- The Big Issue Group and Citroën announce three-year green partnership which will see a fleet of ë-Berlingo and ë-Dispatch vans to distribute magazines across the UK
- The announcement includes a content partnership contract to create impact-led commercial editorial features in print and digital
Today (Monday, 15th August) Big Issue Group (BIG) and Citroën UK have announced a three-year partnership which will see Citroën provide BIG with a fleet of electric light commercial vehicles (e-LCVs). From the full fleet of 16 vans, a quarter will be on the road from today.
The partnership is being brought to life through a multi-channel content partnership, led by BIG’s branded content department and brokered by Publicis Media agency, Starcom UK. It will highlight the meaningful impact the partnership is having on the Group’s frontline services, whilst raising greater awareness of Citroën’s commitment to innovation and the accessibility of electric vehicles.
The content partnership, which runs through to next year, will encompass an initial contract to create impact-led commercial editorial features in print and digital. On top of this, Citroën will be taking exclusive sponsorship rights for The Big Issue’s Future of Transport edition as well as the coveted Top 100 Changemakers List special edition in January 2023.
Media planning and buying was led by Starcom UK which will be activated across several platforms and touchpoints, including print and digital advertorials, Social, Display and PR, in addition to paid social.
The Big Issue will also be producing multimedia cross-platform content, including films, that will bring to life the demonstrable change the EV van range is having on the organisation and its vendors’ lives.
The new all-electric Citroën vans will make the delivery process more sustainable and will help BIG tackle its carbon emissions – which is a key aim of the Group in the face of the worsening climate crisis.
The Big Issue fleet currently cover 350,000 miles annually, transporting over 2 million magazines to 3,300 vendors in a year, from Ullapool through Newcastle, to Lowestoft, London and Birmingham, and over to Penzance and Fishguard.
In the first phase of going electric, Big Issue Group are working with Citroën UK to roll out electric vans in Bristol and Bath for the South-West, Bournemouth covering Dorset, Norwich for East Anglia, and Newcastle for the North-East, adding more over the next three years.
With many cities now becoming Clean Air Zones and charging older vehicles for travelling in city centres to reduce pollution, this partnership has come at a vital time. Due to its zero tailpipe emissions, the new EV fleet will be exempt from most congestion and low-emission zone charges – so Big Issue staff can navigate through busy urban centres without worrying about extra costs. The satnav will also simplify the delivery process, helping staff reach more vendors, more smoothly.
Russell Blackman, Big Issue Group Managing Director of Commercial, said: “Citroën’s market-leading approach to innovation and affordability of electric vehicles is the exact reason why they are the ideal partner to work with Big Issue Group.
“Our partnership will allow us to make even greater strides in the support and services we provide for the most marginalised across the country. In cities and remote, rural locations, we will be able to respond quickly when our vendors need us the most. At Big Issue Group we are excited for the next three years working alongside Citroën to drive change for good.”
Sacha Feldman, Starcom’s Partnerships Director, said: “By partnering with The Big Issue, an organisation with a strong focus on improving people’s lives, this partnership, on and off the road, will demonstrate how these two forward-thinking brands can come together to help the community in a more sustainable way. Citroën powering The Big Issue via a fleet of electric vehicles directly showcases Citroën’s commitment to doing better and going greener.”
Eurig Druce, Citroën’s UK Managing Director, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Big Issue Group in their important work ‘changing lives through enterprise’, and in particular to support their transition to electric vehicles so they can become more sustainable.
“The Big Issue is a fantastic organisation that has been working to improve people’s lives for over 30 years by providing work opportunities – a hand up, not a handout is a philosophy we can definitely get behind.
“I can’t wait to see these vans out on the road, being used as sustainable electric workhorses in support of the Big Issue workforce.”
The special issue covering the new partnership, and including a special Future of Transport supplement inside, is out now, please go out and buy from your local vendor or get a subscription here.
To join Big Issue Group and be part of the solution to change lives, visit: https://www.bigissue.com/changing-lives-through-enterprise