LONDON — The Hut Group, the U.K.-based, multitasking organization that owns, promotes and sells beauty and wellness brands via its online platforms, is offering a 10 million pound aid package to support vulnerable communities, key workers and emergency services in the U.K. and its international markets during the coronavirus crisis.
Half of that package will go straight to the group’s home city of Manchester, where 5,000 of its 7,000 workforce live and work. It will be channeled to city-wide support groups and charities and into purchasing safety supplies and equipment for the National Health Service and vulnerable people in the region.
THG, which describes itself as world’s largest online nutrition and personal-care business, through brands including Myprotein, Myvitamins and Lookfantastic, said it has been racing to meet rapidly increased global online demand for essential vitamins, foods, supplements, personal-care and hygiene products, and as a result has announced 500 new manufacturing and distribution jobs across its U.K., European, U.S. and Asia operations.
It said it would also be offering “production support” to the U.K.’s COVID-19 efforts.
THG has also used part of its manufacturing capability to produce hand sanitizers, and will be giving 1 million free hand sanitizers to people who otherwise can’t access them, as a part of the aid being provided.
THG said it has also made all 70 rooms in both of its Manchester city center hotels available at no charge to support both NHS staff and Greater Manchester Police who are working away from their families over the next three months. The Myprotein brand will supply “grab-and-go” bags of snacks and supplements for emergency workers to take with them each day.
The company also said it was working to ensure that its warehouses and production facilities were safe. In addition to temperature checks and social distancing measures across all sites, THG said it was installing thermal imaging technology across operations to monitor workers’ health.
“These are unprecedented times and THG has an obligation to support those in need, not only as a major regional employer, but because we have the ability to do so,” said Matthew Moulding, founder and chief executive officer of THG. “Everyone at THG wants to help in any way they can. Manchester and the surrounding areas are our home and we have a huge sense of loyalty to the local community.”
Founded in 2004 by Moulding, THG operates 178 localized web sites, retailing goods in 169 countries. In the year to Dec. 31, the group said it grew sales by 24 percent to 1.14 billion pounds, with 66 percent of sales generated internationally. More than half of THG’s sales come from its own brand products.