Initiative sets out to improve tavern experience

RED CARPET TO THE FUTURE The Taverns of the Future initiative was officially launched earlier this month by Heineken South Africa and its partners

BURTON SWAIN Through our growing partnerships, we are working together to upskill and enhance taverners’ offerings to enable holistic community development

THE SPOT TO BE The recently revamped The Spot 1818 hosted the launch of Heineken South Africa's Taverns of the Future Initiative

17th March 2023

By: Halima Frost

Senior Writer


Font size: - +

Earlier this month, multinational brewing company Heineken South Africa spearheaded the launch of an initiative, Taverns of the Future, at The Spot 1818 in Phiri, Soweto.

The Spot 1818 is one of the taverns to benefit from the initiative.

The initiative involves the transformation –including building, construction, business and diversification support – of neglected tavern facilities, as well as monetary investment in developing the taverns’ offerings.

Multinational food producer McCain Food Services, ambient media provider Primedia Retail, and finance and business solutions provider Vodacom Financial Services have partnered with Heineken South Africa on this initiative.

“Through our growing partnerships, we are working together to upskill and enhance taverners’ offerings to enable holistic community development,” says Heineken South Africa business development GM Burton Swain.

He adds that Heineken South Africa is focused on developing a sense of pride in townships and encouraging ownership, accountability and responsibility among small, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs) in the hospitality sector, in impoverished areas.

To date, Heineken South Africa has revamped 120 taverns across eight provinces.

Swain says the improvements include adding adequate bathroom amenities such as more toilet stalls and urinals.

The taverns are fully repainted inside and out, and kitchens have been refitted and equipped.

Additional furniture or design aesthetics, such as mirrors, signboards, or artificial grass, have been introduced, as well as new branding and advertising opportunities, including screens for digital advertising and bathroom stall advertising.

In terms of safety, improved lighting and closed-circuit television cameras, as well as security personnel, have been introduced at the taverns that required this.

“As part of our support to taverners, we have implemented these safety protocols to ensure that patrons feel safe in outlets,” he says.

Importantly, outlets that are part of the initiative have committed to ensuring their patrons’ safety by adhering to a prescribed code of conduct.

The code of conduct includes adhering to trading conditions and trading hours, as well as not serving alcohol to anyone under the legal drinking age of 18 or patrons who have had too much to drink.

Each tavern has also pledged not to be a disturbance or nuisance to the community in which it operates, as well as following a zero-tolerance approach to forms of violence or harassment inside the tavern.

Swain points out that stock management and payment systems have been implemented at the taverns and all employees have been trained accordingly.

“Among other skills training, the taverns will receive business plan support, stock- take support, and even recipe/meal planning and training.”

Further, analytics specialists SupplyPal – an independent partner responsible for the mentorship and coaching of tavern owners – will provide additional support to grow the business and maintain changes implemented at taverns through its Health Check programme.

This includes a self-assessment tool whereby owners will be required to do an online monthly self-assessment that will prepare them for the next grading visit by the SupplyPal coach.

Learning from the Past

“We have taken inspiration and learnings from a few markets that we operate in

in Mexico, Nigeria and the UK.

“The UK example had a similar challenge a few years ago, where some pubs become antisocial places of excessive drinking, and that had to change,” says Swain.

Heineken South Africa, therefore, spearheaded that change, with clients finding that pubs are mixed-gender sociable spaces; this was achieved by improving, for example, toilet facilities, and by developing low-waste, high-margin menus.

He explains that additional changes included a sit-down food occasion and building alternative revenue streams to sustainably improve pubs’ revenue and profitability.

This has improved businesses and created a safe and more sociable space in communities, similar to what is being achieved by the Taverns of the Future project in South Africa.

“Through these partnerships, which include brand sponsor Amstel Lager, we can provide these taverns with the tools for a better future, working together to upskill and enhance taverners’ offerings to allow for more holistic SMME township development,” he concludes.

Edited by Zandile Mavuso
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Features


Latest News


Booyco Electronics
Booyco Electronics

Booyco Electronics, South African pioneer of Proximity Detection Systems, offers safety solutions for underground and surface mining, quarrying,...


From batteries for boats and jet skis, to batteries for cars and quad bikes, SABAT Batteries has positioned itself as the lifestyle battery of...


Latest Multimedia

sponsored by

Resources Watch image
Resources Watch
29th November 2023
Photo of Martin Creamer
On-The-Air (24/11/2023)
24th November 2023 By: Martin Creamer

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?







sq:0.17 0.204s - 91pq - 2rq
Subscribe Now