Centrica to lose British Gas boss in new strategy

Marion Dakers
CENTRICA is preparing to replace Phil Bentley as managing director of British Gas as the energy giant lays out a change in strategy.

He is expected to leave his post in the coming months, though no successor has been picked.

Bentley, who has spent 13 years at the firm, is believed to have clashed with Centrica management over the firm’s direction since he took his current role in 2007.

The firm could announce his departure alongside preliminary results on 27 February, which will also coincide with the results of a strategic review of the business.

British Gas and fellow energy providers have come under fire for a succession of price hikes in recent years, for which Bentley has endured much public criticism.

The “big six” utilities have also sparked anger for using complicated price structures, prompting government plans to force firms to simplify tariffs and switch customers to the cheapest deals.

Centrica also faces the dilemma of how to focus the business, which is made up of retail, oil and gas production, and US-based Direct Energy. It is also yet to make a final decision on investing in a new nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point.

Centrica declined to comment yesterday.