Hard Rock Café Vienna – Charity Program
Written by Katerina Ioannou on April 2, 2019
MusikHolics is a team that will always support people and companies that help institutions and organizations that are in need. Some days ago we had the chance to talk with the Retail Manager of Hard Rock Cafe in Vienna, Mr Christos Kousis. We talked about the charity program of Hard Rock Cafe that is running all those years and the great effort that had been done by Hard Rock Cafe in Vienna of collecting money last year for Karl’s Schubert School.
Before we begin, we would like to thank you very much for taking the time to answer our questions.
Thank you Katerina for giving me the opportunity to share more about our charity initiatives and to promote the very spirit of charity which is becoming more and more relevant on the current challenges our world is facing
First of all, we would like you to share with us some information about the beginning of Hard Rock Cafes and the founders.
Hard Rock was founded in 1971 by Isaac Tigrett and Peter Morton, two American entrepreneurs who decided to open a “Rock n Roll” dining restaurant in London. They both felt that good American food and a place where people from different social classes or styles could mix and interact on a daily basis was missing from the scene. Music would be the denominator to put all that together.
From its very beginning’s Hard Rock stood on the following 4 mottos
- Take time to be kind
- Love all Serve all
- Save the planet
- All is one
The same mottos are true for the company today and are as relevant as ever.
After the company realized the popularity of its logo and the appeal it had, it expanded on the retail side of the business starting with our iconic Hard Rock white Classic T shirt. There is a very interesting story behind the T shirt idea for those interested to find out more about it.
Hard Rock Café has been seriously involved with charity. Could you please tell us with how many institutions has collaborated and how this idea began?
Hard Rock and charity are connected from day one. From the company’s mottos to the fact that the company now has its own philanthropic foundation the idea of giving back to the community always had an important role.
Millions have been donated to causes including autism awareness, cancer prevention, human trafficking, hunger, drought, and disaster relief.and the Hard Rock Heals Foundation believes in the notion of healing through the power of music. There are activities that are carried out exclusively through our institution and other’s that are collaboration with artists. The current artist collaboration is with Bruce Springsteen and the WhyHunger foundation. The concept is that we create a product line related to the artist where a percentage of the profits goes to support WhyHunger’s work. This is the 36th such collaboration. Previous collaborations include some of the following artists, Pitbull, Rihanna, Imagine Dragons, U2, KISS, Eric Clapton, The Who, Jon Bon Jovi, Linkin Park, Shakira and Ringo Starr. Millions of dollars have been raised worldwide.
You are the Retail Manager of Hard Rock Café in Vienna. All the departments have worked together in the past on doing charity activities but the retail department is doing a great job collecting money for children with Autism individually. Could you please talk about those activities and the strong performance of your team on this part?
Amount of charity raised is not a business metric so I wouldn’t call it performance but rather commitment. With that said I am very proud of what we have achieved on 2018 as we managed to raise around 14 thousand euros by suggesting to our shop guests to make a small donation for our charity cause. A portion of these funds has been given to support Karl’s Schubert school in Vienna and another portion to our very own Hard Rock Heals foundation to support initiatives around the globe, even in countries where we do not have a physical presence as a company.
Do you think that customers that visit your café are into doing charity? Do they ask you to give more information about where the money goes? Which is ‘’the key’’ of the success on your charity work?
I believe how much someone is into charity is a combination of factors such as the values she/he carries, the society she/he lives in and how much she/he personally believes in it. For example there are people from particular countries that are much keener on donating not only more frequently but bigger amounts as well but in the end it has to do with each individual as with all things in life.
Knowing where the money is going or which institution is going to handle them is very important as people want to know the impact they are bringing.
In my opinion the key success factor on raising money for charity is having people who genuinely believe in it. No matter how much you spend on advertising or how consistently you communicate it, without believing in it, it won’t be as effective.
Spirit is a strong contagious force that unites and excites people! We see this in live events and gigs, we see it in sports and it is exactly the same when somebody is trying to convince you to support a cause.
A Big BRAVO to Danel, Noela, Sophie, Bianca, Magdalena, Elina, Manuel, Michele who have done a great job collecting money to help the music therapy program of Karl’s Schubert school in Vienna.
You can find Hard Rock Cafe Vienna here: