“Since the outbreak of COVID-19, our priority has been the safety and wellbeing of our employees, our customers and our communities. While we continue to take mitigating actions to contain our costs and protect our financial position, we are also committed to safeguarding jobs and supporting the relief efforts during this global health emergency. I would like to thank our teams for their continued determination and resilience as we continue Thomas Burberry’s legacy of protecting others and caring for the community.” Marco Gobbetti, Chief Executive Officer
Given the rapidly evolving situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Burberry wanted to provide an update on the steps they are taking to support their employees, customers and communities.
Over the past three months, Burberry have put in place measures to help prevent the spread of the virus and ensure employee safety and wellbeing, including temporarily closing retail stores and implementing strict social distancing protocols. They have also looked beyond Burberry, dedicating resources to supporting those in need and preventing further infection. This includes turning over their trench coat factory in Castleford, UK to manufacture personal protection equipment (PPE) for medical and care workers.
While continuing to look hard at cost base, reducing spend on non-essential areas, they have decided to take the following additional steps to support their priorities over the next few months:
- Burberry will continue to maintain base pay for all employees who are unable to fulfil their roles because of store or site closures.
- Company will not rely on government support for jobs in the UK where more than a third of their employees are based.
- Company’s senior leaders will take a voluntary 20% pay cut from April through June.
- The Board of Directors has agreed to a voluntary 20% reduction in their base salary and fees from April through June, with the equivalent cash amount to be donated to the Burberry Foundation COVID-19 Community Fund. The fund, which was established earlier this month for employees to support communities in need globally, is additional to the financial donations Burberry has made to vaccine research and charities alleviating food poverty, with monies going towards procuring and distributing PPE, helping foodbanks and supporting healthcare charities around the world.
Their trench coat factory in Castleford is now manufacturing non-surgical gowns and supplying them to the UK National Health Service. They are also sourcing surgical masks through supply chain and supplying them to the NHS and charities such as Marie Curie, which provides nursing care for families living with terminal illness in the UK. To date, Burberry have donated more than 100,000 pieces of PPE.