Go Effortless Energy Goes Under
Go Effortless Energy looks set to become the first energy provider to close since the coronavirus pandemic began, according to industry insiders.
The family-run supplier has informed energy regulator Ofgem of its interest in entering into the Supplier of Last Resort (SoLR) scheme, designed to stop households going without energy if their provider goes bust. Under the terms of the scheme, Go Effortless Energy will have its licence revoked and a bidding process will be opened to reassign its customers to another supplier.
The supplier has refused to comment until Ofgem makes an official announcement, though Go Effortless Energy co-founder Andrew Burns did say: "We would like to put our side of the story forward when the time is right."
The first of many?
Although Go Effortless is the first energy provider to fall victim to the coronavirus crisis, a number of suppliers have been seeing customers cancelling direct debit payments, with concerns that many will be unable to cover energy costs if made redundant once the government’s furlough scheme ends on 31 October, saddling struggling energy suppliers with huge debts.
A recent study by Which? saw furloughed workers increasingly missing monthly payments, with 7% defaulting on their energy bills. Business energy suppliers also look set to be hit particularly hard, due to an unprecedented reduction in industrial gas and electricity usage, with much of the country working from home during the lockdown.
Although struggling energy suppliers were given a £350m lifeline by Ofgem in July, there are increasing concerns that Go Effortless will be just the first of many to go under during these testing times.
Go Effortless Energy’s closure now means that nineteen energy suppliers have ceased operations since the start of 2019. Prior to Go Effortless, GnERGY was the most recent, with its 9,000 customers moved over to Bulb in March of this year.
Who are Go Effortless Energy?
Stoke-on-Trent-based Go Effortless Energy was set up in 2013 by husband and wife team Andrew and Melanie Burns. The supplier marketed itself as being run ‘by customers, for customers’, as its founders came from outside the energy industry.
Go Effortless aimed to keep things simple by offering just the one fixed tariff with easy-to-understand billing and no exit fees. It looked to keep prices low by cutting down on costly overheads, running from a small office based on the site of the former Chatterley Whitfield colliery and employing an average of just three staff members, including the Burns.
I’m a Go Effortless customer - what are my options now?
If you’re a Go Effortless Energy customer concerned about what happens to your account next, we recommend getting in touch with the supplier directly by calling its customer service team on 03333 444109. Lines are open Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm.