Small business: Big power savings with new tool

By Gill South

Photo / Brett Phibbs
Photo / Brett Phibbs

More than 2,500 businesses have used the Electricity Authority's What's My Number business tool to make savings on their electricity bills with one business finding the difference between the cheapest and most expensive pricing option was $28,000 a year.

Harcourts Cooper & Co Real Estate Ltd, an Auckland based real estate company with 12 branches servicing the North Shore and Waiheke areas, found the company could save up to $8,000 across all their branches by switching to another electricity provider.

"Sometimes you can spend all your time chasing external suppliers to save $200 a year on overheads, but this process is straightforward and the potential for savings is huge. I would recommend it to every conscientious business owner," said Ciaran Lowney, CFO of Harcourts Cooper & Co.

More New Zealand businesses need to check if they are on the right pricing plan otherwise they could be missing out on huge savings, said Electricity Authority Chief Executive, Carl Hansen today.

In October 2012, the Electricity Authority, which is behind the "What's My Number" campaign aimed at households, extended its programme enabling SMEs to shop around for the best electricity deal. Businesses can use the free, independent online tool to enter their electricity details and ask participating retailers to respond with their best offers.

"Now SMEs are starting to find out just how easy it is to shop around for cheaper power. The average spread in pricing received back is 26 per cent indicating significant savings can be gained by comparing and switching electricity retailers," said Hansen.

The more New Zealand businesses check they are on the right plan, the more pressure they can put on retailers to provide competitive offers, he added.

Businesses can start the process online, using the tool built by the company Switchme Ltd, and receive personalised quotes from participating retailers based on their location and electricity consumption.

For more information visit www.whatsmynumber.org.nz/MyBusiness.

- NZ Herald

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