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Co-operative Energy launches ground-breaking self-serve energy tariff

Posted on 17 July 2014

Leading energy provider, Co-operative Energy has today unveiled a cost-saving, self-serve energy tariff – the first of its kind in the industry.

The new product called ‘Fair and Square’ will be the cheapest energy tariff in the UK based on the national average at a dual fuel price of £989* per annum, and the cheapest in the majority of the regions, because of its unique ‘self-serve’ element.

Conditions of the product mean that customers will be required to take their own meter readings, have to have a dual fuel supply from Co-operative Energy, only be able to pay by direct debit and will only be able to access their billing information online. If customers find they are no longer able to manage, they will be moved on to the standard Co-operative Energy tariff. 

Ramsay Dunning, group general manager, Co-operative Energy explained: “Fair and Square is a ‘no frills’ energy product where we have stripped out the additional customer service elements to bring the cost down as low as we can. The energy itself is exactly the same, but for a little more effort, customers can benefit from the cheapest tariff in the UK.

“Fair and Square will appeal to customers who manage their affairs online and are prepared to take meter readings to get regular accurate bills. They will be organised about their bills and keen to get the very best deal on the energy they buy. We felt it was only fair to give them a product that suited the way they want to manage their energy bills.”

He added: “We know Fair and Square isn’t for everyone but from talking to our customers we know there are plenty of people who are willing to put the effort in to getting themselves the very best deal. Of course the standard product remains best in class value.”

The tariff will be available to 10,000 new customers on a first-come-first-served basis.

Ramsay concluded: “We know there’s a strong appetite for this kind of product among a cost-conscious group of consumers but what we don’t know is how many people will want this type of self-serve product once they know it is available on the market. The important thing is that we are giving people a choice. That’s what Fair and Square is all about.”

The launch of Fair and Square follows last week’s news that Co-operative Energy is to give its customers the choice of where their energy comes from with the new User Chooser scheme.

The User Chooser initiative means customers can choose the exact mix of the different types of energy sources and even the precise generators that it will buy the energy from.

Thought to be the first of its kind in the UK energy market, User Chooser is designed to give the power to choose back to the customer – as you would expect from a business that is owned by and responsible to its customers.

Co-operative Energy currently has power purchase agreements with around 30 generators, 15 of which are owned by the community – a number which is growing all the time. It continues to source energy from a range of different types of renewable generators, including community-owned wind farms at Harlock Hill in Cumbria, Westmill in Oxfordshire and Great Dunkilns in the Forest Of Dean, Gloucestershire.

Co-operative Energy’s promise to its customers is to buy enough units from each source to match its customers’ choices, over the course of a year. Customers will not pay any additional cost for the User Chooser scheme. User Chooser will be available as part of the Fair and Square tariff.

Co-operative Energy is part of The Midcounties Co-operative, the largest independent co-operative in the UK, owned by over half a million members. Co-operative Energy is a national business, covering the whole of England, Wales and Scotland.

The new Fair and Square tariff is offered through the Co-operative Energy website.

The User Chooser scheme is available via the energy hub at: www.cooperativeenergyhub.co.uk

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