Saturday 25 January 2020 12:01 am

Octopus tops energy supplier rankings for second year in a row

Challenger energy supplier Octopus cemented its hold at the top of consumer group Which?’s annual customer satisfaction survey, as so-called Big Six firms languished down the rankings.

The biggest six energy companies – British Gas, Eon, EDF, Npower, Scottish Power and SSE (now part of Ovo) – all finished in the lower third of the table, with Scottish Power languishing in the bottom three after achieving a lowly customer score of 51 per cent.

By contrast, the top 10 is made up of small to mid tier suppliers. Behind Octopus, which has a customer satisfaction score of 83 per cent, the top five is made up by Ebico, Bulb Energy, Pure Planet, People’s Energy and Powershop.

Three of these – People’s Energy, Powershop and Pure Planet – are new to the rankings, with Pure Planet joining Octopus and So Energy as one of Which?’s recommended suppliers for 2020.

SSE and Eon were the highest-scoring among the biggest energy firms and came in joint 24th with smaller firm.

The top ten suppliers

1Octopus Energy83 per cent
2Ebico79 per cent
3=Bulb78 per cent
3=Pure Planet78 per cent
5=People’s Energy77 per cent
5=Powershop77 per cent
7=Ecotricity75 per cent
7=So Energy75 per cent
9=Bristol Energy73 per cent
9=Co-operative Energy73 per cent
9=Engie73 per cent
9=Ovo Energy73 per cent

SSE’s 3.5m customers were recently purchased by ninth-placed Ovo, which means they could see changes in their service in the future.

Robin Hood Energy, the UK’s first council-owned supplier (and used by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn) was the biggest faller, dropping from second place last year to mid-table this year.

Recently the Nottingham-based firm delayed the publishing of its accounts amid fears over its finances.

Together Energy finished bottom of the table, despite having secured a mid-table position last year. It scored poor two-star ratings from customers for billing accuracy, clarity, customer service and value for money. 

The bottom ten suppliers

1Together Energy48 per cent
2=Spark Energy51 per cent
2=Scottish Power51 per cent
4Ampower53 per cent
5Green Star Energy55 per cent
6Npower57 per cent
7Shell Energy58 per cent
8=EDF Energy60 per cent
8=British Gas60 per cent
10=SSE61 per cent
10=Eon61 per cent
10=E61 per cent
10=iSupply Energy61 per cent

Jodi Hamilton, relationships director at the Energy Ombudsman, said:

“Challenger brands have brought innovation and competition to the energy sector, but we know from the complaints we see as the ombudsman that it would be unfair and misleading to characterise all small suppliers as good and all large suppliers as bad.

“The shape of the energy market is changing before our eyes amid a wave of mergers and acquisitions, to the extent that today’s small or medium-sized supplier could be a major player by the end of 2020.”

Companies were assessed by bill accuracy, bill clarity, customer service, complaints handling, digital tools and value for money to give an overall score.

Which? surveyed 8,000 consumers in August.