Suning Holdings Group, one of China’s leading companies, has launched 10 initiatives to help its employees, customers, partners and subsidiaries to combat the coronavirus outbreak in China.
The donating supplies worth over 8 million RMB including 3.5 million RMB of medical supplies to emergency hospitals in Wuhan. Others include ensuring supplies of 230,000 bottles of disinfectant and 80,000 bags of surgical face masks, launching a bespoke online diagnosis platform and offering those staying safe indoors free access to entertainment through its PPTV business. Suning’s 10 initiatives are:
1. Creating a special fund and utilising its effective global supply chain for emergency supplies
Shortly after the outbreak, the chairman of Suning Holdings Group, Zhang Jindong, formed Suning’s group for epidemic prevention and arranged a series of actions in Wuhan to support efforts in fighting the epidemic. This included the creation of a special fund, while Suning’s global supply chain was utilised to source and donate emergency supplies, including 425,000 masks and 770,000 medical gloves.
Suning Holdings Group had donated supplies worth more than 8 million RMB by 2nd February 2020. This included medical supplies worth 3.5 million RMB to the two emergency hospitals in Wuhan. At the same time, crowdfunding through Suning’s charitable channel has raised in excess of 1.5 million RMB.
2. Providing ample supplies to ensure price stability
To ensure price stability, Suning is ensuring adequate stock of food, disinfectants and home appliances for disinfection in its two logistic warehouses in Wuhan. Carrefour China, of which Suning acquired an 80% stake in 2019, has also pledged to ensure ample supply and stable prices for food and home appliances.
Suning delivered its first batch of food and medical supplies to Wuhan on 23rd January. As of 30th January, approximately 230,000 bottles of disinfectant and 80,000 bags of masks had been sold in Carrefour China. In addition, more than 5,000 tonnes of vegetables, 560 tonnes of pork, 2,200 tonnes of fruits and 400 tonnes of eggs had been provided through the stores.
3. Stepping-up financial support through Suning Finance
Suning Finance has arranged 8 billion RMB in emergency funds to support the financing of relevant suppliers, service providers and SMEs with an online fast track system. For producers of medical supplies, Suning Finance has increased the lending quota by 20-50%, offered preferential interest rates and expedited access to funds. Suning Finance has also carried out automatic renewal and non-repayment renewal loans to alleviate the worry of liquidity for some companies.
4. Creating a fast track in logistics
Suning formed the special Hubei logistics team to support charities and organisations in delivering and allocating supplies. Alongside medical equipment, this also opened direct delivery channels for living supplies. Over 12,000 staff and 5,800 transport vehicles remained working during the virus outbreak and some 350 tonnes of supplies had been delivered through the fast track by 1st February.
5. Opening 24-hour convenience stores
During the Spring Festival, Suning Xiaodian continued to operate 24-hour delivery services and, in 210 stores across 51 cities, Carrefour China continued to deliver goods to consumers living within 3 kilometers in less than one hour. For all staff working in the stores, Suning provided protection supplies and allowances worth more than 100 million RMB.
6. Freezing rents across the Suning Plaza portfolio
On 31st January, Suning Plaza and Suing.com Plaza announced rents would be exempt from payment between 25th January to 8th February for its partner brands. At the same time, Suning Real Estate closed its physical sales offices and opened its online service channel.
7. Offering free remote access to ‘Suning Douya’ office system
On 28th January, Suning Technology announced free access to ‘Suning Douya’, a remote office system designed to solve problems in companies’ remote operations and support the prevention of infection. The system has been developed by Suning Technology and has already been used by over 280,000 Suning employees as well as 10,000 retail partners and customers.
8. Launching an online diagnosis and information sharing platform
Suning Holdings Group collaborated with three senior respiratory physicians to launch an online platform to better educate people about the coronavirus, share prevention methods and provide efficient diagnosis service.
9. Keeping the maintenance team in operation
Suning’s maintenance team kept working during the Spring Festival, making sure that vital facilities such as water heaters were installed in a timely manner and could be operated smoothly in hospitals and medical centres in quarantine areas.
10. Offering free access to online content for people staying indoors
Suning’s online content platforms have offered free access to entertainment content to encourage people to stay safe indoors. PPTV has already launched more than 10 films and TV series for free, while PPTV Sports has announced the free live broadcast of sports matches and events from 25th January to 8th February.