Castle Water will begin taking on retail activities for business customers in stages as from autumn 2016, and will acquire the business retail operation from April 2017, when the competitive market fully opens. Thames Water’s existing Scottish business customers will also be taken over.
According to Thames chief executive Martin Baggs, the agreement will allow the company to concentrate on its core regional household business.
He added that “The government is fully opening the national retail market for business customers in order to increase competition, welcome new entrants, inject new ideas and create a more diverse range of services tailored for business needs. Today’s decision will help to deliver those aspirations and we fully believe it is in the best interests of all our customers – both households and businesses.”
Thames Water will continue to service household customers, which comprise around 95% of its customer base and will heavily invest in a new customer relationship and billing system for its household retail business.
John Reynolds, chief executive of Castle Water stated that all business customers are currently being directly notified of the upcoming change, and said: “We are excited about the opportunity to provide retail services to business customers in the Thames Water area, building on our experience as one of the fastest growing water suppliers in the UK.”
Baggs also said, “Castle Water, like Thames Water, prides itself on delivering high levels of service at a competitive price and is therefore ideally placed to satisfy the retail needs of our business customers, while we continue to take good care of the retail needs of our household customers.”