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Energy regulator moves to protect small and micro-businesses from ‘rogue energy brokers’

“Recent media reports and Ofgem’s latest efforts underline the importance of working with an energy broker who follows an ‘open book’ policy and can provide clients with complete transparency.

“The type of sharp practices we see from some providers, including locking small businesses into poor value long-term contracts for essential gas and electricity, is all-too-often a reality in today’s marketplace,” says Hiren Kanabar, General Manager of Assured Energy. “And it often hits those clients who can least afford being caught out in this way.” But it doesn’t have to be like that, he says: people should never pay more than they should for the energy they use.

“By contrast, we work to our own robust Code of Conduct, and we believe the industry does require proper regulation to help prevent mis-selling. Ofgem needs to take action, and urgently.”

A recent article in The Guardian newspaper1 reported that so-called rogue energy brokers are “conning small businesses out of £2 billion a year” according to documents submitted to the energy regulator. The paper wrote that “Some individual firms are seeking pay outs of up to £1m, according to one claims management firm that is seeking legal settlements for small businesses against their brokers.”

The article continues, “The regulator estimates that businesses, charities and public bodies spend about £25bn to cover their energy bills every year, of which about half is bought through energy brokers.” It’s estimated that around £2.25bn of this is likely to be commission. Ofgem is planning to launch a call for evidence in the coming months to better understand the extent of mis-selling in the market – so watch this space.


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