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Corporate Responsibility Report

Chief Executive message

Creating shared value for IHG, our owners, the environment and the local community

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.

As one of the world’s leading hotel companies, 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 4,697 hotels is a central part of its community, from creating jobs and stimulating local economic opportunities, to managing their environmental impact in a responsible way and providing shelter in times of need.

Globally, we are channelling these efforts to use hospitality as a route to more sustainable communities and better lives. This means developing new and better ways to build and run our hotels, creating sustainable value for our brands, business and stakeholders, as well as addressing our social and environmental challenges.

Our three bespoke Corporate Responsibility (CR) programmes are a key part of this and we work very closely with our owners and colleagues, leveraging everything we can into a few powerful initiatives. In fact our flagship initiatives concentrate on two areas where we can make the most difference – be it through environmental sustainability with IHG Green Engage, or to the local community with IHG Academy and the IHG Shelter in a Storm Programme.

IHG Green Engage

IHG Green Engage helps us manage and minimise our impact on the environment by tracking the use of energy, carbon and water and the management of waste in our properties along with the associated costs.

Building on the success of reducing energy use in our owned and managed estate by 11.7% from 2010-2012, we have now agreed a new set of 2013-2017 targets. Our five year target is to reduce our carbon footprint per occupied room by 12%. From 2013-2017, we have also set a target to reduce water use per occupied room in water-stressed areas by 12%.

We are making good progress against these targets and in 2013 we saw a reduction of 2.4% in our carbon footprint per occupied room and a 4.6% reduction in water use per occupied room in water stressed areas.

As part of the IHG Green Engage programme, 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 and is a big step forward for our industry. It is also testament to the way we work with leading organisations and industry peers to find solutions to the pressing issues of our time.

IHG Academy

The IHG Academy continues to go from strength to strength and we now have over 300 IHG Academy programmes in 50 countries, with 144 programmes added during 2013. 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 the hotel sector. While the IHG Academy operates within a global framework, each programme is distinct and reflects local needs. Through the IHG Academy we were able to build skills and improve employability of nearly 6,400 participants in 2013 equating to 32% of our 2013-2017 target of 20,000 people. We continue to develop the programme, enhancing opportunities for more people in the places where we operate.

IHG Shelter in a Storm Programme

The IHG Shelter in a Storm Programme helps our hotels support guests, colleagues and local communities in times of disaster with financial support, vital supplies and accommodation. In 2013, we allocated funds from the IHG Shelter Fund, which is built up through fundraising efforts of colleagues in our hotels and corporate offices throughout the year, to support 15 disasters across eight countries. The disasters we supported included super Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines; floods in Jakarta, Buenos Aires, Canada and Mexico; tornadoes in the Midwestern United States and wildfires in Arizona, US.

Through the programme and other community contributions we have been able to contribute $1.92million in monetary donations and in kind support against our 2013-2017 target of $10million and we will continue to help our hotels and local communities build resilience and come back to full strength as quickly as possible in the face of adversity.

We are very proud of what we have achieved so far, but there is always more to be done. This report details our approach to CR and outlines our key achievements, as well as the priorities and actions we are taking to achieve our ambitious targets. Along with helping us create a more positive impact, our targets and core programmes send a clear signal of our commitment to doing business responsibly within the communities in which we operate.

Signature of Richard Solomons

Richard Solomons

Chief Executive Officer


Richard Solomons, CEO

Find out more about our brands

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