The UK’s Big Six energy firm’s market share of domestic customers is dwindling and fell to a record low in 2017, as smaller rivals lured customers away with cheaper deals. The six largest electricity suppliers’ market share dropped to 78% at the end of 2017 from 85% a year earlier.
The UK’s energy firms are under pressure to reduce bills. Prime Minister Theresa May in February 2018 introduced new legislation to force the regulator, Ofgem, to cap what she called “rip-off” prices until 2020, after which Ofgem would decide whether it should be extended on an annual basis until its expiry in 2023.
Six energy suppliers have monopolised the UK energy market since the gas and electricity networks were privatised, but over 60 smaller rivals have recently emerged as effective competition. The UK electricity network was privatised in 1990, allowing households to choose suppliers.