Octopus Energy

Octopus Energy is an electricity and gas supplier in the United Kingdom, established in 2015 as a subsidiary of Octopus Group, a British asset management company. As of March 2019, the company has over 600,000 domestic and business customers.

Octopus Energy
Private
IndustryElectricity and gas supply
Founded2015
Headquarters1 Upper James Street, London W1F 9DE
Area served
United Kingdom
Key people
Greg Jackson (CEO)
Revenue
  • Increase £129m (2018)
  • £35m (2017)
ParentOctopus Group
Websiteoctopus.energy

History

Octopus Energy was established in August 2015 as a subsidiary of Octopus Capital Limited.[1] Trading began in December 2015.[2] The company's founder and Chief Executive Officer is Greg Jackson.[3]

By April 2018, the company had 198,000 customers and had made an energy procurement deal with Shell.[4] Later in 2018, Octopus gained the 100,000 customers of Iresa Limited, under Ofgem's "supplier of last resort" process, after Iresa ceased trading.[5] The same year, Octopus replaced SSE as the energy supplier for M&S Energy, a brand of Marks & Spencer,[6] and bought Affect Energy, which had 22,000 customers.[7] In March 2019, Octopus had more than 600,000 customers.[8]

In both 2018 and 2019, Octopus was the only energy supplier to earn "Recommended Provider" status from the Which? consumer organisation.[9]

Operations

The company does not generate gas or electricity, instead making purchases on the wholesale market. Octopus Group claims to be the UK's largest investor in solar farms, and also invests in wind power and anaerobic digesters.[10][11] As of 2019, Octopus Energy stated that all its electricity came from renewable sources, and it offered a "green" gas tariff with carbon offsetting.[12]

Besides industry-standard fixed and variable tariffs, the company is known for innovative tariffs which are made possible by the national rollout of smart meters. These include:

  • Octopus Tracker – gas and electricity prices change every day, and are based on wholesale prices for that day, with disclosure of overheads and the company's profit margin.[13]
  • Octopus Agile – electricity prices change every half hour, according to a schedule published the previous day, determined from wholesale prices. The price occasionally goes negative (i.e. customers are paid to use electricity) at times of high generation and low demand.[14]
  • Octopus Go – a tariff with a reduced rate for an overnight period, intended for owners of electric vehicles.[15]

The company claims to treat customers more fairly than the "Big Six" suppliers.[16][17]

In March 2019, Octopus Energy announced it had partnered with Amazon's Alexa virtual assistant, to optimise home energy use through the Agile Octopus time-of-use tariff.[18]

References

  1. ^ "Octopus Energy Limited". Companies House. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  2. ^ "Annual report 2015–2016". Companies House. 30 April 2016. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  3. ^ "About Octopus Group". Octopus Group. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  4. ^ "Annual report 2017–18". Companies House. 30 April 2018. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  5. ^ Knapman, Helen (1 August 2018). "Octopus Energy to take on 100,000 Iresa customers". Moneywise. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  6. ^ Key, Alys (18 July 2018). "M&S cuts ties with Big Six as it partners with Octopus for new energy brand". City A.M. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  7. ^ Bairstow, Jonny (5 September 2018). "Octopus Energy buys Affect Energy". Energy Live News. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  8. ^ Gausden, Grace (19 March 2019). "Octopus to use Alexa to let customers monitor energy usage". This is Money. Retrieved 5 May 2019.
  9. ^ "Energy Companies: Which? Recommended Providers". Which?. January 2019. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  10. ^ "What We Invest In: Energy". Octopus Investments. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  11. ^ "Octopus Investments increases solar portfolio financing". Reuters. 7 November 2017. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  12. ^ "About us". Octopus Energy. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  13. ^ Pratt, David (10 May 2017). "Octopus offers transparency with wholesale price tariff". Current News. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  14. ^ Brignall, Miles (22 February 2018). "Energy company promises to pay customers to use electricity". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  15. ^ Roberg, Torjus (9 June 2018). "New energy tariff aims to slash charging cost for electric vehicle owners". City A.M. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  16. ^ Robinson, Michael (9 September 2016). "Energy deal 'tease and squeeze' tactics". BBC News: Business. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
  17. ^ Moulds, Josephine (10 October 2016). "David and Goliath struggle over national transfer of power". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
  18. ^ Bairstow, Jonny (18 March 2019). "Octopus Energy integrates with Amazon Alexa for smart energy use". Energy Live News. Retrieved 23 July 2019.

External links

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Other suppliers

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