"Creating a level playing field in the retail energy market" published
ScottishPower has commissioned Baringa, the business consultancy, to analyse whether a level playing field exists in the domestic energy retail market. The report makes 2 findings:
- Smaller suppliers exempt from participating in government schemes like the Warm Home Discount and Energy Company Obligation benefit from a competitive advantage of £36 per dual fuel customer a year.
- Evidence from Ofgem publications indicates that average customer cost to serve is likely to be significantly higher for the six large energy suppliers than for the independent suppliers. Crucially, survey results also suggest that controlling for the mix of payment method in the customer base of suppliers may not be sufficient to explain the differences in costs. Hence, differences are likely to be attributable to underlying differences in the characteristics of customers belonging to these respective groups of suppliers. This was corroborated by analysis of ScottishPower data which found that for one particular demographic group costs were more than £150 higher per dual fuel customer than for other customers with the same type of account.
The full report with its recommendations can be read here.