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< Back to news 10 November, 2016

Water deregulation 2017 - what will it mean for your business?

In April 2017 the commercial water market will become deregulated, providing significant opportunity for businesses in England to generate savings. Beacon is here to help you manage these changes. Read on to view advice from Beacon and supply partner Pulse Business Water on how to prepare your business for the changes and how to capitalise on this significant change to the water market.

Currently, clean water and sewage services that most UK businesses use are supplied by one of 21 regional water wholesalers, meaning that suppliers are not chosen by the customers, but allocated by default depending on location. Water deregulation will allow businesses to switch water suppliers, leading to cheaper rates and better customer service as suppliers become more competitive – something that has already been seen in Scotland, where the market became deregulated in 2008.

Working with its expert water and utility supplier Pulse Business Water, Beacon’s Category Manager for Utilities and Services, Teri Humphries, has offered her advice for businesses to prepare for the changes:

“The most important thing to do, is to prepare effectively ahead of April 2017. Knowing where the opportunities and challenges are in good time will allow businesses to deal with them in the most efficient way possible. Our general advice would be to:

  1. Collate previous usage data
    Reviewing historic water usage data will enable you to see what an optimum supply contract would look like. This will put your business in a good position to identify cost savings.  
  2. Check current efficiency measures
    If there are any simple procedures that can be implemented, such as staff training or dealing with any maintenance issues, then now is the time.
  3. Review historic billing information
    If there are any errors on historic bills from your current supplier, ensure these are resolved so you are in the best possible position to switch suppliers when the time comes.

Teri added:
“We know that the full effects of deregulation aren’t likely to come into action until 12-18 months after the market officially becomes deregulated. As soon as one supplier drops its prices though, businesses should be prepared for the rest of the market to follow suit in order to truly capitalise on the market. This is why we are encouraging businesses to take steps to prepare now.”

To find out more about Beacon's supply partners, click here. To join the thousands of businesses already working with Beacon, click here.