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Updates from Team Bulb

Annual update for members 2020

We're on a mission to help 100 million people around the world lower their bills and their carbon emissions by 2030. Here’s an update on what we achieved during our last financial year, which covers April 2019 - March 2020.

We're growing in the UK and beyond

We’re growing fast - in fact, we’re officially the fastest-growing company in Europe. People are voting with their feet for green energy, fair prices, and excellent customer service. We’re helping make green mainstream: we now provide energy to 6% of the UK market, and are classed by our regulator as a large supplier.

2020 was the year we took our mission international. We launched in three new markets: France, Spain and Texas. We’re growing faster in all three markets than we were at the same point when we launched in the UK, and we’re really excited to bring new products and services to them.

As a B Corp, people and planet are at the heart of everything we do. Since Bulb started, our members have reduced their carbon footprint by 11 million tonnes of CO2.

A chart showing that since Bulb started, our members have reduced their carbon footprint by 11 million tonnes of CO2.
Notes and sources: Carbon impact is calculated based on average energy used by Bulb homes and businesses in the UK, France, Spain and USA. We multiply these by the greenhouse gas conversion factors for each country. Adding those together gives us the total CO2 avoided in all of Bulb’s markets. Data correct as of November 2020.

Great products and outstanding service

Last year we launched our Smart Pay as You Go (PAYG) tariff for pay as you go members with a smart meter. It’s the only smart PAYG offering supplied by a large energy company in the UK with 100% renewable electricity and 100% carbon neutral gas. These members can now manage their energy anywhere and at any time through the Bulb App. Being able to top up from home is so important in a pandemic and has made a big difference to our members’ lives.

A picture of the Bulb Smart Pay As You Go app
Members can top up with their phone on Bulb Smart Pay As You Go.

Our Carbon Calculator helps our members work out their carbon footprint and take steps to reduce and offset it through carbon reduction programmes around the world.

We’ve also worked hard to deliver excellent customer service throughout the pandemic (more on that later).

Making homes more energy efficient

We help low income and vulnerable households with energy efficiency measures - like loft insulation, cavity wall insulation, and boiler replacement or repair, through the ECO scheme. These are all designed to help people save money on their energy bills, keep homes warm and reduce carbon emissions.

We started installing ECO measures in February 2020, and in two months we’d helped 822 families. Since then we’ve been making great progress. We’ve helped reduce household bills by £105 million over the next 25 years, saving 335,000 tonnes of CO2.

Installing smart meters

Smart meters help our members lower their emissions and cut their bills. We made great progress during our last financial year by installing 243,643 next-generation smart meters.

We’re big fans of smart meters because they help people to understand their energy use more easily, which in turn helps to save money and cut carbon emissions.

Paying our members to generate renewable electricity in their homes

We pay our members for renewable electricity they generate at home through something called the Smart Export Guarantee. These members generate renewable power from solar panels at home. But we’re excited to expand that to members exporting electricity generated in other ways, like hydro and wind, soon. We’re also planning to start taking remote export meter readings, which will make it even easier for our members to be paid for the energy they export.

A picture of homes with solar panels.
We pay our members for energy they generate at home and export to the grid using solar panels.

Between April 2019 and March 2020, almost 3,000 members generated 6,049 MWh of renewable electricity, saving 1,549 tonnes of CO2. It would take 774,177 trees to absorb that.

Making sure we're here for you, no matter what

This year has brought challenges and changes for all of us, and like many businesses, we’ve had to adapt quickly.

Because of coronavirus our entire Bulb team moved to remote working in March 2020. We introduced a dedicated phone-line for vulnerable members so we could prioritise them during the crisis, and kept all our chat, social, email and phone lines open as usual.

An illustration of a Bulb team member serving members from home
We're providing the same Bulby service from home.

At the beginning of the pandemic, we made it easier for our members with prepayment meters to top up while they were isolating or shielding. We worked with the UK Department of Health to create guides so that NHS volunteers could top up ours and other suppliers’ prepayment customers and make sure no one went without gas or electricity.

We know that a lot of members are facing really difficult financial choices as a result of coronavirus. We’ve made it easier for members to tell us if they’re struggling with their bills, so that we can provide direct support or signpost to external services like financial and budgeting advice - if they want it.

Building a great place to work

Team Bulb has now grown to more than 1000 people, and we’re really proud that we’ve continued to create highly-skilled green jobs throughout the pandemic. During our last financial year we doubled our team, and since then we’ve doubled it again.

While we’ve been working from spare rooms, bedrooms and kitchens, we’ve made sure that our team can access any support they might need. This included access to Unmind, a platform that helps people to track their mental health; plus access to talking therapies. We’ve been running online yoga sessions during the pandemic, as well as wellbeing workshops on topics like managing anxiety and learning to switch off.

Doing more to tackle the climate crisis with the Bulb Foundation

Every time a member switches to Bulb, £2 is donated to Bulb Foundation to do more to fight the climate crisis. The foundation is focused on supporting groups who are creating real change in markets, policy, politics, or investments. We look at organisations and ideas that are new and innovative, and that challenge the status quo.

During our last financial year, the Bulb Foundation awarded more than £400,000 worth of grants to organisations doing incredible work to tackle the climate crisis and its effects.

A picture of trees in the Gola Rainforest.
The Gola rainforest in Sierra Leone, supported by our carbon offsetting programme.

This is just the start of our work at Bulb Foundation. In the next few months we’ll be looking at increasing the grants we give. We hope to prove that through collaboration and determination, we can really make a difference.

Looking to the future

2020 showed us that even with the best plans, anything can happen. We’re excited for the future and we’re working hard to provide 100% carbon neutral energy at a fair price for people around the world. We’ll be building new products to help members switch to smart, low-carbon energy solutions that will help cut carbon emissions and meet net zero 2050 targets. We’ll find new ways to provide a brilliant experience for our members around the world. Plus, we’ll hire more amazing people to help us on our journey.

Thank you to all our members for being with us.