A new report has identified the deep concern businesses have about rising energy prices.
In the survey of 500 businesses, conducted by Business Juice and targeting companies ranging from 1 to 500 employees in size, respondents stated that if the trend for 25% year-on-year price rises continued, it would have a serious impact on their business.
For one in twelve of those asked this would have catastrophic consequences, forcing them out of business, and a further 31% said that the impact of rising energy prices would be so serious it would transform the way they do business. Given that business energy prices have risen by 58% since 2010, it is clear that the threat posed by energy price rises to UK businesses is of significant importance.
The Barometer revealed that the concern around business energy is underpinned by the amount of uncertainty and ignorance about energy amongst UK businesses, with only half of respondents feeling confident on how to do something about their energy bills. While 56% stated that they plan to switch energy supplier in the next 12 months, with 90% doing so to lower their overall bill, the survey showed considerable scope for energy-saving action. For example, only one in five have so far installed a smart meter and only 14% have installed an energy management system.
Other significant findings included:
- 64% agreed that the business energy market is competitive and they regularly shop around;
- A rise in price of just 10% would prompt 65% of businesses to take action;
- 64% of businesses stated that they would install smart meters in response to rising energy prices;
- 97% of businesses said they have already or would consider strengthening energy-saving policies in reaction to rising energy prices.
James Constant, managing director of Business Juice, commented:
‘This inaugural survey clearly shows the deep concern being felt by businesses across the UK about rising energy prices.
‘With so many stating that rising energy prices will have a serious if not catastrophic impact on their business, it is imperative that all businesses pay close attention to their energy bills and consider what efforts they can take to manage their energy risks.’
Business Juice has launched Energy Forecaster, a new online community designed to engage businesses of all sizes on energy issues, to help address these concerns. The goal of Energy Forecaster is to reach and engage with as many businesses as possible to raise awareness and changing attitudes around business energy.