€80 cashback promised to electricity customers who make One Big Switch
National campaign has attracted more than 40,000 members
One Big Switch co-founder Oliver Tattan at the launch of the One Big Switch Energy Offer in Dublin yesterday. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins
A national energy switching campaign that has attracted more than 40,000 members has reached agreement with Bord Gáis Energy (BGE) to offer electricity subscribers who move €80 cash back at the end of the first year.
Customers who move to BGE as part of the One Big Switch will also get the same 10 per cent discount on the standard rate of electricity in the first year which the company makes available to anyone who switches to it, taking the combined total saving for people who have joined the campaign to more than €200 a year.
The 10 per cent discount and €80 cash back is only open to customers who do not already get their electricity from BGE. A smaller discounted offer is available to existing customers. They will be offered a 5 per cent discount and €40 cash back if they remain with the company.
The campaign aims to use collective bargaining to drive down the price of gas and electricity for Irish consumers using the bargaining chip of a collective buying power estimated at more than € 70 million.
“This campaign was always an experiment in people power. Today that experiment worked, and group discounted electricity is finally available in Ireland for the first time,” claimed One Big Switch co-founder Oliver Tattan.
He described the deal as “a big win for consumers who joined the campaign” and expressed the hope that it would “help drive competition across the whole energy market in Ireland”.
“The rising cost of electricity in Ireland is hurting many families, hopefully this discount will bring some relief.”
Speaking to The Irish Times , campaign co-founder Lachlan Harris accepted it had not secured an upfront discount for consumers over and above what the company was already offering switchers but he said the €80 cash-back after the first year amounted to a saving of 8 per cent off the average electricity bill.
“That is a very significant deal in isolation but not only that we have also shown that collective bargaining can drive down the cost of energy and that is a big win for consumers.
“We think that will force other providers to respond to offer better value to new and existing customers.”
Consumers can see the full details of the offer, and use the savings calculator by visiting onebigswitch.ie. Householders who are not yet registered can still do so at no cost and with no obligation.
The offer is for electricity only; gas offers are expected to be available in the near future.