150,000 Bristol Energy users moved to Together Energy
Bristol Energy was founded by Bristol City Council in 2015, and offered 100% green renewable electricity to customers from 2018.
But it has struggled, posting a loss of £32m before putting itself up for sale in June this year.
It has now been sold to Together Energy for £14m, a move which will see 155,000 domestic Bristol Energy customers transferred over and 110 staff keep their jobs.
Just last month, Bristol Energy’s 4,000 business accounts were sold to Nottingham-based supplier Yü Energy for £1.34m.
Councillor Craig Cheney, deputy mayor and Bristol City Council cabinet member for finance, governance and performance, said: “Throughout this process it has been really important that we find a buyer who will not only offer a good deal for Bristol but also shares similar values. We are therefore delighted that Bristol Energy has been acquired by Together Energy which has proved committed to do the very best for its staff, customers and the environment.”
Paul Richards, CEO of Together Energy ,said: “There are great synergies between both companies and the acquisition is a natural fit to our growth strategy. We are an employer with strong social ethics and in the current climate are delighted to have secured so many jobs.
“We are delighted to welcome Bristol Energy’s customers into the Together family and want to assure them that nothing is changing – tariffs, terms and conditions and how you contact Bristol Energy will all remain consistent. We also recognise the value of the brand and plan to retain it.”
‘Poor customer service record’
While the sale may be a “relief” for Bristol City Council, energy auto-switching site Flipper said this is a “bad move” for customers.
It said it has refused to switch anyone to Together Energy since early 2019 because of the supplier’s poor customer service record.
Mark Gutteridge, CEO of Flipper, said: “More than half of the customer reviews for Together Energy on Trustpilot rate them as ‘bad’, the lowest score possible. So, it is incredible that the city council says they are pleased with the deal and that the new supplier “shares similar values” with them.
“Together Energy are ranked last out of the 35 energy companies reviewed by Which? and 35th out of 41 energy companies looked at by the Citizen’s Advice Bureau.
“While the deal will save 110 jobs and put some money into the coffers of Bristol City Council, customers should expect a big drop in the quality of service.”
Customers are urged to compare energy deals, particularly as there are a number of competitive deals available ahead of the winter season.
Together Energy said nothing is changing for Bristol Energy customers and customer service will continue to be handled by the same staff in Bristol as before the acquisition.
Last week, British Gas’ parent company, Centrica plc, confirmed it will buy the customer base of Nottingham council-run Robin Hood Energy, currently serving around 112,000 domestic customers and 2,600 business customers.