Big Data, Centrica, EDF, Marine, Renewables, Solar

Centrica boss says era of ‘Big Six’ over

The chief executive of British Gas owner, Centrica, Iain Conn, says that the era of domination by the big six energy companies in the UK has come to an end.

Energy Voice reports Iain Conn called time on the era, saying that a new wave of energy technology was already making the notion of Big Six past tense.

“We are on the edge of a revolution,” he said. “The Big Six nomenclature will become passe.”
Iain Conn
Centrica, SSE, Npower, Scottish Power, Eon and EDF Energy have dominated the market share in the UK since privatisation 30 years ago – controlling 99 per cent of the residential energy market in 2012. However, that number has since fallen to 85 per cent.

The development of in-home batteries, cheap solar power and big data all feed into the energy revolution the Big Six are battling, according to Conn. More than 600,000 UK homes are now fitted with solar panels.

In response to the demands Centrica issued a £700million rights issue. Half of the proceeds were used to snap up two companies Conn said would allow Centrica to deploy a business strategy focused on small generators connected to homes.

“These acquisitions accelerate our response to these trend,” the company leader said. “In this environment it is not easy to find additional cashflows inside the company, so I approached our shareholders.”

He added: “We face new challengers in terms of technology, energy supply and generation, energy management and, of course, access to customers. We are going head-to-head with like of Google, Amazon and Samsung.”