Chief Executive message
Grounding corporate responsibility in the way we do business
Being a Responsible Business is part of IHG’s DNA. It underpins each of our three strategic corporate priorities of preferred Brands, talented People and best-in-class Delivery. As well as helping IHG make a positive long-term contribution to the communities in which we operate, behaving in a responsible way gives us a competitive advantage. By enhancing the reputation of our brands and empowering our people, we are able to create value for all of our shareholders and stakeholders in the long term.
There are a number of ways in which we behave responsibly. Our three bespoke Corporate Responsibility (CR) initiatives are a key part of this. Our flagship initiatives are concentrated on two areas where we can make the most difference – the environment and the local community. These are IHG Green Engage, the IHG Academy and the IHG Shelter in a Storm Programme.
As one of the leading hotel companies in the world with a broad portfolio of brands, we have an unrivalled opportunity to bring about positive change in the environment and community both at a local and global level. Each one of our 4,600 hotels is a central part of its community, creating jobs and stimulating economic opportunity, managing their environmental impact in a responsible way and providing shelter in times of need. Globally, we harness those efforts to achieve our mission to transform hospitality for more sustainable communities and better lives. That means developing new and better ways to build and run our hotels, which create sustainable value for our brands, business and stakeholders as well as addressing our social and environmental challenges.
IHG Green Engage
When we launched our pioneering environmental management platform IHG Green Engage in 2009, we set a three year target to reduce energy use in our owned and managed estate by between 6 – 10%. I'm delighted to say that in 2012 we exceeded that target with a reduction of 11.7%. From 2013 - 2017, we are going to track carbon use instead of energy, and we’ve made a commitment to reduce our carbon footprint per occupied room by 12%. Over the same period we have set a target to reduce water use per occupied room in water stressed areas by 12%.
As part of the IHG Green Engage programme, we look for opportunities to bring about change at a global level and to this end, we played a lead role in the International Tourism Partnership (ITP)/World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) working group, the ‘Hotel Carbon Measurement Initiative’. This led to the launch of a global carbon standard for hotels in 2012. As well as being a big step for our industry this is a good example of the way we work with leading organisations and industry peers to find solutions to the pressing issues of our times.
The IHG Academy continues to go from strength to strength and we now have over 250 IHG Academy programmes in 47 countries, with 100 programmes added during 2012. This unique collaboration involves our hotels joining forces with local schools, colleges and community organisations to help people develop the skills they need to secure a job in today's hotel sector. While the IHG Academy operates within a global framework, each programme is distinctive and reflects local needs. Through the IHG Academy, we are able to build skills and raise aspirations across hundreds of communities. We will continue to develop the programme, enhancing the opportunities of more people in the places where we operate.
IHG Shelter in a Storm Programme
The IHG Shelter in a Storm Programme builds on the important role hotels have played in society – providing shelter and vital assistance when disaster strikes. In 2012, we allocated funds from the IHG Shelter Fund to support 10 disasters across six countries. This provided our guests, employees and local communities with financial support, essential supplies and accommodation in their time of need. The disasters we supported included severe flooding and a cyclone in Fiji, Superstorm Sandy on the US East Coast, flooding in Manila and the UK, wildfires in Colorado, and Hurricane Isaac on the US Gulf Coast.
We are very proud of what we've achieved so far, but there is always more to be done. This report details our approach to CR and outlines our key achievements, priorities and most importantly, our ambitious targets for the future. Along with helping us create a more positive impact, these targets are a clear signal of our commitment to doing business responsibly and to creating shared value for IHG, our owners, the environment and the local community.
Chief Executive Officer