EMBARGOED until 00:01, 16 February
Bristol Energy, the first municipal energy company in the South West and one of the first in the country, is officially open for business. The energy supply company was created by Bristol City Council in 2015 to be a force for social good. It is leading the way as a new model of energy company that contributes to the wellbeing of local communities.
With a fundamental belief in social responsibility, Bristol Energy will reinvest profits back into its founding city, supporting council services to citizens and community projects. The company is looking to support local renewable energy generators and to link with initiatives with a shared ethos across the city and region.
Although the social benefits of the company will be focused on Bristol’s heartland, Bristol Energy is for people across Great Britain. Offering competitive tariffs and great customer service, the company is also working to address accessibility. It will be looking to reach out to communities locally, but will also be offering tailored products and services to suit its broad range of national customers. Bristol Energy is being kicked off with a fairly priced one year fixed tariff and standard variable tariff. New socially motivated tariffs will follow in 2016.
Managing Director, Peter Haigh, said: “This is a new era for the sector, and Bristol Energy is proud to set itself apart from other energy companies as a force for social good. We believe that energy customers, businesses and communities deserve something better, now and into the future - and this means doing things differently. I really believe people will want to get behind us. We have to pay energy bills anyway, so why not pay them to a company that will spend the profits on local services and projects?
“Our growing Bristol Energy team has worked incredibly hard to get us to the point where people can make a no-fuss switch to us through our website. One of our next steps will be to find ways to help the least advantaged energy consumers through our products and services and to build partnerships with local renewable generators. In the longer term, I can’t wait to see the difference our profits will make to local Bristol communities.”
Mayor of Bristol, George Ferguson, said: “I am now switching my electricity and gas supply to Bristol Energy - it could not be easier - just a few clicks.
“By switching, people become part of this very special initiative that could really make a difference to the lives of Bristol’s citizens. I’m proud to be one of them and would like to thank all current and future customers for helping to make us a more resilient city while helping themselves to a better deal!"
Bristol Energy customer Simon Bird considered switching when he moved into his flat in South Bristol 18 months ago.
“I was keen to switch suppliers when we moved but have waited for Bristol Energy to come online as I fully believe in the profits being kept in the city. To me this makes total sense.
“So far the process has been really straightforward and I’m recommending to my landlord that he looks at Bristol Energy for all his tenants. I should be saving a quarter of my annual bill by switching to Bristol Energy so it’s definitely worth it.”
Peter Haigh added: “Around 40,000 households in Bristol have never switched supplier before, and so are likely to be paying higher standard variable tariffs. Looking at prices in early February, the average dual fuel customer in Bristol who has never switched can expect to save at least £276 on their annual energy bill by signing up to our one year fixed tariff, choosing to pay by direct debit and to receive bills online. This could mean savings of around £11m across the city!”
“Bristol Energy’s ethos is built upon values of fairness and equality. Our customers can also expect great customer service, with those in Bristol and the South West able to meet our customer care team face-to-face later this year.”
To find out more about Bristol Energy, or to switch, please visit: www.bristol-energy.co.uk.
Notes to editors
- Bristol Energy supplies gas and electricity across GB. It currently buys its energy on the market, with the aim of introducing locally generated renewable energy into its supply as soon as possible.
- Bristol Energy’s customer care centre will be based Bristol’s waterfront, in place of Bristol 2015’s Lab and will feature programmes of events in partnership with local initiatives, organisations and companies with a shared ethos.
- Plans within Bristol City Council to set up an energy company for the city began in 2010. On 3 February 2015, a Cabinet decision was taken to produce a business plan, which was formally approved in the 6 July 2015 Cabinet meeting. Bristol Energy was given the green light to begin unrestricted trading in December 2015.
- You can follow Bristol Energy on Twitter and LinkedIn and Facebook for the latest news.
Peter Haigh, Managing Director of Bristol Energy, will be available for:
- Pre-recorded interviews on Thursday, 11 February, from 12:00-14:30 (20 minute slots)
- Live interviews on Tuesday 16 February, between: