npower Helps 10,000 SMEs Commit To Save Energy

10,000 UK SMEs have had a helping hand to reduce their overheads and become more competitive, thanks to the support of energy supplier, npower.

npower has welcomed its 10,000th customer to its Smart Start scheme, a toolkit and advice service which helps SMEs save on their energy bills quickly, through easy to implement energy efficiency measures. These include turning equipment off and managing heating and ventilation systems, which can save up to 10% off their energy bills.

Patrick Harvey, npower’s head of customer loyalty, said: “Helping 10,000 UK SMEs to save energy is a significant milestone for them and us. The Carbon Trust believes that businesses could save 10% on their energy bills through easy energy efficiency measures: if each of these 10,000 SMEs saved 10% on their annual energy bill, up to £5 million* could have been saved already. This is testament to the impact that simple measures, such as those included in the SmartStart help and advice can have. The ethos behind SmartStart is to help businesses realise the savings they can make by providing the right advice and support. It’s great to see so many SMEs are taking energy efficiency seriously, and realising the rewards that can be achieved through such measures.

“We know from the findings of npower’s latest Business Energy Index (nBEI) that 53% of small businesses do not have any methods in place to manage energy efficiency. I suspect this is because many do not have the resources themselves to research and implement energy efficiency measures, so with toolkits such as SmartStart this is taken care of and cost savings are easily achievable.”

npower’s SmartStart service includes a free energy monitor to help SMEs keep a close eye on how much energy they are consuming, so they can see where they can make savings. In addition, SMEs have access to expert advice via a dedicated helpline (0845 070 4019) enabling them to identify the simple measures which will make a big difference.

More information on how npower can help SMEs reduce emissions and cut costs can be found at

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npower Releases Latest Energy Market Update

npower has launched its latest energy market update, as part of its ongoing drive to help businesses and energy professionals to better understand the UK power market so that they can more effectively manage their price and volume risks.

Delivered from npower’s award winning Optimisation Desk by expert Magali Hodgson, npower’s fortnightly energy market update report details how even though the microeconomic outlook in the Eurozone remains uncertain leaving Brent volatile, the forecast of above average temperatures and high UK storage levels are giving a healthy outlook to the prompt market.

Magali Hodgson commented: “Forecast of above average temperature for the next couple of weeks and the UK’s gas and power system coping comfortably with the start of the winter, have removed some of the risk premium from the balance of the winter prices, giving a bearish sentiment to the prompt for the moment. It is also interesting to note that summer 2012 and Winter 2013 are now back to levels seen before the Japanese disaster indicating that there is maybe some upside to come as buyers come into the market.

“The question is when will the predicted cold temperature come, and will it be as cold as last winter’s?”

The npower energy market updates are filmed on a fortnightly basis by independent news agency, Energy Live News. They are delivered from npower’s Optimisation Desk, which is a unique service that provides businesses using flexible purchase energy contracts with access to information on the UK wholesale energy market and up to date advice on an individual basis.

More information and the updates can be found at Those who would like to suggest a market update topic of interest or to discuss its content can contact Magali Hodgson at npower by emailing

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npower Urges Public To Act Quickly For Solar Savings

The 24th – 28th October sees the return of Energy Saving Week, and this year’s focus is on the different technologies and techniques that Brits can employ to help reduce their energy bills.

With each day of the week playing host to a different theme, Tuesday 26th October will be dedicated to Microgeneration, or renewable energy technologies; a topic that npower, the UK’s leading utility provider of solar technology, knows a lot about.

With speculation rife that the Feed-in-Tariffs (FITS) associated with solar power may be reduced as of April 2012, npower is urging any homeowners thinking about going green to act quickly in order to take advantage of the best possible rates.

Environmentally friendly and cost efficient solar PV (photovoltaic) panels are available from £7,350. What’s more, customers who sign up for the system are eligible to reap the rewards of FITs, which essentially pay homeowners for the energy they produce.

Launched in the UK on 1 April 2010, FITs offer homeowners who have had solar PV panels installed, using products and installers accredited under the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS), 25 years payment for all the clean electricity they produce. This is regardless of whether they use it or export it back to the grid.

Homeowners are paid 43.3p for every unit of electricity they generate, but can also be paid 3.1p for any electricity they don’t use if they choose to sell it back to the grid. Combine this with the savings made on electricity bills, and the average annual FITs income, and savings could be around £1,100 a year for an average 2.7kWp system.*

Helen Booker, solar expert for npower, commented: “Solar PV uses energy from the sun to create electricity to run appliances and lighting in the home. This form of solar technology requires only daylight to operate, so it will still work even on a typically cloudy day in the UK.

“This increasingly popular option uses renewable energy, resulting in zero carbon emissions or other greenhouse gases. Solar PV users could find themselves dramatically reducing their carbon footprint and saving up to almost 22 tonnes of carbon dioxide over a 30 year period.

“If the government goes ahead with the reduction of the FITs rates as planned, it would mean that those taking up the scheme in April 2012 will not receive as much money for their energy as those who signed up prior to the changes, so it really is important to start thinking about installing solar technology sooner rather than later.

“To mark Energy Saving Week, we are encouraging the nation to think about the amount of energy that they use, and urge them to consider greener alternatives such as solar PV.”

npower has a dedicated team working with homeowners to plan, fund and install solar panels and then buy back the energy they generate.

Solar PV can be installed on any home with a roof, wall or free ground area that faces within 90 degrees south, providing that it is not overshadowed by trees or surrounding buildings as shade will decrease how effective the panels are and therefore the energy generated.

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Charles Hendry Joins Swindon School For npower Climate Cops Fun

Charles Hendry, Minister for Energy at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, Volker Beckers CEO RWE npower and Peter Terium RWE Group CEO joined pupils in Swindon for a Climate Cops Academy.

A group of 60 year 5 and 6 students from Tregoze Primary School years took part in npower’s environmental educational programme Climate Cops.

The Minister joined the students who were shown some simple ways to save energy in an exciting and engaging way. The interactive day included generating electricity with body movement, working with miniature examples of renewable energy sources and using thermal imaging cameras to see the effects of insulation.

Watching and participating in the activities, Charles Hendry commented: “This is a fantastic initiative, which will help young people learn more about where we get our energy from and what that means for the planet.

“I have been impressed by the enthusiasm of the children here today. I am sure that they will take what they have learned away with them and make a big difference to their school and homes.”

Volker Beckers, CEO of RWE npower said: “We are proud of our Climate Cops programme and believe it’s essential to get young people involved and inspired about energy efficiency. Energy is the lifeblood of our society, and a greater understanding of this brings with it respect for generations to come.”

Over 5,000 children have already taken part in Climate Cops Academies in 2011 and the programme has reached 43,000 students since it began in November 2007.

The Climate Cops programme visits schools across the UK in a bid to help them become greener. Working with local councils, npower provides schools with free energy audits and recommendations to help them to reduce their carbon footprint.

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npower Business Energy Customers Say Energy Red Tape Must Be Scrapped Or Simplified

npower has found that businesses are concerned that current UK energy regulations will not raise the investment needed to ensure the country’s low carbon future, and are calling on the government to either simplify or scrap some existing legislation to ensure targets can be met.

These are the findings of a consultation by npower among business energy users, which found that one in three (32%) do not believe that legislation such as the Carbon Reduction Commitment Energy Efficiency Scheme (CRC), Climate Change Levy (CCL) and Climate Change Agreements (CCAs), the Renewables Obligation and Feed In Tariffs will help ensure the £200bn investment needed for the UK’s energy infrastructure is achieved.

The results of npower’s consultation, which is still ongoing, will be fed back to government as part of its Red Tape Challenge initiative. The government consultation on the energy sector formally opens on the 25th of November.

Against a backdrop of political debate on how to best regulate the energy industry,npower asked businesses which energy legislation they would keep, which they would like to see simplified, and those they would like to see scrapped completely.

The CRC, perhaps unsurprisingly, received most attention, with over two thirds of businesses (69%) wanting to see the scheme simplified and more than half of business (57%) believing it should be scrapped. Over a third (38%) would like to see it merged with existing regulation.

There was also a call to scrap the Renewables Obligation among some businesses (41%), with nearly half (47%) calling for it to be simplified. Opinion was split on CCL and CCAs, with 29% wanting to see them scrapped, and 32% believing they should stay.

Wayne Mitchell, interim industrial and commercial markets director at npower, commented: “Energy policy ultimately drives British business. But, as the Government recognises through its Red Tape Challenge initiative, there is a mammoth amount of legislative cost burden on British businesses. Groups such as the CBI have been very vocal about how this legislation is not only stifling domestic growth, but also making the UK less competitive on an international scale.

“At the moment the energy market is neither fully regulated, nor fully liberalised and that this ‘in-between’ situation is leaving businesses and investors in a ‘limbo’ unable to make an informed decision. That is why we again urge the business community to make sure their voices are heard. This is a unique opportunity on an unprecedented scale to have a say on energy legislation – and our own consultation reveals a mixed bag of views so far.

“We are committed to ensuring the voice of business is heard, and there is still time to have your say at”

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Npower Competition Winner And Friends Train With England Stars Alastair Cook And Matt Prior

npower has announced the winner of its cricket competition that was launched this summer during the Test Series. The contest offered cricket fans the chance to train with members of the English national team.

Robin Little, from Chesterton in Cambridge, was chosen at random from thousands of entries across this summer’s npower Test Series against Sri Lanka and India. Robin visited Lord’s cricket ground in London to train with England cricket stars Alastair Cook and Matt Prior, with former England spinner John Emburey leading the session. Robin headed to the capital with his group of friends who are all local to the Chesterton area. The training session was followed by a lunch, Q&A session and a chance to get some personal photographs and autographs of the day. Adding to that, npower also threw in a free tour of Lord’s and hawk-eye analysis of the session.

The group of mates enjoyed a night’s accommodation in a central London hotel and£500 spending money for a night on the town.

Robin said: “I am absolutely delighted to win this npower competition. I’m a huge cricket fan and it will be amazing to train with England’s best at such an iconic location. To get personal training with 16 of my friends is an amazing opportunity, I never realised prizes like this existed.”

Alastair Cook said: “Robin and his friends were a great group to train with and have a clear love for the game. They were a pleasure to spend time with and hopefully they learnt a few tricks of the trade at the home of cricket.”

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Npower Wins Best In Sector For Its Call Centres In The North East And Around The UK

Npower has announced success for its North East contact centre workers when the energy company’s call centre was named one of the top 50 in the UK.

Awarded top spot in the prestigious ‘best in sector’ class for utilities and the silver medal position in the ‘large contact centre’ category, overall npower was awarded 21st spot in the league of 50.

Julie Jaglowski, customer services director at npower, said: “This is a really proud moment for everyone who works in our contact centres. It’s external recognition of what we already know: that we are dedicated and passionate about helping our customers and making sure that they experience a first class service.

“It’s testament to the hard work that everyone puts in. This year we’ve worked really hard on continuing to improve our service and keeping our focus as we strive for a five-star service. This reward shows that it’s paying off.

“Everyone in our team should feel very proud of this award. Whether it’s battling through harsh winters or re-training on our new Atlas systems – our teams have remained committed to serving our customers with outstanding commitment. Well done to everyone – it’s a great achievement”.

The award culminated in three months of mystery shopping carried out by independent researchers, measuring npower against a range of criteria including: knowledge; personalisation; professionalism and timeliness.

The calls reflected all types of enquires at various times of the day – including customer account queries and those wanting to know more about the products and services.

Collecting the award on behalf of npower, Chris Rainsforth, quality manager said: “I was really honoured to collect the award on behalf of everyone who has worked so hard over the last 12 months.

“I shall be bringing the award back very carefully this afternoon – and promise not to leave it on the train.”

Kevin McCullough, npower’s chief operating officer, added: “This is superb news – and well deserved. As part of my Undercover Boss filming just a few weeks’ ago, I experienced first-hand just how challenging working in a contact centre can be, so I am full of admiration for the great work that the teams have achieved.

“Customer Service remains a priority and this award has given us the recognition of the great customer experience we’re striving to achieve. Well done to everyone involved”.

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