Hidden costs harming SME community

Energy sector brokers ‘not upfront’ about their commission costs

Amidst growing concern by regulators over the lack of transparency surrounding commissions being charged by brokers who sell energy to small businesses, a new online marketplace, Energy-Scanner, has launched in the UK to empower small business owners to take back control of their energy contracts.

With energy being identified as one of the biggest costs to a small business, alongside employee salaries and rental costs, and recent calls from both the Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) and Ofgem for more transparency in the SME market, getting access to a range of unbiased, straightforward energy prices has been out of reach for already stretched business owners.

“SMEs are the lifeblood of our economy,” said Neil O’Hara, CEO and founder of Energy-Scanner. “We want to see them thrive, rather than be pushed into the wrong energy contract and we want to see more transparency.”

The increasing need for a transparent alternative, forms part of the reason for Energy-Scanner launching in the UK. The service enables SMEs to make a decision on their energy needs from an unbiased list of relevant energy contracts provided by a range of energy companies, depending on their specific requirements. It will also help SMEs to get the most value from their existing energy contract.

“We’re a small business ourselves”, continued O’Hara. “We’ve invested heavily in revolutionary technology that matches a range of energy suppliers’ offers to each SME’s address, and helps them switch to a better energy deal online in just a few minutes. Our technology not only gives us a cost advantage, but means we’ve taken a process that can take 30 minutes on the phone and reduced it down to 3.” Oscar Vickerman, CEO and founder of value comparison website B.heard, said: “As a small business owner, I have found the lack of information available concerning energy costs frustrating. The culmination of time spent negotiating with a broker to agree on the right tariff limited the amount of time I was able to spend on other priorities such as driving revenue and providing a great service to my customers.” “Energy-Scanner isn’t just about comparing energy tariffs,” continued O’Hara. “SME owners are now empowered to make an informed and calculated decision about their energy supply and switch online; something that up to now we have had limited control over.”

Energy-Scanner offers a quick, unbiased and transparent service for small businesses that want to be on top of their energy supply costs, putting trust back into the process of choosing an energy contract.