Henderson Group puts the community at the heart of its business - Business In The Community

Henderson Group puts the community at the heart of its business

Henderson Group is a local business made up of four companies: Henderson Wholesale, Henderson Retail, Henderson Group Property, and Henderson Foodservice.


Henderson Wholesale has been distributing food and grocery-related products to the convenience retail sector for almost 120 years and is the largest operator of its kind in the country, supplying 420 stores. Operating out of its head office in Mallusk, the Group employs almost 2,900 employees across Northern Ireland and reported an annual turnover of £663.6m in 2014.

What The Henderson Group did

As owners of the SPAR, EUROSPAR, VIVO, VIVOXTRA and VIVO Essentials franchises in Northern Ireland, the Henderson Group is proud that many of its stores provide important services at the heart of communities in which they operate.

The Henderson Group has a comprehensive CSR strategy, ‘Tomorrow Matters’, a large part of which focuses on its role in the community; the strategy has a variety of activities dedicated to giving back to the communities the company services. The Henderson Group aims to be the leading retail operator in the UK when it comes to community engagement and decided to achieve this through tackling a massive issue.

In Northern Ireland alone 1,400 people suffer an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest with fewer than ten per cent surviving. Early cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and a defibrillator shock are vital to a person’s chances of surviving a cardiac arrest. Through awareness of this, the retailer saw an opportunity to help play a vital role in helping to save lives, especially in rural areas where it may take longer for the emergency services to reach critically ill people.

The Henderson Group, in conjunction with its retail partners, launched an extensive and comprehensive campaign to install 300 automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) outside its stores, with availability for the community to access 24 hours a day, seven days a week – potentially saving hundreds of lives. The Group also felt it was extremely important to educate the general public on the importance of CPR and how to use defibrillators properly. It produced public information leaflets and information through a dedicated website it developed with the use of video to highlight survivors’ stories.

The outcomes and impacts

  • 309 stores volunteered to raise funds for a defibrillator
  • £180,000 raised and 120 devices already installed to date
  • Raised £800k for NSPCC & £503k for Cancer Fund for Children
  • Over 450 people trained in the use of CPR/AED
  • 95% of employees believed that the company makes a valuable contribution to the community and worthy causes

To find out more, email bronagh.luke@henderson-group.com