Kingfisher has been quick to recognise the potential to boost profits through energy efficiency and by tapping into demand from consumers for eco products. Core to its business philosophy is to continually look for ways to minimise its environmental impact while helping customers to do the same.
Kingfisher plc, the leading home improvement group, that owns brands including B&Q and Screwfix, has been working with the Carbon Trust since 2008 to put carbon management and green growth at the heart of its business strategy. It is paying dividends. In 2010/11 sales of independently verified eco products reached £1.1 billion, up 9% from the previous year and accounting for 10.5% of total retail sales across the Group.
To date the Carbon Trust has worked with Kingfisher across its operations, in eight countries, to help it become more energy efficient, and ultimately become more profitable. Through our work together Kingfisher has identified that through investment in projects delivering high Internal Rates of Return (IRR), it will be possible to reduce its relative carbon footprint, reduce its energy costs and add to its bottom line.
The Carbon Trust has also been working with Kingfisher on its longer term plans by focusing on four strategic areas:
- Property innovation, for example, looking at leasing options; store design and layout
- Green energy, for example, looking at more sustainable sources of energy
- Reshaping the retail model, for example, looking at different routes to market
- End-to-end products and services, for example, Kingfisher's One Planet Home product range
Other areas in which we have worked together include the development of biomass heating projects for B&Q's 'off the gas grid' sites, as part of the Carbon Trust's Biomass Heat Accelerator project.