British Gas

UK stocks tick lower

The FTSE 100 is trading 0.20% lower at 7,411.02.

Whitbread remains the biggest faller with its share price down 4.5% at £42.63.

British Gas-owner Centrica is now leading the FTSE 100 risers, up 2.1% at 75.02p.

FTSE 250 is down 0.24% at 19,922.73

Unions urge vote against 'obscene' pay at Centrica

Iain Conn

Iain Conn, chief executive of Centrica, which owns British Gas, received a 44% rise in his pay last year to £2.4m.

The pay package is being described as "obscene" by the GMB union which has written to major institutional investor to urge them vote against the company's pay at next month's annual general meeting.

Justin Bowden, GMB national secretary, said: “Ordinary Centrica workers are not being offered 4% pay rises, never mind 44%.

“The resulting loss of confidence since the announcement of Iain Conn’s planned rise runs right through the company from top to bottom.

“From call centre staff earning 1/120th of the CEO’s pay, to the very highest levels of management are utterly demoralised by the poor judgement and lack of leadership.

“It is a classic boardroom case of ‘do as I say, not as I do’."

The GMB said it has 15,000 members in Centrica, many of whom are themselves shareholders.

The AGM is on 19 May.

Union calls out Centrica over boss pay rise

British Gas van
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Trade union Unison has called on British Gas employees to use their votes to prevent Centrica boss Iain Conn from being given a £2.4m pay package at a general meeting in May.

British Gas owner Centrica has so far axed 2,000 jobs at the firm.

“This obscene pay rise shows a total lack of empathy for the situation of employees who are struggling to make ends meet or who may soon be losing their jobs," said Unison's national officer for energy Matt Lay.

“It’s impossible to defend when there are cutbacks throughout the company. Staff should make a stand at the forthcoming AGM.

“At a time when the company is struggling financially and staff face an uncertain future it simply cannot be right that the man at the top is enjoying such a huge pay and bonus extravaganza. We ask him to show some leadership by refusing to take this pay rise.”

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