Sykes Holiday Cottages CEO Graham Donoghue [Credit: Sykes Holiday Cottages]

Sykes Holiday Cottages achieves B Corp certification

UK: Independent holiday cottage rental agency Sykes Holiday Cottages has announced that it has achieved B Corp certification, marking a major milestone in the holiday let agency’s purpose to make a positive contribution to its people, the planet, and the communities it serves.

B Corp recognises ethical businesses which combine profit with purpose. To achieve certification, businesses must reach high standards for social and environmental performance, accountability and transparency in factors from employee benefits and charitable giving to supply chain practices and input materials.

With over 30 years’ experience in the industry, Sykes Holiday Cottages now represents more than 22,500 properties, available across the UK and Ireland and New Zealand, serving more than two million holidaymakers each year.

2023 has already seen Sykes launch a number of environmental and social impact pledges, taking insights from the launch of its first carbon footprint study in 2022 and its annual Impact Report, as well as current best practice science-based targets.

Environmental pledges include reducing its Carbon Emissions by at least 50 per cent by 2030 and reaching Net Zero by 2050, working with at least 20 biodiversity projects throughout the year including their partnership with National Parks UK, and achieving Surfers Against Sewage Plastic Free Business accreditation by the end of 2024.

Meanwhile, after colleagues took part in 557 volunteering days and supported over 40 different causes in 2022, Sykes has an aim to increase volunteering days by an additional 20 per cent in 2023. Colleagues have already raised £10,000 so far this year for Sykes’ charity partner, Hospice of the Good Shepherd, with the business pledging to match the final fundraising total.

Every B Corp is scored based on five impact areas within the assessment. Sykes said that it scored particularly highly within the Workers impact pillar in recognition of contributions to its employees’ financial security, health & safety, wellness, career development, and engagement and satisfaction.

Graham Donoghue, CEO of Sykes Holiday Cottages, said: “This certification by B Corp is the culmination of years of hard work throughout our team to ensure we are consistently meeting the highest possible standards of social and environmental performance. We are thrilled to have achieved certification, solidifying our commitment to ensuring our impact on people and the planet is as important to us as our shareholder profit, and welcome wider businesses within the travel sector to put themselves forward.

“From joining the Better Business Act and being a founding member of the UK For Good initiative, to placing our people at the forefront in order to create the happiest workplace possible, our passion for delivering on Sykes’ purpose principals is steadfast and we will continue to ensure we positively balance profit, people and planet as the business grows for years to come,” he added.

Earlier this month, Sykes launched Forge Holiday Group, a newly formed parent brand to spearhead its businesses and accelerate its ambition to become a leading UK-focused holiday group. It followed the group’s acquisition of Forest Holidays, UKcaravans4hire, LHH Scotland and Lyme Bay Holidays in 2022.

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