Smaller energy suppliers are facing more and more obstacles as we head into winter, with high gas prices and increased demand threatening their future. Already, six UK energy suppliers have closed their doors, but they’re unlikely to be the last ones.
Ofgem has requested payments from various energy companies, showing how some are unable to keep up with their payments for whatever reason. While this is not a sure sign that they’re going bust, it’s an indication that they might be in trouble.
Here’s the latest on Symbio Energy and its current situation.
Why are wholesale gas prices rising?
Gas prices hit a record high back in August and with demand increasing as the weather gets colder, gas costs have continued to climb. What’s more, planned maintenance on UK electricity plants means that 20% of the UK’s nuclear power plants are not in operation right now.
As a result, UK consumers are paying less than the energy suppliers for their power, causing loss of profit for many companies. While the bigger companies are better equipped to shoulder the weight, smaller businesses like Symbio Energy are finding it harder to take the strain.
Which energy suppliers have already gone bust?
The companies which have already closed their doors due to the current situation include:
- Green Supplier Limited (22 September)
- Avro Energy (22 September)
- Utility Point (14 September)
- People’s Energy (14 September)
- PFP Energy (7 September)
- MoneyPlus Energy (7 September)
- HUB Energy (9 August)
Has Symbio Energy gone bust?
Symbio Energy has been in trouble with Ofgem a few times this year already. The first was a £100,000 fine for failing to meet the late payment deadline for their Renewable Obligations, and the second was a provisional order to pay £450,000 into the feed-in-tariff scheme. This was after missing the initial deadline.
More recently, on September 21st, Symbio Energy was among a few smaller UK energy suppliers that Ofgem served with a provisional order to once again pay into into the feed-in-tariff scheme. This second order was for a total of £146,238.
While these fines and late payments are not confirmation that Symbio Energy will go bust, it’s not outright confirmation that the supplier will go under. However, it does show that there seem to be some issues with cash flow running through the company.
On top of that, like many other supplers, Symbio Energy recently stopped taking on new customers. On the company website, a statement says that this is due to technical issues.
Finally, on September 29th, Symbio Energy officially closed its doors, alongside Igloo Energy and Enstroga.
Energy supply and credit balances are all protected for customers due to Ofgem’s safety net.
What happens if my energy supplier goes bust?
The best thing to do if your energy supplier does go under is to sit tight and do nothing. If you’re currently with an energy supplier that looks like it might be in trouble, it’s worth taking a regular meter reading and take a screenshot of your online account status, if applicable.
Ofgem will switch you over to a new supplier automatically and your energy supply won’t be affected, should your energy company go into administration.