A pilot program staged by debt collection services firm Qualco, hired by the main power utility PPC for support in its effort to reduce its unpaid receivables, has produced favorable results with many participating customers either agreeing to monthly installment payback terms for electricity bill arrears or settling outstanding amounts.
Thousands of PPC customers were contacted by Qualco via telephone calls, the debt collection services firm’s objective being to test a plan it intends to implement on a wider scale.
Prior to launching this test run, Qualco categorized PPC customers based on criteria such as occupation, past behavior, location and electricity consumption patterns.
The debt collection services firm adopted a mild approach when contacting PPC customers and did not resort to legal threats of any form, according to sources.
Qualco’s pilot program was staged over a two-month period and involved approximately 120,000 PPC customers with arrears.
PPC’s need to reduce its unpaid receivables figure, currently at an alarming level of at least 2.3 billion euros, was added as a term to the latest bailout update. The country’s lenders view punctualty in electricity bill payments as essential for a balanced electricity market.
A target collection figure set by Qualco for this year, believed to be 50 million euros, will most likely be tripled, according to a projection made by the debt collection firm.
The country’s four main banks are also involved in this PPC unpaid receivables collection effort. It is believed they will seek to secure amounts collected for the servicing of a 1.3 billion-euro joint loan extended to the power utility.
PPC has just announced it is toughening the terms of its existing payback program, based on deposit payments followed by monthly installments.