Alan Clark, chief executive of brewing giant SABMiller, has unveiled a new sustainable development plan, but insists it’s evolution not revolution

“The chief strategist of an organisation has to be the leader – the CEO.” So runs the advice of the Harvard management guru Michael Porter. SABMiller appears to be putting the theory to test. The world’s second largest brewer has a new chief executive: South Africa-born Alan Clark.

And, lo and behold, it has a new sustainability strategy too. “SABMiller Prosper” maps out the direction of travel for the UK-listed firm’s sustainable development efforts through to 2020. The new strategy centres on five core themes: entrepreneurship, energy and climate, responsible drinking, water and land use.

Exacting targets are attached to each theme. Clark is adamant that the strategy is not the whim of a new chief executive. For one thing, he’s been in post for more than a year – long enough to get the full measure of the issues at stake. Second, Clark is no maverick. Astute and measured, the soft-spoken South African has held the post of managing director for Europe, then chief operating officer, before gaining the top job.

Sharper focus

So what does this new-look strategy signify? Clark calls it a “strategic evolution”, not a new direction. He says: “In any business, including ours, you would review the overall business strategy...

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alcohol  food and drink  global CR strategy  SABMiller  sustainability strategy 

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