After proudly celebrating our 25th Anniversary in 2019, we faced an unprecedented challenge in 2020. Such a milestone often provides an opportunity for reflection, more so in light of the global pandemic, which serves as a platform to rethink how business interacts with society.
No man or woman, no community, business, city or country is an island, isolated or independent of each other. No nation remains unscathed by the impact of the pandemic, and often is it is those less fortunate in Least Developed Countries or at risk of societal exclusion that experience the greatest impacts. The interconnectedness of society means we not only share the consequences of the global pandemic, but we also collectively can engineer a positive future through impactful partnership.
Our ecosystem of greater good is centred on the belief that our business is a vehicle for societal betterment and transformation. In this time where hope and optimism are needed more than ever, we strive to catalyse positive ripple effects that extend our support to more partners seeking to create positive, sustainable change. To this end, we introduced our Greater Good Grant scheme in 2020, to provide funding for community and environment projects that contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals.
We are not just on a journey of recovery, but a journey of discovery. Covid has been a threshold for new norms, new ways of thinking and working to enhance knowledge and our understanding of people, cultures and the use of technology. This journey of discovery requires a growth mindset to learn while we also unlearn past practices that must be discarded to support a more sustainable and resilient future.
There is much to look forward to in the near future. It is an exciting and exhilarating time for businesses to recover and discover, to craft a better future, together, for all.
Ms Claire Chiang
Chairperson, Banyan Tree Global Foundation
In our 26 year-history, this global pandemic has been by far the worst crisis we have faced in its utter devastation of people’s livelihoods. The hospitality industry has been hit hard, yet now is the time to see the opportunity in this crisis, to choose to reimagine and build back better, to leave a legacy that balances profit with the greater good.
Sustainability starts with a company’s value system and a principles-based approach to doing business. Our team’s safety and wellbeing always remain our first priority, and we are strengthening a culture of empathy and resilience. As we journey through these challenges, we do it with a collective and unchanging voice: the culture of our company remains authentic and connects with, and provides stewardship of, cultural and natural heritage.
To not just survive, but thrive, we continue to go beyond the precautionary principle to create shared value with our stakeholders. This is a critical time to reassert our purpose, to ensure we bounce back with more resilience and sustainability in a post-pandemic world. We look to move from preservation to aspiration, and being resilient means constantly adapting towards a purpose that guides evolution. Purpose is the compass for business, and our original purpose, to “Embrace the Environment and Empower People” is more meaningful than ever.
This is an opportunity as much as a crisis, and has the potential to bring out the best in people. The pandemic will pass and, as people and as a company, we will build back better.
Mr Ho Kwon Ping
Executive Chairman, Banyan Tree Holdings Limited