Npower was one of Britain’s biggest energy suppliers with approximately 6.5 million customers at its peak. The brand is to be wound down in 2020, with customers moved over to E.ON UK who acquired npower in 2019.
In 2018, npower was lined up to merge with SSE to save the npower brand after years of poor performance, which saw the brand lose nearly half a million customers in 2018 alone and post an operating loss of over £140m.
However, the merger fell through in December 2018.
The unsuccessful SSE/npower merger was called off after market conditions meant it would be impossible to create a sustainable business. SSE and npower blamed “government price caps, business performance and tough market conditions.”
In January 2019, npower was acquired by E.ON UK who conducted an independent review of the business. They found that operating it would be unprofitable, and in November 2019, they announced the npower brand would be wound down.
Npower is Now E.ON
Npower is being wound down as a brand and the company is being absorbed by E.ON.
npower customers will now be served by E.ON UK, until such a time when their contracts run out and they are able to switch supplier.
Npower’s place as one of the big six has been taken by Ovo Energy, who is now the sixth-largest energy supplier in the United Kingdom.
E.ON pulling the plug on npower came as no great surprise to the energy market. Npower posted a nine-month operating loss of €167m (£142.1m) in 2019, and the business became an unsustainable burden on E.ON who wanted to be rid.
Npower’s Core Services
npower supplied gas and electricity to small, medium and large businesses with fixed and variable non-domestic tariffs.
Most of npower’s business customers were served by a standard business energy tariff that used a combination of fossil fuels, nuclear fuel and renewables. However, they also offered a 100% green energy tariff with no carbon emissions.
npower was one of the key proponents for smart meters in the United Kingdom and actively encouraged businesses to adopt them. They offered free smart meters to eligible businesses with installation and setup included.
They also offered vehicle charging installation to businesses and were one of the very first energy suppliers to invest in EV charge points.
Npower’s Fuel Mixes
Npower was acquired by E.ON in January 2019. Their last fuel mix was published for the period 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019 and was as follows:
Npower Select / Npower Limited
- Coal – 7.2%
- Gas – 48.9%
- Nuclear – 14.7%
- Renewable – 26.2%
- Other – 3.1%
And the environmental impact was as follows:
- CO2 emissions – 264g per kWh
- Radioactive waste – 0.0010g per kWh
Npower Direct Limited
- Coal – 8.9%
- Gas – 60.3%
- Nuclear – 18.1%
- Renewable – 8.9%
- Other – 3.8%
And the environmental impact was as follows:
- CO2 emissions – 325g per kWh
- Radioactive waste – 0.0013g per kWh
Npower Business Renewable
- Coal – 0%
- Gas – 0%
- Nuclear – 0%
- Renewable – 100%
- Other – 0%
And their environmental impact was as follows:
- CO2 emissions – 0g per kWh
- Radioactive waste – 0.0000g per kWh
Note: Most business customers not on ‘Npower Business Renewable’ were served by ‘Npower Direct Limited’.
One of the reasons why npower lost hundreds of thousands of customers before the business became unsustainable was because of poor reviews.
Here’s a breakdown of their ratings across different review platforms:
- TrustPilot – they have a 1.2/5 star rating based on over 2,000 reviews
- Review Centre – they have a 1.1/5 star rating based on over 400 reviews
Npower has also been compared to other suppliers for complaints handling:
- Citizens Advice – Npower was ranked 13th place in a table of 16 ranking non-domestic energy suppliers for complaints handling. The only companies who fared worse were Utilita, Business Energy Solutions and Corona.
Npower was also caught up in several scandals over the years:
- In 2011, they were ordered by Ofgem to pay £2 million for mishandling customer complaints, spanning domestic and non-domestic customers
- In 2015, they were ordered by Ofgem to pay £26m for inaccurate billing. This was the biggest fine ever at the time
- In 2018, they were ordered by Ofgem to pay £2.4m after failing to supply business customers with advanced electricity meters
Npower in the News
Thousands of jobs to go as npower closes
Source: Sky News
November 2019: Up to 4,500 jobs in the energy sector will be lost following the announcement that npower is to close down. Npower’s owner, E.ON, has said the brand is in “a critical and unsustainable business situation”.
Planned UK merger of Npower and SSE collapses
December 2018: The planned merger of SSE and npower has collapsed after the industry regulator proposed a cap on consumer bills. SSE pulled the plug on the deal after a review found merging would create an unsustainable business.
Switching to Npower
Npower is no longer a functioning energy supplier — they were acquired by E.ON in 2019 and the brand has since been wound down. Existing Npower customers have been moved over to E.ON with their existing rates honoured.
If you want to switch your business energy supplier and would have been interested in Npower, E.ON is the nearest similar supplier to consider.
Switching to E.ON is easy with EnergyBillKill – all you need to do is enter your business’s postcode, current supplier, usage in kWh and ideal billing period.
By comparing energy deals with EnergyBillKill, you can get the very best prices for your electricity and gas and compare deals from multiple suppliers. Npower will be no loss to your search for a great energy deal when you have so many top suppliers to choose from.