Controversies surrounding their customer service record and an investigation into benefiting millions from a collapsed warranty scheme have not harmed Scottish Power. The energy provider, which makes up one of the United Kingdom’s Big Six energy companies, has revealed that there has been no change in the number of customers they are supplying to so far this year.
The utility company, which is owned and run by the Spanish company Iberdrola, has 2.2 million customers for gas and another 3.4 million for electricity. This takes the overall figure to the same 5.6 million that they reached in both June and December of last year. The company also reported that its earnings for the first half of the year. This is in spite of the big drop in customers in the winter when Scottish Power hiked its prices.
The steady numbers of Scottish Power are in sharp contrast to the company’s rival SSE which announced it had lost over 100,000 customers over the last three months of 2014. It attempted to combat the loss of customers by freezing its prices, but that did not stop it from dropping below the nine million mark.
Iberdrola said that Scottish Power’s earnings in the United Kingdom rose by 8.5 per cent reaching £192 million. This may be partly down to the face that the company rose gas tariffs by a huge 8.5 per cent and electricity costs by an even greater 9 per cent when the cold snap hit in December of last year.
Scottish Power has not, however, seen quite as much success in its retail supply business as it has its generation business. But the latter has made up for the former, which they claim has benefited from a rise of 11 per cent in the output of renewable energy sources such as solar and wind farms.
Scottish Power is one of the Big Six energy companies in the United Kingdom alongside nPower, EDF, Eon, British Gas and their aforementioned closest rivals SSE. Between them, these companies supply almost 95% of the country’s gas and electricity. However, these businesses are currently under an investigation by the Competition And Markets Authority who wish to know if there is enough competition in the market.
The investigation comes in response to the price hikes during the coldest month of 2013 which many felt was an attempt to exploit customers who were most in need. Many felt it hurt those who were poor and vulnerable the worst.