Page 1

newsletter April / MAY 2014

Giving you the power to change


2

April/May 2014

Welcome There has been a lot of change this year in the energy market as well as within our own businesses. I have therefore decided that it is time to have our own newsletter to keep all of our partners up to speed with what we are doing to address market issues and to highlight any risks or opportunities that are present in both the Domestic and Business Energy Markets. We plan to produce this newsletter on a monthly basis and if you would like to contribute an article please drop an email to our new Marketing Executive Kirstin Rhymer with the article attached and given it is suitable we will try and include it into our next newsletter. Equally if you have an issue with how we are performing or think we could perform better by doing something different please let us know again by dropping an email to Kirstin. We want to offer you the best online energy comparator experience possible and we can only do that by hearing both the good and the bad.


April/May 2014

3

Market news OFGEM have made it easier for consumers to understand and compare energy tariffs by introducing SIMPLER CLEARER FAIRER; this will allow domestic consumers to make more informed choices over their gas and electricity supply.

Simpler Clearer Fairer SIMPLER ӹӹ Stopping complex tiered tariffs- Suppliers will now only be allowed to have one structure for tariffs – a unit rate (or unit rates for time of use tariffs) and standing charge, which can be zero. This will make tariffs more consistent and easier to compare. ӹӹ Making choosing a new deal simpler- Consumers will only have to choose from four core tariffs for gas and four for electricity. ӹӹ Cash discounts will be simplified - Suppliers will only be able to offer two cash discounts, one for dual fuel (where a consumer takes gas and electricity from the same supplier) and one for managing an account online. These will be displayed in a simple pounds-per-year format. OFGEM have banned restrictive discounts which made it difficult to compare the costs of tariffs

Clearer ӹӹ Existing suppliers will advise customers regularly in writing which tariff is cheapest for them ӹӹ Customers will receive more informative bills which will contain key information about the tariff and energy consumption. Having this to hand will help the consumer in comparing other options available in the market. ӹӹ Annual Statements will contain a range of useful information, in an easy to understand form. They will include key facts about tariffs: rates, discounts, tariff end date and whether termination fees apply. They will also include useful information on how to switch suppliers. ӹӹ When suppliers notify of a price increase, they will have to spell out what that means in pounds and pence. This will make it easier for the consumer to understand the impact such a change will have.


4

April/May 2014

Fairer To help rebuild consumer confidence, since 26 August last year suppliers have had to meet OFGEM’s tough new standards of conduct so that domestic consumers receive fairer-treatment.   The onus is on suppliers to embed fair treatment of consumers in every level of their organisation. Any brokers or third party intermediaries that represent suppliers are also bound by the standards of conduct . ӹӹ Suppliers are required to carry out these actions in an honest, transparent and professional manner. They must make sure that any information given to consumers is clear, easy to understand and written in jargon-free language. ӹӹ Suppliers will have to make it easy for consumers to contact them and act promptly and courteously to put things right. ӹӹ Suppliers will have to publish statements each year clearly showing the actions they are taking to treat consumers fairly. Non-compliance with the new regulations will result in fines from OFGEM.


April/May 2014

5

SUPPLIER NEWS Energylinx always strives to include all energy suppli-

tice that will come through around 120 days before their

ers and you will find suppliers on an Energylinx platform

contract is due to finish. If a customer does not provide

that you most likely will not find anywhere else. Energy

a termination notice in accordance with their contractual

suppliers like Glide Energy and Zog Energy seem to be

terms their contract will rollover and any application to a

missing from platforms that claim to ‘compare the whole

new supplier will be rejected.

market’. With another eight new entrants around the corner we wonder how long it will be until TPIs are required

Customers who have requested an email from us to re-

to carry a mandatory warning if they do not cover whole

mind them of their contract ending will receive an email

of the market.

from their selected comparator which will offer them the option to utilise the service again. It is worth keeping in

Energylinx for Business now has 15 suppliers on board

mind that if a business has longer than 120 days left in

with Axis and EDF recently joining our supply panel. We

their contract then they will not see an accurate compar-

believe we offer the widest choice of on-line business

ison position, as not all suppliers provide pricing date in

energy supply in the UK. Suppliers continue to provide

excess of 120 days forward and thus not all will appear

prices updates on a weekly basis.

on the platform.

ADMINISTRATION Energylinx for Business would like to remind affiliates

Affiliates should be aware that there are some sup-

that customers wishing to switch suppliers have to pro-

pliers who will decline applications from businesses

vide written termination of their contract to their current

in certain sectors; for example pubs or takeaways.

supplier within the timescale specified in their current

Affiliate partners should make sure that there is no

contract. Customers will be guided by their renewal no-

reason a transfer would be rejected on this basis.


6

April/May 2014

Platform News

Statistics for Energylinx for Business trading 2014 The platform has seen excellent growth statistics over the first 3 months of the year and this is forecast to continue with more SME businesses switching on-line and the continued growth of the affiliate partner network. Despcription

January

February

March

Traffic Growth Month on Month %

+58%

+21%

+57%

Quotes Growth Month on Month %

+50%

+40%

+80%

Applications Growth Month on %

+50%

+88%

+100%

The Energylinx for Business platform now allows business customers to sign their transfer applications and DD mandates electronically for the majority of suppliers. However, affiliates should be aware that for certain suppliers will still require signed documentation which will have to be signed and submitted within 5 days of agreeing the transfer, otherwise the application will be rejected.

New website design We are delighted to announce the launch of our new web site design. This was brought about to achieve two goals: ӹӹ Compliance with RMR (Retail Market Review) This meant a change in terminology used and how things like unit rates are displayed to the customer, along with a new piece of information - the TCR (Tariff Comparison Rate). The TCR is designed a bit like APR, and has been created with the intention to allow customers to compare one tariff against another and select the most appropriate by looking at one single piece of information. We like the concept and fully support the motives underlying it. However, we believe that while well intentioned in its current form it adds confusion. All our platform comparison results come with PTCR (a Personal Tariff Comparison Rate) which we believe is a more accurate comparison statistic and is much more like APR as it is personal to the user. PTCRs were included in the original RMR scope, then removed - we believe that they, will and should, be back. ӹӹ Increasing conversion rates We have always had market leading conversion rates but we wanted to take this a stage further by enhancing the platform and making it even easier. As a result, we have seen daily conversion rates significantly excess of 30%, recently peaking at 41.2%. The average for the period since the launch of the website is circa 25%. We do not believe any other TPI is experiencing conversion metrics of this level.


April/May 2014

OFGEM ACCREDIATION AUDIT Energylinx received the results of the latest audit and are pleased to report that we have been provided with an absolutely clean bill of health, as has been the case with the last four audits. We would like to see all audit results published as we believe that customers have the right to know who gets it right and who presents incorrect information in the marketplace. It’s all very well fixing it during or following an audit but we question why a TPI can create incorrect prices and continue to operate in the market without sanction or transparency of previous failings.

RMR COMPLIANCE Energylinx platforms became 100% RMR complaint (Retail Market Review), almost a month earlier than the 31st March 2014 requirement. The impact is that we now provide Personal Projections as opposed to quotes or estimates. We are called a TPI (Third Party Intermediary) as opposed to a price comparison service. All tariffs come with a TCR (Tariff Comparison Rate) (unless it is an economy 7 comparison as OFGEM currently believe this to be out of scope) and we provide all the information on a TIL (Tariff Information Label).It sounds exceptionally complex and fair to say with anything new we believe that various parties in the market still have some incorrect information. But at least everyone ought to be doing something similar.

7


8

April/May 2014

OFGEM AND DECC MARKET REVIEWS

Energylinx continues to lobby extensively to ensure

We also are pushing hard to have transparency on

that UK domestic energy market is as transparent

supplier commissions. We want to display them

as possible ensuring that all customers have the

on our web platforms as we believe that it is the

opportunity to find easily the very best deal for their

customer’s right to know that we earn a fee and we

home. With 30 supplier brands in the market and

should not be ashamed of being paid that fee. Un-

with 8 more known to be coming to market in the

surprisingly some of our peers are very quiet on this

near future, transparency is key and we lobby hard

issue! Watch this space for update. We believe that

to ensure that a customer using a competitor plat-

full transparency will occur in 2014.

form where not all suppliers are represented clearly knows that they are only seeing part of the market.


April/May 2014

9

FSB AWARDS AWARDS Energylinx for Business is delighted to announce that it has reached the final of Online Business of the Year at the Federation of Small Businesses WorldPlay UK Business Awards. The awards are part of celebrating business Britain, which is designed to help businesses get recognition and help inspire other business owners through the UK. The awards take place in The Waldorf Hilton on May 21st and Bruce Laird, Chief Operating Officer of Energylinx for Business, along with Kate Rose, Head of Energy at Confused.com, will be attending. You will be able to read up on how we got on in next month’s newsletter.


10

April/May 2014

ENERGYLINX Delighted to be of service to you!


April/May 2014

11

MEET THE TEAM

KiRstin Rhymer

David Morrison

If you have any feedback or would like something com-

For any affiliate related queries, please email:

municated in the next newsletter, please email:

kirstin.rhymer@energylinxforbusiness.co.uk

david.morrison@energylinxforbusiness.co.uk

MARIE FARMER

caroline archibald

If you have any feedback or would like something com-

For any affiliate related queries, please email:

municated in the next newsletter, please email: Ustianim fugia sam quiaspe volorpo rerumquo odite ditendi gendis prepudio ipsum volup-

marie.farmer@energylinx.co.uk caroline.archibald@ taquas cum inctiur, cone pratior archil ilibus eostioreius maximus.co.uk solorrunt.


ENergylinx giving you the power to change

ENERGYLINX for business Limited

Energylinx Limited

The e-Centre

The e-Centre

Cooperage Way Business Village

Cooperage Way Business Village

Alloa

Alloa

FK10 3LP

FK10 3LP

facebook.com/EnergylinxForBusiness

facebook.com/energylinx.advice

twitter.com/EforB_Ltd

twitter.com/Energylinx

energylinx.tumblr.com/eforb

linkedin.com/company/energylinx

Newsletter wip helvetica