacardi sees encouraging responsible consumption of alcohol as “a strong business principle”, particularly in the marketing of its products.

The company states: “Around the world we support, and are an integral part of, trade and social organizations that combat the problems of alcohol abuse and misuse.”

In Bermuda, Bacardi sponsors the CADA (Centre for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention) ‘Let Us Drive’ campaign.

But the principle is also one that its staff live by. 

A few years ago Mr. Gurr stopped a drunken man from driving his motorcycle home, insisting a taxi take him home instead and paying for the fare.

 “Everyone here really believes in the Bacardi values,” said Mr. Gurr.

“We want people to enjoy our products and to have a good time, but in moderation. We believe in this message and live it.”

Our founders gave birth to our core values, successive generations enhanced them, and nearly 6,000 employees live the core values of PASSION, EXCELLENCE, TRUST and CARING with the same “Spirit for Life” since 1862.

Passion: inspired by our heritage and our vision

Passion is a powerful or compelling emotion or feeling. At Bacardi, we are passionate about our business and brands. Company President Emilio Bacardí (1844-1922) was passionate about his native city of Santiago de Cuba. Seeking his country’s liberation from Spanish rule, Emilio was twice exiled and imprisoned for anti-colonial activities. He also established Cuba’s first municipal museum and public library in his city. Today, our passion extends towards the environment. In 2009, the company increased its use of renewable fuel to 13 per cent.

Excellence: Beyond what is expected

Excellence is a state of superiority. At Bacardi, excellence is a part of everything we do. ‘Maestro del Ron’ Facundo M Bacardí (1848-1926) was passionate about excellence in crafting BACARDI rum and this has continued down through the generations. Today BACARDI is ‘the most Awarded Rum Brand in the World’.

Trust: True to each other

Trust is the reliance on someone’s integrity and strength. Before the arrival of Enrique Schueg in 1884, the husband of Amalia Bacardí, the company was in a state of bankruptcy. The Bacardí brothers (Facundo and Emilio) entrusted him with the company’s finances. He later became President of Compañía ‘Ron Bacardi’ SA and the unofficial patriarch of the family. This trust then carried through to his successor and son-in-law José ‘Pepín’ Bosch. In 1960, when the company was exiled from Cuba, it lost many assets including its shareholder list. As chairman, Pepín had to re-divide the company among its shareholders.

Caring: In all we do

Caring is looking out for someone or something. In recent years the company has publicized many acts of caring, but in the past these acts were carried out anonymously. Caring stems from founders. Emilio and Facundo Bacardí were often approached by employees and residents of Santiago de Cuba for monetary help. They would refuse assistance only to slip envelopes of cash underneath doorways at night. In 1950, Archbishop Enrique Pérez Serantes praised the charity of President Enrique Schueg, saying he “had won the love and gratitude… from the entire populous of Santiago and the province of Oriente”. Today, the company continues this tradition. It has provided aid to hurricane victims in New Orleans and Cuba, and earthquake victims in Haiti and Chile, as well as social and environmental projects around the world.