Posted on | September 22, 2014
Written by | Cara McIlwaine
Beam Suntory and Southern Wine & Spirits of New York take on Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS
Originally, the “Ice Bucket” Challenge was a way for some enterprising people to get others to donate to pet charities. Starting in July, #icebucketchallenge went viral on social media, helping spread awareness and funds for ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), a debilitating and fatal motor neuron disease.
Individuals and corporations started participating in the challenge, filming, posting and challenging others. Famous folks including Ben Affl eck, John Elway, Oprah Winfrey and President Obama were challenged.
Then, in August at their national sales meeting, new Beam Suntory President Tim Hassett challenged all distributor partners to contribute to the ALS Foundation. On August 28th, Beam Suntory Eastern Division members and representatives from Southern Wine & Spirits of New York decided to take the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge together. Larry Romer, vP/GM Spirits at SWSNY, recalls, “We were inspired after the sales meeting and so glad the local Beam Suntory team wanted to collaborate with us to spread awareness and contribute to such a great cause. During the process, we also challenged other SWS team members around the country.”
For Beam Suntory and SWSNY, “doing the challenge together helped emphasize the teamwork between both companies, and showcase broad industry support,” notes Carlo Coppola, vP Division Sales, Eastern Division, Beam Suntory. Participating individuals contributed directly to the ALS Association, with both Beam Suntory and SWSNY offering company matches. At press time, the ALS Association reported the campaign had raised over $112 million in total.