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Regulator gives OVO go ahead

Energy regulator Ofgem has today given OVO Energy the all clear to continue offering Direct Debit customers monthly interest reward payments on gas and electricity accounts in credit.

OVO, one of the fastest growing independent suppliers in the UK, had been paying out a 3% interest reward to customers since July 2010.  In March this year however, Ofgem informed OVO that this went against a new licence condition introduced as part of the regulator’s Retail Market Review.

The regulator asked OVO to either remove the 3% interest or apply for a ‘derogation’ for formal permission to continue. The derogation application was submitted in August and Ofgem announced yesterday that it had been approved.

OVO Energy has nearly 350,000 energy accounts eligible for interest reward payments on their credit balances and has paid out over £1.3 million in interest rewards to these customers in 2014.* They are still the only energy company to reward customers for remaining in credit.

Jessica Lennard, Head of Corporate affairs at OVO Energy explains:

“We set out to make the energy market a fairer, happier place for customers and the interest reward is something they have always told us is really important to them, so we were committed to fighting for it. 

“Regulations should work in customers’ best interests, but it never felt right to us that the rules allow a supplier to charge interest when an account is in debit, but not reward customers when they are in credit.  We welcome the pragmatic, fair decision Ofgem has made in this case.”

ENDS

Media contacts:
Shula Smith | Head of PR and Communications | 07863 342317

Notes:

  • *Figures cover 1st January 2014 – 1 November 2014
  • OVO Energy estimates how much gas and electricity a customer will use during the year and then splits this into 12 equal payments. Then 3% interest reward is paid on customer account balances that remain in credit after OVO Energy has calculated their bill.
  • When OVO Energy sets up a customer’s statement, it will credit the account with 3% OVO Interest Reward for the number of days between statements. Divide the number of days between statements by 365, then multiply that by three to see what percentage the customer will get each time.
  • Our T&Cs prevent customers from using their OVO account to build up credit balances simply to gain interest.
  • We refund all balances on request as long as it leaves enough to pay for next month's energy.
  • In the last six months we have proactively reviewed down 33,000 direct debits.
  • Standard time for refunds is 7-10 days but if a customer needs it faster we obviously do all we can to accommodate this.
  • Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 league table ranked Ovo Energy as Britain’s 10th fastest-growing private company, and the top company in the South West region.


About OVO Energy

Headquartered in Bristol, OVO Energy is one of the leading independent suppliers in the UK retail market. Since it entered the market in 2009, it’s grown to 400,000 customers (720,000 customer accounts), created over 600 jobs and is currently recruiting for over 120 more.

OVO’s guiding principles are simplicity, transparency and fairness in all of its operations: make the energy industry easier for consumers to understand and make sure prices reflect the actual cost of doing business so customers know they’re getting a good deal.

 

For more information, please see: www.ovoenergy.com

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O​VO​ Energy Ltd, registered office 1 Rivergate Temple Quay Bristol, BS1 6ED, company no. 06890795 registered in England and Wales, VAT No. 100119879

Additional terms and conditions
Please see below for full terms and conditions on 33% renewable electricity, 3% interest rewards, exit fees and saving claims.

 

1Monthly cost - Representative monthly direct debit costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas) paying in advance by direct debit, including online discount.  All rates correct as of 23/08/16, but may go up or down.

2Weekly cost - Representative weekly costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas).  All rates correct as of 23/08/16, but may go up or down.

3Pay Monthly Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYM OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location.

4Pay As You Go Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYG OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location. 

We include almost twice as much renewable electricity as the national average: At least 33% of electricity in all of our tariffs comes from renewable sources. The national average, according to Ofgem as at March 2014 was 16.7%. For more information please visit this page.

33% of your electricity comes from renewable sources: 33% renewable electricity as standard as of 1st April 2015. Renewable electricity is generated from wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydro, biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogas.

3% interest: Calculated at 3% per year, paid monthly based on number of days in credit and the amount left in your account after you’ve paid your bill. OVO Interest Reward is capped at 12 times the amount of the current direct debit amount and is available to customers paying by advance direct debit. Terms apply: http://www.ovoenergy.com/terms/

95% of new customers save when switching to OVO: Based on all new customer signups between 01/02/2016 and 31/07/2016

94% of surveyed customers would recommend us: OVO conducted a survey of their customers in between 1st January 2016 and 15th April 2016. Out of 15,312 customers who responded, over 94% rated OVO 6+ when asked 'how likely would you be to recommend us to a friend and family, on a scale of 1 to 10.

Britain's top rated energy provider: Britain's top rated energy provider in the Which? 2015 satisfaction survey. Survey conducted in October 2015. Awarded in January 2016.

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