Sale of 30,000 former Economy Energy customers to another supplier blocked by regulator
The energy regulator has stepped in to stop tens of thousands of former customers of the failed supplier Economy Energy from being moved to the provider E (Gas and Electricity), it announced today.
Ofgem discovered that Economy Energy 'sold' 30,000 customers to E in December, but didn't tell the regulator about this deal when it went under last week.
Economy Energy collapsed just one week after it was banned from taking on new customers following a spate of complaints throughout the year.
Ovo Energy was appointed by Ofgem to take on Economy Energy's estimated 235,000 customers. This process makes sure that nobody is left without a supplier if their energy firm stops trading. This is called the 'supplier of last resort' process.
But the deal struck between Economy Energy and E in December means that some customers were in the process of being moved over to E. The regulator believes that the contract between E and Economy Energy "may no longer be effective" as a result of the appointment of Ovo.
Ofgem has now ordered E to 'return' any former Economy Energy customers that were in the process of being moved over so that Ovo becomes their new supplier.
Customers on prepayment meters will be moved to Boost, Ovo Energy's prepayment brand.
If you're unhappy with your energy company's prices or service, do a comparison using our Cheap Energy Club to switch and save.
I was an Economy Energy customer and I've been told that I'm being moved over to E – what should I do?
Ofgem says you don't need to do anything. Simply ignore any letters or communications you've received from E, and you will be moved over to Ovo Energy.
A spokesperson for the regulator said that none of the households that were in the process of being moved to E had completed the process.
Ofgem advises Economy Energy's former customers not to try to switch to another energy supplier until their account has been fully set up with Ovo Energy.
You should also take a meter reading ready for when Ovo Energy or Boost contacts you over the coming weeks. Once you've been moved over to Ovo, you can choose to switch again if you wish.
An Ofgem spokesperson said: "We have issued a provisional order to prevent further harm to former customers of Economy Energy and for the supplier to stop the transfer of former Economy Energy customers to E."
We contacted E for comment, but are yet to hear back.
Last May, Ofgem began investigating both Economy Energy and E after they were accused of breaking competition rules by sharing information about each other's customers and agreeing not to try to get customers of one supplier to switch to the other.
Ofgem is yet to release the conclusions of its investigation.
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