Co-operative Energy Increases Tariff by 4.5%
By Anne Lewis-Schneider
With three of the Big Six Energy Companies hiking their energy prices to consumers by between 8.2% and 10% Co-operative Energy has announced that they are increasing costs by 4.5%. The co-op has called on its larger rivals to follow their example and consider the needs of their customers before their need for profits. The increase that they have tabled is about half of that announced by three of the Big Six Energy Companies so far over the last two weeks.
Co-Operative Energy is a small company with a customer base of 150,000 and is no match for the bigger energy suppliers, but they have pledged to absorb some of the wholesale buying costs and keeping increases as low as possible. Customers who are currently with Co-operative Energy will only have to pay the increase from January, but all new consumers will have to pay the increased price from 21st October.
Looking at the figures, this equates to an increase of £4.78 per month on the average household bill. This is cheaper than British Gas by £87 annually. The Big Six have all placed the reason for high increases at the door of the government, saying that the increases are unavoidable because of green levies and have also blamed rising energy costs for the increases. British Gas has said that profits made are used to fund investments, but Centrica shareholder dividends reached the £816million mark last year, which was an increase of 7% on the previous year.
Co-operative Energy is a company that is owned by its customers, who benefit from surplus profit sharing. The company has said they are making an attempt to lessen the burden placed on consumers by absorbing a portion of the costs incurred, and has made an appeal to other suppliers to do the same.
Ramsay Dunning, the general manager of Co-operative Energy has said that the company is keeping its increases low to offer consumers a fair price for gas and electricity and has still managed to be competitive against the large energy company’s standard tariffs. He went onto comment that price increases would be used to ensure a continued service to its customers and sustainable business management. If Co-operative Energy can absorb some of the costs and pass this on to their customers then this begs the question of why it cannot be done by the Big Six Energy Companies.
Head Office: EATON HOUSE, STATION ROAD, LEEDS, LS20 8XB Company Registration: 4704157 Vat Registration: 817013852