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SSE launches £15m business customer support fund

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By SSE Energy Solutions
28 September 2023

Business Energy

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SSE today unveils a £15m support fund targeted at businesses struggling with their energy bills.

SSE, which sold its GB household energy business to OVO Energy in 2020, is making the fund available to a range of business customers supplied by its non-domestic energy provider, SSE Energy Solutions.

Customers on longer-term fixed contracts who signed up between 1 August and 31 December 2022 will be eligible for the support, reflecting the fact that wholesale energy prices hit record highs during the second half of 2022.

While some businesses continue to receive government bill support through the Energy Bills Discount Scheme (EBDS), the level of support that most businesses receive this winter will likely be lower than last winter.

This fund is a continuation of the support SSE Energy Solutions has provided to customers throughout the pandemic and the energy price crisis. This support has included the extension of payment term options for struggling customers and shielding some customers from more than £10m of non-commodity industry charges.

Nikki Flanders, Managing Director of SSE’s customer businesses (GB&IRL), said: “With government energy support winding down, we believe this is the right time to step up our customer support by providing a dedicated fund.

Despite the fact that wholesale energy prices have fallen considerably from last year’s highs, they still remain double the historic norm, which we understand is challenging for many businesses.

Combined with the existing support for our customers, this represents the most comprehensive package of financial assistance to help businesses with their energy bills anywhere in the GB non-domestic market.”*

Details of the scheme

Direct recipients of money from the fund will include:

  • Around 20,000 customers on fixed-term energy contracts agreed between 1 August and 31 December 2022. These customers will be credited with £500 to their account or 25% of their estimated annual bill, whichever is lower.
  • Around 8,000 businesses with registered charitable status will receive a £500 credit to their account.
  • Domestic-like premises on non-domestic contracts or businesses in buildings with a shared residential purpose, such as a pub with a flat above, that are in debt. These customers will be credited with £500 to their account or 25% of their estimated annual bill, whichever is lower.

SSE will automatically apply support to the bills of eligible customers from 1 October 2023 and 31 March 2024 and write to them directly.

In an effort to encourage businesses to take simple steps to help improve their energy efficiency and lower their costs, SSE is also asking its customers that do not have smart meters to book an installation.

Smart meters are an important part of a business’ toolkit in monitoring, managing and ultimately reducing or shifting energy consumption to reduce costs and emissions.

*Based on the £15m fund and shielding some customers from £10m of non-commodity costs

About SSE Energy Solutions

SSE Energy Solutions is a non-domestic energy supplier, which provides gas and electricity to businesses of all sizes across Great Britain, supplying around 420,000 separate metering points. The business also provides distributed energy infrastructure such as private networks, behind-the-meter generation, heat networks and EV charging, and related digital services needed to help businesses and public sector customers transition to a low-carbon future.

The business is part of SSE plc, the FTSE-30 company headquartered in Perth, Scotland and with interests across the UK and Ireland, Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. We are a leading generator of renewable electricity and one of the largest electricity network companies in the UK. We develop, own and operate low carbon infrastructure to support the low-carbon transition. This includes onshore and offshore wind, hydro power, electricity transmission and distribution grids, and efficient gas-fired generation, where we are at the leading edge of decarbonisation with developments in carbon capture and storage and hydrogen. We also provide energy products and services for businesses.

In November 2021, SSE announced a fully funded, £12.5bn Net Zero Acceleration Programme, which will see us expand on our ambition to be the UK’s clean energy champion, In May 2023 this plan was updated with a fully funded £18bn five-year investment plan to 2027. Our investment could total up to £40bn across the decade to 2031/32.