Centaur Media PLC - The engineer

Centaur Media PLC - The engineer

Centaur is a leading UK based business information and media group. We provide integrated marketing and information solutions to high value professional and commercial markets. The group is organised in 3 operating divisions reflecting the core capabilities of the business. Business Publishing’s mission is the provision of content-based marketing solutions and market intelligence to its niche markets. Its portfolio currently comprises a dozen market leading brands and includes Marketing Week, Creative Review, Money Marketing, The Lawyer, Employee Benefits and The Engineer. The primary focus of Business Publishing is on digital media and revenues are derived principally from advertising, sponsorship, subscription to lead generation solutions and other content-based marketing solutions.

Company details

Wells Point 79 Wells Street , London , W1T 3QN United Kingdom
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Business Type:
Publishing company
Industry Type:
Publishing / Media / Marketing
Market Focus:
Globally (various continents)
Year Founded:
1856

Centaur Media creates expert content and insight, engaging events and smart digital technology.

From our digital media and iconic print brands to our award-winning events and cutting-edge data products, we enable and inspire the very best performance in a range of selected markets.

We have the information that people want and need. We create products and services that make content valuable, combining the deepest knowledge with the best user experience.

Centaur Media is - at heart - a content business. But we are continually redefining what content means in the 21st Century and seeking new ways of communicating that content to our customers.

Centaur Media aims to enable and inspire the very best performance. We do this by understanding our customers and their needs, and creating products and services to deliver essential, engaging content.

Collaboration is at the heart of everything we do; our content creators, data experts, event organisers and digital specialists work together to connect our customers with the best information and experiences.

The range of our products and services is unrivalled, from our award-winning events to our market-leading digital data products.

With a relentless focus on the customer, we aim to create insight, interaction and impact.

Insight
Our data intelligence and specialist marketplace products and services provide fantastic levels of insight that serve our customers' business requirements.

Interaction
Our events, communities and network connect the people who matter, enabling interaction across each of our markets with unrivalled levels of engagement.

Impact
Our content, editorial and commercial partnerships aim to create real impact in the lives of our customers, actively informing the decisions they make and roles they play.

Centaur is a leading UK based business information and media group. We provide integrated marketing and information solutions to high value professional and commercial markets.

The group is organised in 3 operating divisions reflecting the core capabilities of the business. Business Publishing’s mission is the provision of content-based marketing solutions and market intelligence to its niche markets. Its portfolio currently comprises a dozen market leading brands and includes Marketing Week, Creative Review, Money Marketing, The Lawyer, Employee Benefits and The Engineer. The primary focus of Business Publishing is on digital media and revenues are derived principally from advertising, sponsorship, subscription to lead generation solutions and other content-based marketing solutions.

Business Information’s mission is the delivery of high value content and workflow solutions to support business-critical decision making. Its portfolio currently comprises 10 leading brands, including Econsultancy, Perfect Information, Profile Group and VBR. Information and workflow solutions are delivered primarily in digital format and revenues are derived principally from annual subscriptions.

Exhibition’s mission is the organisation of information-rich events which connect buyers and sellers. Its portfolio comprises 10 leading brands. They include Homebuilding & Renovating, Marketing Week Live, Business Travel Show, The Meetings Show, Employee Benefits Show and Subcon. Revenues are derived principally from the sale of exhibition stands, sponsorship and other related marketing solutions.

Centaur operates currently in 10 vertical market sectors and our core strategy is to lead our selected market communities with a diversified yet complementary portfolio of market-leading content-based marketing brands, events and business-critical information and workflow solutions. We typically aim to achieve this by:

  • Creating or acquiring the leading information or event brand for high value professional and commercial markets
  • Reinforcing those brands through multiple brand extensions eg awards, summits, showcases, special reports, research, magazines, digital newsletters, databases, workflow tools etc
  • Exploiting the premium route to market offered by our marketing brands to enhance the market penetration of our information brands and using content from our information brands to enrich our marketing brands.

Our vision is for Centaur to be a leading international business information and media group, built on a strong culture of integrity, innovation and excellence. Our core goals are to continue to improve the scale, balance and efficiency of the business.

  • Scale: We aim to deliver sustained strong revenue growth through a combination of innovative organic growth and carefully selected acquisitions. This will create value for our shareholders and opportunities for our people.
  • Balance: We aim to enhance the resilience and long-term profitability of the business, principally by a substantial increase in the proportion of revenues derived from digital information and marketing solutions and from high value events. This will increase the value of the business and reinforce our vision of market leadership.
  • Efficiency: We aim to deliver a significant and sustainable increase in profitability and cash generation. This will enhance shareholder returns and generate additional funds for investment in the future of the business.

In 2011 we set out our key medium term performance targets in respect of these goals, which are to double revenues, to double digital share of revenues to at least 50%, to double margins to at least 25% and to increase international revenues to 25%.

Centaur’s vision of sustainable market leadership depends upon an intimate understanding of customer needs, high standards of quality in our content and service delivery and the ability to respond effectively to change through continuous innovation and improvement.

The key to our success lies in the calibre, commitment and professionalism of our people. We aim to provide them with a working environment in which they will develop their skills and perform to the highest standards and to sustain a meritocratic and entrepreneurial culture, based on our core values of integrity, innovation and excellence.

The Board recognises the need for a clearly defined strategy and well defined policies in relation to the impact of the Group’s activities on all its key stakeholders and the broader environment as a whole. The Board has therefore formulated an approach to CSR which is both complementary to the stated strategic objectives of the Group but also practical in terms of implementation of policy and measurement of results.

People in Centaur

Centaur’s success depends upon its ability to keep developing new products and refreshing existing ones and that in turn depends upon our ability to attract and retain a highly motivated, entrepreneurial team of people. In seeking to achieve this objective, we believe that the following are the most important factors for us to address:

Giving our people ownership: Centaur has a strong focus on individual vertical communities, which are served in a variety of ways by our three operating divisions. We encourage our people to have a strong sense of identity and ownership with the particular community, business unit or brand with which they are associated.

Maintaining unity for a common vision, strategy and culture: We seek to provide each of our divisions and the business units within them with a corporate context of a clearly communicated vision and strategy and a common culture. We aim to achieve this through good communication on a number of levels. In addition to a structure of formal and informal business community meetings across the Group, which are attended on a monthly basis by the CEO and CFO, a number of other mechanisms are used to present and reinforce a clear corporate perspective of the group. These include:

  • The Group intranet, which has this year been redeveloped and which provides a regular update of news and corporate information.
  • A monthly email newsletter which includes a message from the CEO, business highlights from across the group, updates on HR matters, people news and answers to staff questions.
  • Senior managers’ attendance at regular management seminars to promote and share best practice across the Group. In addition, all senior managers receive a six monthly update of company results from the CEO and CFO.

Providing competitive rewards: Centaur's culture is meritocratic and in reviewing remuneration packages, we seek to focus primarily on individual performance. Individual reviews are conducted throughout the year and occur on the anniversary of joining. We aim to provide financial rewards and a range of associated benefits that are competitive within our sector.

Providing effective resources: Centaur's management style is intended to incorporate a high level of coaching to support and promote superior performance. This is supplemented by a broad-based training programme tailored to ongoing needs of the business. This includes the Centaur Sales Training Academy, a more extended training programme for new sales recruits.

Listening to our staff: The Group conducts an annual employee engagement survey to generate feedback on specific issues by all staff which is considered in policy development.

The Environment

The Board is aware of the potential impact on the environment of the Group’s activities and recognises its responsibility to the environment particularly with regard to its use of paper and print for magazines, disposal of waste and recycling, packaging and distribution of magazines, use of toner inks and in reducing its carbon footprint primarily in its consumption of energy. The policy of the Group is to consider the impact on the environment as one of the factors when making purchasing decisions and to regularly record and monitor the results of those decisions on the environment, where practical. The Director responsible for overseeing this policy is Mark Kerswell.

Purchase of paper and printing The Group sources all its magazine paper grades from mills that hold valid forestry certification scheme accreditation, which ensures its pulp is sourced from well managed and sustainable forests, and have ISO 14001 and EMAS accreditation.

Disposal of waste & recycling – The recycling initiative introduced at the Company’s head office last has now been “rolled out” in all the London offices and this has resulted in over 50% of office waste now being recycled. Packaging and distribution of magazines – Lighter weight plastic that can be recycled has been adopted and tight controls exercised on print runs.

Toner inks - All toner cartridges and computer equipment continue to be recycled where possible. In order to reduce the consumption of toner cartridges computers are linked to photocopiers for printing purposes in most areas of the business.

The Community

Centaur has decided to support Macmillan as the Company charity of the year. We have made a one year commitment to support Macmillan by a direct Company donation, and by matching funds raised by employees.

Centaur also operates payroll giving so that employees can give to a chosen charity in a tax efficient way. To encourage payroll giving if an employee makes a contribution of at least £5 per month to a chosen charity, Centaur makes a payment of £5 per month to that same charity.

Another community initiative is the introduction of employee volunteering. To encourage commitment to the causes employees support, Centaur will allow each member of staff 1 day per year paid leave to perform volunteer work for any charity or voluntary organisation of their choice.

Integrity is one of Centaur's core values and we are committed to maintaining the highest legal and ethical standards in our business conduct.

We value our reputation for ethical behaviour, financial probity and reliability. We recognise that any involvement in bribery by the Company or anyone related to it will reflect adversely on our image and reputation.

Centaur prohibits all forms of bribery and has introduced a policy that can be found here. The policy is based on the six principles in the guidance published by the Ministry of Justice.

Any breach of this policy will be regarded as a serious matter and there are procedures in place to deal with breaches. Employees are also encouraged to use the Whistle Blowing Policy to report any matters that concern them.

Introduction

Integrity is the primary value on which Centaur's culture is founded and we are committed to maintaining the highest level of legal and ethical standards in the conduct of our business affairs. In this context, we value our reputation for ethical behaviour and for financial probity and reliability. We recognise that any involvement in bribery by the Company or anyone related to it will reflect adversely on our image and reputation. Bribery is a criminal offence which may expose the organisation and its employees to the risk of prosecution, fines and imprisonment as well as damaging our reputation. Under the Bribery Act 2010, it is an offence for any person either to offer, promise or give a bribe, or request, agree to receive or accept a bribe, where the bribe is connected with improper conduct. The Act also holds organisations responsible for failing to implement adequate procedures to prevent such acts by those working for the organisation or on its behalf.

What the policy covers

Centaur prohibits bribery in all its forms. This prohibition:

  • Includes offering, giving, requesting or accepting any bribe, whether in the form of cash or any other advantage, to or from any third party;
  • Applies everywhere in the world;
  • Applies to all of our employees, managers, agents and representatives; and
  • Covers our dealings with all third parties including: public officials or bodies, private individuals, employees of other businesses, agents or any other individual or body performing services on Centaur's behalf.

Centaur has therefore adopted a policy to make its position clear. Details of this policy are set out below. Any breach of this policy will be regarded as a serious matter and may result in disciplinary action. Please refer to the Disciplinary and Dismissal Procedures.

Seeking assistance

Although in most cases common sense will determine when a bribe is being offered or given there are sometimes 'grey areas'. If you are in any doubt and wish for advice or guidance on the policy you should in the first instance speak to your profit centre/service department head. If they are unable to help they will know where to seek further advice.

Reporting concerns

If you are aware of any of the following:

  • breach of Centaur's Ant-Bribery Policy and procedures;
  • any act which may constitute an offence under the Bribery Act 2010 and any other applicable bribery or anti-corruption legislation; and
  • any attempts to cover-up or conceal any act which may constitute an offence under the Bribery Act 2010 or any other applicable bribery or anti-corruption legislation;

a report may be made anonymously under the Company's Whistle Blowing Policy that you will find on the Intranet.

Gifts & Hospitality

Gifts and hospitality are a normal and important part of developing and maintaining relationships with suppliers and customers. However, such gifts and hospitality must not be 'disproportionate' to the services offered or be used to induce someone to take an impartial decision. A good test is 'Does it feel right - Would I mind anyone knowing about it?'

The following deals with these issues:

1.1 Centaur does not permit any officer or employee of Centaur, directly or indirectly, and whether in his/her personal capacity or on behalf of Centaur:

  • to solicit any gift or hospitality in the course of his/her employment;
  • to offer, give or receive any gift or hospitality which is in breach of the law of any country where such is offered, given or received
  • to offer or give to, or receive from, any Connected Person a personal or corporate gift in excess of a reasonable value
  • to offer or give to, or receive from, any Connected Person hospitality that is excessive
  • to offer, give or receive any gift or hospitality that could influence a decision or compromise a person's impartiality

If an employee or officer is in any doubt as to whether gifts or hospitality are unreasonable or excessive the officer or employee must seek approval from his/her line manager in writing.

1.2 Centaur does not permit any officer or employee of Centaur, directly or indirectly, and whether in his/her personal capacity or on behalf of Centaur to offer or give any donation to any political, charitable, or not-for-profit organisation, where a trustee, manager or beneficiary of that organisation is a Connected Person, or is related to a Connected Person (other than through a Centaur charity giving scheme).

In exceptional circumstances, Centaur may exercise its discretion so as to permit gifts or hospitality outside these parameters. Such discretion is exercised by the CEO or GFD.

Definitions

'Connected Person' means any organisation or individual (other than an officer or employee of Centaur) who has had, has, or may have any connection with or influence over the business of Centaur.

'Gift' means a financial or other benefit, offered, given, solicited or received without any obligation to provide any benefit in return.

'Hospitality' means the offering or providing any facility either free or at a reduced rate which is designed to increase the comfort and pleasure of the person to whom the hospitality is being provided. For example free or reduced rate entertainment, meals, accommodation, travel, and car hire.

Facilitation Payments

'Facilitation' or 'grease' payments are any payments, no matter how small, made to secure or speed up routine actions, usually by public officials, such as issuing permits, immigration controls, providing services or releasing goods held in customs.

Centaur prohibits facilitation payments, as these are bribes and illegal.

It is also our policy that we work to ensure that our agents and other intermediaries, joint ventures and consortia, contractors and suppliers do not make facilitation payments on our behalf.

If you have doubts about a payment and suspect that it might be considered a facilitation payment, only make the payment if the official or third party can provide a formal receipt or written confirmation of its legality. If practicable, obtain approval from Head of Legal for the payment.

If a demand is accompanied by a threat of physical harm then put safety first, make the payment and report the circumstances and amount of the payment immediately to Head of Legal.

Sponsorship

Centaur welcomes the opportunity to develop constructive relationships with external organisations and may provide sponsorship, for example, to sporting or cultural events.

Any such sponsorship must be:

  • approved by the CEO or GFD.
  • transparent to the public and staff in both organisations; and
  • properly documented.

Care must be taken to ensure that sponsorship is not used as a subterfuge for and does not constitute bribery.

Charitable Donations

Centaur supports registered charities in the communities in which it operates. A donation must be transparent and properly documented. No payment may be made in cash. Care must be taken to ensure that charitable contributions are not used as a subterfuge for and do not constitute bribery.

Political Contributions

Centaur does not grant financial or other support to political parties, political campaign efforts, organisations or individuals engaged in politics as this may be perceived as an attempt to gain an improper business advantage.

If an employee is asked for a political donation in the context of contract discussions, no such donation should be made and the matter should be reported to the CEO immediately.

Agents and other intermediaries

All companies within the Centaur group must comply with the following general principles when appointing agents and other 'intermediaries'. Intermediaries include distributors, suppliers and joint venture parties. It should be noted that Centaur could be liable for the actions of people that act on its behalf.

In making appointments adequate due diligence must be carried out and appropriate and satisfactory references obtained prior to any commitment being entered into. The scope of this of this will vary according to the circumstances and judgment will need to be applied. Clearly dealing with persons in high risk sectors or countries may need more diligence to be undertaken.

General Principles
  1. Selection of an agent or intermediary must be approved by the appropriate line manager.
  2. Entering into a joint venture must only be undertaken with the involvement of Head of Legal
  3. There must be a written agreement setting out all the terms, approved by Head of Legal, which must be available for audit if necessary
  4. The commissions and/or fees provided for in the agreement must be appropriate and reasonable in the context of the products involved and the services to be rendered.
  5. The appointment and contractual arrangements with the agent or intermediary must be legal under the laws of the country in which the parties to the agreement are domiciled and those of the country in which the services are to be performed.
  6. There must be clear provisions governing the period of the contract, its termination and the respective parties' rights on termination.
  7. There must be clear provisions requiring the agent or intermediary to comply with the Group's Anti-Bribery Policy and procedures.
  8. No payments may be made other than in accordance with the contract and on receipt of proper invoices.
  9. No payments may be made in cash.
Conclusion

Compliance with the gifts and hospitality section of this policy is a condition of each officer's and employee's employment contract. Further guidance on how to comply with this will be made available either through training or on the intranet