Centrica boss gives up his bonus

The boss of one of Britain’s biggest energy companies, Sam Laidlaw, said he will forgo his bonus this year. The chief executive of British Gas’ owner Centrica made the pledge […]

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By Vicky Ellis

The boss of one of Britain’s biggest energy companies, Sam Laidlaw, said he will forgo his bonus this year.

The chief executive of British Gas’ owner Centrica made the pledge in what seems to be an attempt to appease the anger of customers over rising energy bills.

The company announced it is bumping up tariffs an average of 9.2% this winter which will put bills up by around £107.

The firm is struggling to get a grip on its public image with its facebook page recently inundated by comments expressing frustration over the price rise.

Speaking at the CBI’s annual conference yesterday, Mr Laidlaw said: “Just to continue in this world where households are under pressure and assume it is business as normal is not the way thoughtful remuneration committees think about it.”

The energy boss admitted trust in the sector is at an “all-time low”, adding: “The starting point for us is absolutely about transparency and the energy industry does not have a particularly good story to tell here.”

Last year his pay is said to have totted up to £4.3million including bonuses.

He returned to the well-worn line of Big Six suppliers that if social and environmental taxes were reduced “or better still, taken off the bill entirely – which would be fairer”, he said, those cost reductions would be “immediately” passed on to customers.