With so many gas and electricity suppliers now offering their services to businesses in the UK, it can be almost impossible for business owners to keep track.
While the majority of customers continue to choose the ‘big six’ for their business energy deals, there are also competitive rates available from the independent operators in the market. Each supplier has a slightly different service offering to business users, whether that be 100% renewable energy generation, online account management or the cheapest price.
You may also find that not all suppliers compete in every region or for every type of meter. For example, some won’t tender for half hourly meters because of the time and data processing involved.
If you’ve shopped around for home or business energy before, you will most likely be well of aware of the ‘big six’ energy companies. Despite increases in competition reducing their market share, the ‘big six’ remain the largest energy suppliers.
The table below is a list of the “Big Six” business gas and electricity suppliers, their current commercial market share data and their original geographic region.
|Energy Supplier||Geographic Base||Market Share|
|EDF||South East, London||20.4%|
|E.ON (Powergen)||Central, East Midlands||15.9%|
|Southern Electric||South England||12.2%|
Data source: Cornwall Insight. All of these companies can supply any premises throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Eire has their own specific regulated market and arrangements.
Although one of the biggest business energy suppliers may offer you the best deal, businesses shouldn’t assume a member of the ‘big six’ will always be the right choice. It is important to consider the needs of your business before comparing business gas and electricity suppliers.
Some companies only supply electricity while others only deal with the light usage side of the industry for micro and small business owners like shops, offices, and restaurants.
All UK energy suppliers use a different mix of primary fuel sources to generate the electricity you use. The mix is vastly different from each supplier. The graph below shows the different classifications of coal, natural gas, nuclear and renewable sources.
Source: The Big Six suppliers and Ofgem. Each supplier submits their fuel mix data to Ofgem each quarter who also publicly display the results.
This information can be particularly useful for environmentally conscious businesses who want to know more about how their business electricity is produced.
For those businesses who are seeking to reduce the impact the energy they use has on the environment, a green business energy supplier could be the right choice.
Many businesses are still concerned about the cost of switching to a green business energy tariff. However, as more gas and electricity suppliers begin to add green tariffs to their product lists, there are now more affordable green options than ever before.
When you switch to a green business energy tariff, your supplier will match the electricity your business uses with renewable energy which it then feeds back into the National Grid.
This means that as more businesses switch to green energy, the larger percentage of green energy there will be in the national supply.
Over recent years, the market share of independent business energy suppliers has continued to grow.
Independent suppliers offer a range of benefits which can include specialising in green energy or offering no standing charge tariffs.
These suppliers often feature as some of the best rated energy suppliers on the market, regularly outperforming the ‘big six’ in areas including customer service.
There are now hundreds of different companies licensed by the energy regulator Ofgem to provide domestic and commercial buildings electricity supplies.
Source: Ofgem, 2020
If you’ve been with the same supplier for a few years and haven’t renegotiated your rates, it’s likely you will be overpaying for your business energy.
Switching your business energy supplier is one of the easiest ways to manage your outgoings by making significant savings on your energy bills.
If your current contract is coming to end, it’s vital that you shop around for a better deal. The prices quoted on a business energy renewal letter are often much more expensive than a supplier’s best available rate.
Many suppliers are simply hoping that businesses will allow their contracts to roll over onto higher rates without renegotiating.
The good news is that if you are approaching your renewal date, you can switch to a cheaper deal which will begin as soon as your current contract comes to end.
At Business Energy, we aim to offer you access to the widest range of suppliers and tariffs with as little hassle possible.
You can compare and switch your business energy supplier online or if you’d prefer, you can speak to one of our expert advisers over the phone.
All we need from you is your business address, the name of your current supplier and your average monthly bills. Our innovative comparison engine will then provide a range of energy contracts lasting from one to five years.
Once you’ve chosen the supplier that’s right for you, our dedicated team will handle the full switching process on your behalf, allowing you to focus on running your business.
No matter which business energy supplier you choose, there will be no change to your gas and electricity supply.
As with domestic energy, all providers share the same cables and pipes, so your supply won’t be interrupted when switching.
The only difference you will notice is a reduction in your energy costs at the end of each month.
At Business Energy, we will not charge you for using our comparison service.
Once you have compared gas and electricity suppliers, you are under no obligation to go ahead with the switch.
The process of switching your business gas and electricity will often take longer than domestic switches. Businesses should be prepared for the process to take around 4-6 weeks.
However, if you are approaching the end of your energy contract, you can compare suppliers and agree a new contract to start as soon as your current contract ends.
Your MPAN number can usually be found at the top left or bottom right corner of your electricity bill. It will begin with a capital ‘S’ followed by numbers displayed in seven small boxes.
It is an electricity number which is unique to your premises and is used by energy companies to help calculate your electricity rates.
The first two numbers of your MPAN number indicate the type of electricity meter installed at your premises. For example, if your number begins ‘00’ you will have a half hourly meter installed.
Copyright © 2020 BusinessEnergy.com All rights reserved. BusinessEnergy is an energy intermediary and not a supplier. The UK trading name follows the Utilities Intermediaries Association code of conduct and Ofgem policies. All suppliers logos are trademarks of their respective owners.
Percentage energy savings quoted are against customers who let their last contract renew automatically.