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British Gas renews commitment to service excellence

The results reflect some of the pressures that British Gas and the wider industry were under last year, with the competing demands of securing supply, reducing carbon emissions and keeping energy affordable.

The results also underline Centrica’s strong record in securing energy supplies for British consumers through sustained investment. £14 billion of new long-term gas contracts were signed in 2013, taking Centrica’s total commitments to buy gas and power to more than £60 billion. This is a vital contribution to securing energy for all British Gas customers.

The key British Gas results for the year ended 31 December 2013 were:

FY 2013

FY 2012

Change

H2 2013

H2 2012

Change

Adjusted operating profit (£ million)

Residential energy supply

571

606

-6%

215

261

-18%

Residential services

318

312

2%

183

187

-2%

Business energy supply and services

141

175

-19%

63

82

-23%

Total British Gas operating profit

1,030

1,093

-6%

461

530

-13%

At a time of intense debate over the structure of our energy industry, British Gas reaffirms its commitment to doing everything it can to keep prices and bills as low as possible for its customers. This will be achieved by a clear focus on efficiency, innovation and industry-leading customer service to keep and attract customers.

Significant steps have already been taken to keep prices down. British Gas was the first company to pass on to all customers the full savings from proposed changes to the ECO programme - a total reduction of £53 off the average annual dual fuel bill this year, including the Warm Home Discount rebate. In 2013, British Gas spent more than £380 million on help for the elderly, disabled and those most in need, including free insulation and grants for those in financial hardship.

British Gas also continued to invest in innovation through leadership in digital, connected homes, with 1.3 million smart meters installed to date, helping customers manage their energy consumption and make savings on their bills. And the new Hive remote heating control has been launched, allowing customers to control their heating anytime, anywhere from their mobile, tablet or computer.

British Gas has simplified customer bills and tariffs, and its parent company, Centrica, leads the industry in transparency of reporting.


Chris Weston, Managing Director of British Gas, said:

“Following a strategic review last year, we are now firmly focused on providing our customers with excellent service, leadership in digital smart homes, and good value products.

“Customers are our number one priority. As well as industry-leading service, we are committed to keeping prices and bills as low as possible through managing our costs and promoting energy efficiency in the home. The connected home of the future holds the key to this. I am confident that we now have the platform to take the business forward and return to customer growth.

“Our parent company Centrica does more than any other organisation to secure gas and electricity for British customers, with commitments totalling more than £60 billion, and we can only shoulder responsibilities on this scale if we are a profitable business.

“In the last 6 years, Centrica has invested £13.7 billion, which is equivalent to £1.85 for every £1 earned. The company also supports jobs and growth in Britain, directly employing more than 30,000 people. Our annual tax bill is around £1 billion, making us one of Britain’s biggest corporate taxpayers.”

Centrica Chief Executive Sam Laidlaw added:

“British Gas has reduced prices, designed new, competitive propositions and has a renewed focus on service. Our customers trust us to keep their lights on and their homes warm, as well as making the big, long-term investments which will secure their supplies for the future. As we continue to debate the right future shape and structure of our industry, we will never lose sight of that.”


ENDS

Interviews with the Managing Director of British Gas, and with the Chairman, Chief Executive and Chief Financial Officer of Centrica plc, commenting on today’s announcement, are available to view at www.centrica.com


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