Ovo Energy tells staff it will cut a quarter of its workforce

Spread the love

About sharing

Ovo Energy's chief executive Stephen Fitzpatrick

Ovo Energy, the UK gas and electricity provider, has told staff it plans to cut a quarter of its workforce.

The firm is expected to axe 1,700 employees from a total 6,200 workers.

The cuts, first reported by Sky News, are understood to be linked to its acquisition of SSE’s household division three years ago and the integration of the business into Ovo.

Earlier this week, Ovo was forced to apologise for telling customers to cuddle their pets to keep warm.

Ovo Energy’s chief executive Stephen Fitzpatrick blamed a “bad day” for “ridiculous” advice to customers on how to stay warm amid soaring energy bills.

It is understood that the cuts will be made through voluntary redundancy. Ovo Energy has also told staff that it will increase minimum pay across the company to £12 an hour.

Unite, the union, said it had warned in 2020 about Ovo’s takeover of SSE’s retail business and the possible impact on jobs.

On Thursday, Unite’s general secretary Sharon Graham said: “We will do everything in our power to defend our members’ jobs.

“We will not sit by and watch our members being made to pay the price of the pandemic.”

The cuts are understood to relate to the SSE deal.

However, the energy sector has been struggling with higher wholesale gas prices since last September and the UK’s price cap for households means firms have been unable to pass on the rising costs to retail customers.

It has led to more than 20 smaller energy businesses going bust.

Regardless of the cap, households are set to see a significant rise in energy costs this year when the regulator Ofgem reviews the ceiling on gas and electricity bills.

This post was originally published on this site