Elspeth, Agnes and Ethel Robertson wished to ensure that the family business remained active and independent, and that it would continue to give support they had given to charities.
The Robertson Trust uses its dividends from Edrington to improve the quality of life and realise the potential of people and communities in Scotland. To date, it has given more than £215 million to charities in Scotland and it is now the country's largest independent grant-making trust.
International Giving More
The company's international success is the result of great people across the world and Edrington has extended its charitable ethos to reflect its international presence. The company encourages employees to give their time to volunteer in their communities and raise funds for good causes all over the world. In 2014 Edrington created its International Giving More fund, which donates 1% of pre-tax earnings to good causes that are chosen and supported by Edrington employees in their own communities.
In the year to 31 March 2016, charities across the world received donations valued at £1.37 million.
Edrington was created to be independent. We are proud to be privately owned by The Robertson Trust and proud to keep our home in Scotland. Our tradition of independent thinking informs our business decisions and enables the management team to take a considered, consistent and long-term approach to brand building and investment.
Edrington actively encourages staff to get involved and share in the success of the company, through initiatives such as the Edrington Achievement Award and by offering employment benefits such as share reward.
The Robertson Trust extends that involvement to communities in an unprecedented way and the trust has grown to become Scotland's largest independent grand-making trust. Outside Scotland, Edrington's International Giving More fund supports The Brugal Foundation in the Dominican Republic, and gives company employees throughout the Edrington international family the opportunity to volunteer and have their own fundraising matched by the company.
Edrington has built a reputation for integrity in its business dealings, and we passionately believe that integrity delivers results. Edrington is now a thriving international organisation of more than two thousand people, committed to Edrington's code of ethical conduct and its responsible marketing code.
The 1961 construct of The Robertson Trust and Edrington was a business model of great ingenuity, and Edrington has developed that heritage of innovation across its dealings. Edrington has built a world-class supply chain and created a distribution network that is flexible to the needs of the company, its partners and its markets.
To see why our innovation in building our brands has won so many awards, visit our brand websites for The Macallan, Brugal, The Famous Grouse, Cutty Sark and Highland Park.
Edrington is committed to the highest standards of governance and corporate citizenship. Our sustainability and responsibility programme is structured to reach across its operations from the sourcing of raw materials to local consumer campaigns encouraging responsible consumption.
Giving More Together
Giving More Together means that Edrington and The Robertson Trust each match the charitable fundraising of employees in Scotland. Every £1 raised becomes £3. In 2015/16 the total donated to good causes through this scheme was £453,000.
Giving More International
Giving More International encourages employees to give their time to volunteer in their communities and raise funds for good causes. The International Giving More donates 1% of pre-tax earnings to charities chosen by employees outside Scotland. In 2015/16 international charities received donations valued at £1.37 million.
Giving More to Education
This funds the Brugal Foundation, which supports the development and reduces the causes of poverty in the Dominican Republic. The Foundation focuses on making quality education available to talented students who face financial hardship.
Edrington's Giving More to Education team of volunteers from across Edrington's Scottish sites work with schools and colleges in their area to provide career advice and to mentor pupils.
Edrington's CSR leadership
The sustainability and responsibility committee reflects Edrington's international business and represents Edrington's supply chain and procurement, corporate affairs, our international distribution network, and sales and marketing. The team drives Edrington’s social responsibility agenda, and the company believes that we work best when we work together. Edrington is pleased to be a contributing member of the UK Public Health Responsibility Deal, consistently beating targets on including responsibility messages on our products.
Highest standards of responsible marketing
Edrington directly funds and supports the Drinkaware campaign, and extends its commitment by training all employees working in sales, marketing and communication to adhere to the industry's highest standards, as adopted in the Edrington Marketing Code
Code of Conduct
Our values in business
As a growing international company, Edrington complies with complex regulations across our business. Edrington’s ethos compels us to go further and to promote the highest standards of integrity, fairness and accountability in all our business dealings.
Edrington’s Code of Conduct affirms our values in business and explains these standards to our employees and business partners. Read the Code of Conduct and Anti-corruption Policy, and how Edrington manages its Speaking Up policy
Edrington is committed to actions that will improve the sustainability of our industry and the natural environment upon which it relies.
The company is a key supporter of the Scotch Whisky Association’s environmental strategy. For more information on the strategy and progress reports, visit the Scotch Whisky Association online.
Edrington’s support for the keynote commitment: to ensure that 20% of our industry’s primary energy requirements will be delivered from non-fossil fuel sources, has increased significantly with with the opening of a new biomass energy plant in 2013.
In the Dominican Republic, Edrington has invested in a project to recover and reuse bottles for the domestic market. Bottles are reused or submitted for recycling and plastic caps are sent for recycling. The project quadrupled the number of recyclable bottles, repaid its initial investment and created 70 new jobs, all in a single year.
Edrington makes the largest investment in sherry oak casks in the industry. The University of Vigo studied the condition and viability of the oak forests of Galicia, Asturias and Cantabria and concluded that the forests are naturally regenerating and allowing for our use of sustainably sourced oak wood for casks. The study found that there is a net annual increase of 500,000 cubic metres of oak wood, and that over a ten year period the stock of European oak growing in Galicia had increased by 67%, providing a sink for carbon dioxide and conserving biodiversity.
The Robertson Trust is the largest independent grant-making trust in Scotland. The majority of its income is derived from Edrington dividends.
It was established by the three Robertson sisters in 1961 in response to a series of hostile takeover attempts. In order to ensure the long term independence of their interests and protect the welfare of their employees, and to continue their tradition of charitable giving, they donated their business interests to the charitable trust.
Inspired by the example of its three remarkable founders, The Robertson Trust aims to improve the quality of life and realise the potential of people and communities in Scotland. It does this by responding th need and disadvantage, and by building the capacity and sustainability of charitable organisations. Every year it funds and supports charitable organisations of all sizes, committed to achieving positive change for individuals and communities across Scotland.
Last year the Robertson Trust awarded more than £17 million to 704 charities in Scotland. Since its inception in 1961 the Trust has given more than £165 million to charities.
As Edrington grows internationally, it has extended the principle of donating a share of the company’s profits within its international markets. The company donates 1% of pre-tax shareholder earnings each year to its International Giving More fund which supports good causes. As a result of this initiative, charities nominated by employees across the world benefited from Edrington's commitment to sharing its profits with the communities in which it works.
More details and examples of employee fundraising can be found in Edrington's Annual Report.
The George Arzeno Brugal - Fe y Alegria school was built by the Brugal Foundation in 2009.
The Brugal Foundation is dedicated to supporting education to improve the lives of Dominicans and the development of the Dominican Republic.
The Brugal Foundation was established in 1988 to support development and reduce poverty in its home country.
The Foundation's chief focus is on promoting quality education in the Dominican Republic and the Brugal Educational Fund invests in scholarships for talented students who face financial hardship.
The Brugal Educational Fund
Students are selected on the basis of their academic excellence, a proven commitment to their community and a desire to pursue a career that is a priority for the development of the Dominican Republic.
The Fund recognises that the barriers to a university education go beyond tuition costs, and so its scholarships also assist with travel expenses, books and materials.
In 2012, 69 students qualified for professions that will help to build the nation, including industrial engineering, chemistry, telematics, electronics and communication systems.
Over the past year, sponsorships totalling US$150,000 were awarded. This brings the value of scholarships granted since the Fund was created in 2006 to US$1.8 million, which has funded 278 young Dominican students so far.
The George Arzeno Brugal Fe y Alegría Education Centre
More than 400 children aged 5 to 12 continued their education at The George Arzeno Fe y Alegría Education Centre in the village of San Marcos last year. The Centre was built by the Brugal Foundation in 2009 and the Foundation continues as its sponsor, working with the Ministry of Education and Fe y Alegría, a local Catholic institution.
The teaching ranges are from pre-primary grade to 6th Grade. Unlike the traditional education model of the Dominican Republic, the Centre works extended hours, benefitting both the children and working parents.
Extracurricular courses include theatre, music, IT and English.