BEST OF THE WEST: PURE PLANET, MONEY.CO.UK, ANDREWS

We’re back with another Best of the West, where we champion the recent achievements of three South West-based businesses.

Just like May’s edition, this month’s first featured company is a challenger energy brand looking to shake up the sector…

PURE PLANET

When Richard Branson set up Virgin Mobile, the team behind its day-to-day operations were credited with disrupting the mobile market to great effect. Now, that very team have reassembled to launch Pure Planet, a 100% renewable energy supplier designed for the digital age.

Based close to Temple Meads station in central Bristol, Pure Planet aims to tempt UK households to switch to its service by promising not only to reduce their carbon footprint, but that it will not mark up the cost of the energy supplied to its customers.

Instead it operates what it calls a ‘membership model’, where customers pay a small monthly membership fee – which includes the standing charge.

The service runs entirely on digital platforms and devices, using chatbot technology as part of its customer service operation. It’s certainly a bold move, but with its team’s great track record, Pure Planet is definitely one to watch over the coming months and years.

MONEY.CO.UK

If you’re lucky enough to work at comparison website money.co.uk, not only do you have an arcade machine and Star Wars-themed cinema to keep you entertained – but your office is a converted Victorian castle!

No wonder the Cirencester-based company was recently announced as one of the UK’s best places to work, as voted for by its (clearly) happy and motivated team.

Other perks for staff to enjoy include an on-site gym, evening football sessions and three days off a year to volunteer for charitable causes.

Well done to the bosses at money.co.uk for going above and beyond to make their employees happy. We’re just off to measure up the Ready meeting room for a cinema screen and seats…

ANDREWS PROPERTY GROUP

Last but by no means least this month is Andrews, a property group based in Keynsham just outside Bristol.

Following its 70th anniversary, the company implemented a fundraising scheme which resulted in the launch of [establish], a social housing project aiming to support vulnerable young people leaving the care system.

A key aspect of the scheme is [establish] houses, where young people are offered accommodation along with support to take their next steps in life. Andrews aims to set up 50 houses in the next few years, not just in Bristol (as the first one is) but around the UK.

Its inclusion in this month’s Best of the West comes not only due to the fact it’s simply a wonderful project, but because the team at Andrews were recognised for their achievements at the recent Business Charity Awards.

All this shouldn’t be a surprise to those who are aware of how Andrews Property Group came to be. Its founder Cecil Jackson-Cole launched the business back in 1946 partly as a vehicle to fund charitable causes, and to this day it is 100% owned by three charity trusts.

To find out more, visit the Social Philanthropy page of Andrews’ website.