FOR: FIRST UTILITY
First Utility Continues to Grow Strongly in 2012MAY 15, 2012 - 06:11 ET
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - May 15, 2012) - First Utility (http://www.first-utility.com) was named 21st in the Virgin Fast Track 100 at the end of 2011. The table compiles the 100 British privately-owned companies with the fastest-growing sales. First Utility entered the top 25 for the first time as its sales grew at 115% a year from £6.1m in 2007 to £60.5m in 2011.
2012 has seen the company pick up where it left off, with the introduction of a new energy saving programme, the launch of the UK's cheapest energy tariff and a revamped customer service function.
Writing in The Sunday Times on 19th February 2012, journalist Ali Hussain commented: "First Utility has been the cheapest provider since October last year. Last week it launched iSave v10, the cheapest dual-fuel deal, at £1,027." He went on the explain customer could save an average of £224 a year by switching to the online monthly direct-debit deal.*
Head of customer experience Steve McNeill recently announced a number of changes to improve First Utility customer service. He stated: "I have recruited more staff to improve the responsiveness of our contact centre at peak times with additional staff coming on board over the next few months. We are improving the training of our call centre staff to empower them to resolve queries first time."
"We have implemented new technology to improve access to customer services via web chat, Twitter and email. A dedicated online service team has been created to serve customers who prefer to email or tweet and the online service team are trialling live web chat to determine if customers find it useful."
Last year First Utility announced a partnership with US software vendor Opower to provide UK utility customers with energy-saving tools and advice tailored to their energy usage. The partnership includes plans to offer services such as text messages or emails to help UK customers make decisions about their energy needs. The programme is set for launch later in 2012. First Utility has previously stated the tools provided by the partnership could potentially save UK customers £400m a year.
Learn more about First Utility at: http://www.first-utility.com/
About First Utility
First Utility is the smarter independent utilities supplier, offering gas and electricity services to a range of consumer and business customers. It is the only energy provider to roll out smart meters to all its customers, throughout the UK. It is through the use of smart metering technology that First Utility can empower consumers to manage and reduce their own energy consumption and bills. First Utility is headquartered in Warwick.
|*The £224 saving quoted for First Utility's iSave v10 dual fuel tariff was published in The Sunday Times with the statement;|
|"Switching to First Utility's iSave v10 scheme, an online-only, monthly direct-debit deal costing £1027 [on average] annually, you save £224 a year ..." (Hussain, 2012, p.4d)|
|Hussain, A, 2012. How To Beat The Income Squeeze. The Sunday Times (Money Supplement), Sunday 18 March, p.4d.|
|On the topic of First Utility's iSave v10 dual fuel tariff being the cheapest The Sunday Times has stated;|
|"First Utility has been the cheapest provider since October last year. Last week it launched iSave v10, the cheapest dual-fuel deal, at £1027 ..." (Hussain, 2012, p.5b|
|Hussain, A, 2012. Consumers Urged to Take Power Away from the Big Six. The Sunday Times (Money Supplement), Sunday 19 February, p.5b.|
|Electricity and gas prices vary by region. £1,027 is the average annual bill across all regions of the UK, inclusive of dual fuel discount at 13% (capped at £80 for Electricity & £100 for Gas inc VAT) and based on average energy consumption per year of 3,300 kWh for electricity & 16,500 kWh for gas.|