Tired of overpaying on your energy bills? According to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), 7 out of 10 of UK residents who don’t regularly switch their gas and electricity tariffs could be missing out on savings of of around £300/year or more on their energy bills. “The problem with this market is that there are huge savings to be had which people are just not accessing because this market is so difficult to access”, explained Roger Witcomb, Chair of the CMA’s energy market investigation.
BBC reporter Michael Robinson decided to visit Flipper—a new, London-based startup—which saves their members money on their energy bills by automatically finding and switching them to the best available energy deals. Michael interviewed Flipper CEO Talal Fathallah to find out more.
“So how does Flipper work?”
"Flipper will automatically find and switch you to the best deal on the market. Once you’ve signed up, we pull in your consumption data directly from your energy provider - no work required on the customer side to do that. We then find you a quote within one working day, and you will receive an email telling you how much money you've saved, who your new provider is and all the important information about your new deal."
“So it happens automatically - the customer doesn’t have to do anything?”
“They can just sit back and enjoy the best deal on their energy on an on going basis.”
“So the customer doesn’t choose the new provider?”
“No, but they do get to avoid suppliers they don’t like. Also, if a customer is unhappy with a supplier that we have switched them to, they can just drop us an email and we’ll switch them to another supplier straight away. No questions asked.”
“For me, the thing that really separates you from all the other switching sites is that you say you won’t take commission. How can you run a business without it?”
“We charge our customers
£25 a year for access to the service. We won’t charge unless we have a deal
that saves at least £50 per year, so by signing up you’re effectively guaranteed
£25 of benefit. That in itself is plenty to sustain us as a business.
We’ve actually been offered commission by some energy companies but we turned it down; the reason being that there would be a real conflict of interest for us if we were to accept commission payments.”
"Why is that?"
"Well, handling all the switching on someone’s behalf means that we get to choose who their supplier is, which heightens the risk that if we were to be receiving commission payments from anyone that we might not act purely in the customers interests. Our model allows us to be 100% impartial and act solely with the customers interests in mind."