The number of consumers and small businesses switching electricity suppliers in search of more affordable energy deals reached 3.1 percent in March, nearly double the 1.62 percent who did so during the equivalent month a year earlier.
Power utility PPC captured 30.6 percent of these shifting consumers, a record figure for the company.
Consumers are returning to PPC at a growing rate, an influx offsetting the number of the company’s exiting customers. PPC’s net loss of customers was virtually wiped out in March, limited to 1,400 low-voltage connections from approximately five million in total represented by the company.
PPC lost between 20,000 and 25,000 customers per month from September to December last year, while, earlier in 2021, the company was losing between 40,000 and 45,000 low-voltage customers each month.
Customer shifts during the first quarter of 2022 have not altered the rankings of independent suppliers, based on market share.
The top five remained unchanged with the country’s three vertically integrated suppliers, Protergia, Elpedison and Heron, occupying the first three places, respectively, followed by Zenith and Watt+Volt.
Among the independent players, Zenith registered the biggest number of new customer additions, closely followed by NRG.
PPC’s pricing policy during the energy crisis has created a sense of greater safety, attracting customers. The impact of the company’s new charges on fixed tariffs remains to be seen.
Sector officials believe the retail electricity market is essentially no longer open to competition, warning of a return to a market lacking competition.