Who is Robin Hood Energy?
Several newcomers to the energy market are claiming to be revolutionising the industry. But the true ground breakers can be found at Nottingham City Council, of all places. The home of not-for-profit brand, Robin Hood Energy, the council established the company to tackle fuel poverty and give consumers an alternative to the ‘big six’. If you’re not keen on your hard earned wages lining the pockets of top earning CEOs, then Robin Hood Energy is for you. While its tariffs aren’t the lowest available, it is consistently beating the ‘big six’ and luring customers away.
Chipping away at the ‘big six’ marketshare and making a name for itself as the Robin Hood of the energy market, the council has sparked a trend. Seeing the success in Nottingham, other local authorities are launching their own energy brands. With Islington, Doncaster and Portsmouth among the many ready to put their not-for-profit hats in the ring.
The brand’s mission?
“We aim to make energy more affordable for all. We don’t have private shareholders or director bonuses – we’d rather pass on the benefits to you.”
What does Robin Hood Energy charge?
Robin Hood’s prices are undoubtedly cheaper than the ‘big six’, but it isn’t challenging some of the cheapest suppliers in the marketplace. Unless, of course, you live in Nottingham – where the cheapest tariff is available. However, its not-for-profit approach of taking from the rich (utility shareholders and CEOs) and giving to the poor (energy customers) may hold a bigger appeal than saving a few pounds here and there.
Robin Hood Energy claims to be able save customers around £237 over 12 months. However, as with all suppliers, it pays to run the numbers and check if your household can save more money elsewhere.
How is the Robin Hood Energy customer service?
Robin Hood’s customer service seems to be holding up, despite a growing customer base. As the not-for-profit supplier only hit the market in 2015, Which? magazine hasn’t put the brand under their exacting microscope yet. However, the customer service stats available show that Robin Hood is outperforming similar small energy supplying rivals.
In the last quarter of 2016, Robin Hood Energy received 386 complaints per 100,000. For comparison Green Star Energy received 1190 and Spark Energy received 850.
On TrustPilot, the brand has an average score of 4/5, with customer quotes including:
‘Switching was quite straight forward and easy. The first advisor wasn’t very clear about a few questions I had particularly about my tariff. However, this was clarified and explained with options given when I spoke to the second advisor at Robin Hood energy.’
‘I like this business model that reinvests profits into the service rather than the big 6 energy company shareholders. My experience so far has been excellent!’
‘Was keen to support a not-for-profit energy company but unfortunately they’re not really up to scratch – seem to be unable to cope with their growth.’
What tariffs does Robin Hood Energy offer?
Robin Hood keeps things fairly simple, with just a handful of tariffs to choose from. We’ve listed the main ones below, but it’s also worth noting you can also choose a prepayment, PAYG or an Economy 7 plan. The very cheapest tariff can only be accessed if you live in the Nottingham area, but the national tariffs are still competitive.
Evergreen: Variable tariff. No price guarantees. No exit fees.
Prime V8: 12 month fixed tariff. Fixed direct debit. No exit fees.
Winter: 12 month fixed tariff. Fixed direct debit. £30 exit fee.
How green is Robin Hood Energy?
Robin Hood Energy gets its fuel from these sources:
Robin Hood’s official fuel disclosure stats don’t tell the whole story when it comes to green credentials. As well as sourcing energy from traditional supply routes, Robin Hood has another, albeit small, green energy supply. Presumably hidden in the ‘other’ part of the stats table, Robin Hood’s energy also comes from waste food plants, solar farms and a Nottingham incinerator. Although the brand’s energy may not be ‘as green as we would like’ – this not-for-profit, trend-bucking energy brand is ahead of the national average in terms of renewables.
Robin Hood Energy in summary?
If you live in Nottingham, Robin Hood Energy is the supplier for you. Low, low prices, locally sourced energy and one in the eye for the CEOs earning big bucks off the back of your energy consumption. But before you up sticks and move to Nottingham – you’ve got some other options. Robin Hood is still competitive compared to the ‘big six’ – and their customer service is, so far, holding up to the influx of customers.
Or your local authority may well be launching its own energy start-up in the coming months. For now, Robin Hood Energy looks a safe bet for lower bills, better customer service and peace of mind – if you’re comparing directly with the big energy brands.