O2 pursues sustainable living for 20 million customers

Digital communications giant O2 has unveiled the next phase of its bold Think Big Blueprint, which will establish the company as an "agent of change", by enhancing the livelihood of 20 million customers through a sustainable technology drive.

The Think Big Blueprint, which has delivered carbon benefits equivalent to 7.5 times the networks impact since it was established in 2012, aims to utilise digital technology to help tackle climate change and promote sustainable solutions to O2 customers.

O2 will enhance customer experience by offering more sustainable choices such as developed connected devices and machine-to-machine connectivity, sim only contracts and servitisation – a concept that company is “streets ahead” on – and money exchange options through O2 Recycle.

“Doing the “right thing” is not just a nice-to-have. At O2, we’ve always believed that businesses that do good are also businesses that do better, which is why since the launch of the Blueprint in 2012 we’ve been focused on embedding sustainability across every aspect of our business,” O2’s chief executive Ronan Dunne said.

“Four years on and the pace of change in the digital world has never been quicker. O2 is uniquely placed to act as an agent of change, to not only be socially and environmentally responsible, but to help our customers, suppliers and partners realise the full potential of technology to live more sustainable lives.

“The next phase of the Blueprint seeks to do exactly that. We’ve still got some way to go and that’s exactly why we’ve set ourselves such deliberately challenging targets, taking what we’ve achieved so far and using it as a catalyst for even greater change.”

Launched in 2012 as the company’s first sustainability strategy, the Think Big Blueprint has helped more than one million young people enhance life skills through digital technology while creating more sustainable lifestyles for nearly 12 million customers. The next phase will see O2 focus on enhancing the livelihoods of a further eight million people while contributing to keeping the global average temperature increase to 1.5C as part of the Paris Agreement.

Partnering with organisations such as the NSPCC, O2 will work to improve customer online safety, while also pledging to accelerate work experience programmes established under the GoThinkBig network.

Holistic design index

The Blueprint unveiling coincides with the launch of the world’s first “holistic design index” established by O2’s owners Telefónica. The index assesses 34 countries across the globe on digital development.

The index revealed that the UK is “outperforming” in regards to global growth of digital development, but that there is room for improvement across the “fundamental metrics” of digital confidence and digital innovation and entrepreneurship. The index noted that “while London is a global financial hub, the availability of micro-scale venture capital (i.e., informal investors) could be stronger”.

In response to the index research, both Telefónica and O2 have urged the UK Government to install “fairer” public policies in order to support innovation and allow businesses to avoid a “digital divide”.

Alongside the two new sustainable landmarks, O2 recently entered the domestic energy management sphere, partnering with American firm AT&T to launch a new service that allows customers to manage their home’s energy system via a mobile app.

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Matt Mace

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