Centrica boosts charity support

Centrica, the holding company of British Gas, is to increase its commitment to cause-related marketing (CRM) as part of an attempt to become more community focused and reinvest some ’heart’ into its corporate image.

Centrica, the holding company of British Gas, is to increase its

commitment to cause-related marketing (CRM) as part of an attempt to

become more community focused and reinvest some ’heart’ into its

corporate image.

It is currently reviewing its CRM objectives and is considering putting

its resources behind just one charitable cause next year for a sustained

initiative. This marks a change from its current policy which sees

Centrica’s businesses, British Gas and financial services firm Goldfish,

contribute pounds 1.7m to several causes including Mencap and Carers

National Association.

Speaking at last week’s Business in the Community conference, Centrica’s

group director of marketing, Simon Waugh, told delegates that Centrica

needed to restore closer links with the community. ’Whatever we do will

be commercially justifiable and help negate brand weaknesses. We have to

be careful which cause we choose because there is a risk of alienating a

big chunk of our customer base,’ he said.

Centrica has been focusing on the structure of its business in the face

of stiff competition, but Waugh said that the firm would now place more

of an emphasis on brand, image and reputation.

The utility is researching its 19 million customer base and thousands of

employees through questionnaires and focus groups to gauge opinions on

the types of causes and activity which would suit the business and

please its customers.

Research unveiled at the conference revealed that 71% of chief

executives, marketing directors and community affairs directors believe

CRM will become more important to their companies over the next three

years (Research International).


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