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Shopping around for Electricity? Set up a new business!

Speaking about shopping around, much of the scoffing mentioned in my earlier post directed towards Mary Harney revolved around the standard response of “okay, lets shop around for our electricity and see how that goes” at a time when there was no alternative to the ESB.

Way back in February 2005, this was to all change with the deregulation of the electricity market in Ireland to much fanfare. Undeserved as this original Value Ireland research which showed that at the time, while the few electricity suppliers all intended to supply to householders, none of them actually did.

In 2006, when we went to update this research, none of the companies had yet started to supply householders, and none would answer our questions as to when they did intend to start.

In the last couple of weeks I’ve been listening to recent advertising from Energia and Airtricity directed towards business customers and advertising either cheaper electricity or guaranteeing price freezes for 3 years. But only for business customers.

I was inspired to do a little research. At the beginning of my Value Ireland work, I registered a business name and would technically be considered a sole trader, with my registered business address being my home address. So, could I buy electricity under the name of Value Ireland to my business address, which would essentially be the same as me buying electricity personally to my home address, but getting the cheaper electricity and the price freezes?

My reseach has been inconclusive so far. But wouldn’t it be interesting if everyone was to spend the €100 to register a “mickey mouse” business name at their home address to get cheaper electricity? When would the savings achieved cover the cost of the business name?

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