BRITISH GAS has confirmed plans to cut around 700 management and back office jobs by the end of this year.
The firm’s parent company Centrica has blamed the losses on an energy price cap and “fierce” competition from rival suppliers, admitting it’s haemorrhaging customers.
1 British Gas has announced that 700 jobs will be axedCredit: Alamy
In January this year, energy regulator Ofgem introduced a new price cap for pricey standard variable (SVR) customers.
The cap later increased in April to meet rising wholesale prices – the price gas and electricity suppliers pay for energy.
British Gas hiked energy bills by £117 a year for 3.5million customers back in April, which bought its prices in line withe the new cap.
It had previously announced plans to make staff reductions, revealing in 2018 that 4,000 jobs would be lost over the next two years to cut costs.
This latest round of cuts is part of the 4,000 job losses already planned.
Under this move, 2,200 roles have already been axed in 2018, while it revealed in April the next 500 losses.
The company says staff have been told about the latest cuts and says it will impact roles across England, Scotland, and Wales.
A spokesman said: “This difficult decision was made because we need to respond to the growing challenges we face.
“The energy market is going through continued rapid change, competition is fierce, our energy customers are leaving us and we’re operating under a price cap.
“Over the next 45 days, as part of a full consultation process, we will discuss the proposals and seek the views of employees and their representatives.”
Unions said the job losses were a “terrible blow” for the workforce.
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Justin Bowden, national secretary of trade union GMB said: “British Gas cannot just cut its way out of a crisis, largely of its own making, simply by slashing jobs and trying to offshore.
“There has to be investment, innovation and a proper plan and vision for the future that reverses customer losses, produces growth and puts right some deep-seated cultural issues.”
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