Solarplicity and Cardiff Energy go bust
Two more UK energy suppliers have gone bust, taking the total number of energy suppliers who have ceased trading to 16 since January 2018.
Cardiff Energy, which went bust last week, said in a press release that reasons for its closure were “complex and in part personal and now academic”, and its customers have now been transferred to SSE, Ofgem’s chosen supplier of last resort (SOLR).
If you’re a former Cardiff Energy customer, it’s unlikely that the SSE tariff you’ve been placed on will be offering the most competitive rates, so it’s worth running a price comparison with UKPower and switching to a better deal.
If you’re among Solarplicity’s 7,500 domestic energy customers, or one of it’s 500 business energy customers, Ofgem has appointed EDF Energy as the SOLR - whihc means it's time to switch to a better deal.
My energy supplier has gone bust – what do I do?
When an energy company goes bust, Ofgem will choose a new provider to take over its customers’ contracts. There’ll be no disruption to supply during this point, so if your energy supplier goes bust you’ll never be left without gas and electrcity.
If you’ve been affected by the Solarplicity collapse, Ofgem has now appointed EDF Energy as your new supplier. Now that an SOLR has been found, you should compare deals and switch to a better priced tariff. When Ofgem appoints a new supplier - as it has with EDF Energy in this instance - you’re not tied into a deal with them, so you are free to switch without penalty.
Why has Solarplicity gone bust?
Solarplicity has been in trouble for some time, because of customer complaints and unpaid bills for renewable energy subsidies, which Solarplicity collected from customers but failed to pass on to the regulator.
After receiving 100,000 complaints last year, the energy ombudsman received 3,324 complaints about Solarplicity this year, 583 of which were in July, and subsequently banned the supplier from taking on new customers, not only because of the volume of complaints, but because it failed to take the required steps to put things right for the customer within the specified timeframe.
Things got worse for the supplier when, two weeks ago lost the vast majority of its customers to a rival firm, selling 43,000 accounts to Toto Energy. This left the company with just 7,500 domestic customers and 7,500 business accounts. These accounts will now be moved across to another supplier when the energy regulator appoints an SOLR.
David Elbourne, the chief executive of Solarplicity, blamed its demise on the “overcrowded, highly regulated market” and the regulator’s “overly onerous interventions”, but said the business would continue to function, but instead now focus on the core strengths in its solar panel business.
Click here to run an energy price comparison, and see if you could be paying less for your gas and electricity.