United Kingdom

Shell Energy takes on 255,000 customers from collapsed energy firm Green after it collapsed

Shell Energy is to take on 255,000 former customers from Green, one of the latest in a raft of small energy supplier to fail over the past month.

Energy watchdog Ofgem has had to find providers for more than two million energy customers over the past month after soaring natural gas prices drove the collapse of seven small suppliers.

Green, which was registered as Green Supplier Limited, collapsed just days after the firm's chief executive, Peter McGirr, warned that the outlook was 'looking bleak'.

Shell Energy is to take on 255,000 former customers from Green, one of the latest in a raft of small energy supplier to fail over the past month

Green, which was registered as Green Supplier Limited, collapsed just days after the firm's chief executive, Peter McGirr, warned that the outlook was 'looking bleak'

Ofgem said on Monday that former and current customers of Green will have any outstanding credit on their balance honoured under the agreement, with no interruption supply predicted during the handover.

The regulator added that Green customers will be contacted over the coming days about the change and are being advised to wait until the transfer is completed before deciding if they wish to change suppliers.

Neil Lawrence, Ofgem's director of retail, said: 'I am pleased to announce we have appointed Shell Energy for the customers of Green Supplier Limited.

'We understand that this news may be unsettling for customers, however, they do not need to worry.

'Their energy supply will continue as normal, and customer credit balances will be honoured.

'Shell Energy will be in contact with customers over the coming days with further information.

'Once the transfer has been completed, customers can switch if they wish to.'

Up to one-in-four UK homes use companies whose wholesale supplies are not 'hedged' against market fluctuations, leaving them heavily exposed, industry sources told Sky News.

Wholesale prices for gas have increased 250% since the start of the year, and 70% since August, meaning these unprotected firms are buying energy for less than they sell it to customers. 

It is expected that the price cap could rise to £1,500 for the average household in an attempt to put energy companies' finances on a more sustainable footing. 

It came as companies last week added £600 to an annual gas and electricity bill amid claims of 'price gouging' to cash in on the crisis as rivals go to the wall.

Ministers have admitted that some families will face a choice between 'eating and heating' this winter and dismissed pleas from Britain's floundering energy providers to scrap the energy cap that protects millions of the poorest households.

Last week it was revealed that suppliers are now offering customers fixed rate dual fuel deals of around £1,900-a-year. That is already £624 more than the proposed price cap of £1,277 from October 1 for those on standard variable contracts.

The eye-watering deals, more than double the £850 average bill in 2020, are on the market to lure in those who want to fix their gas and electricity prices for 12 months in case they continue to rise.

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