Energy & Recycling

Published: September 18, 2020 | Updated: September 18, 2020

‘I have big ambitions for my business’ – Energy entrepreneur is on a mission to cut your bills

By Andrew Diprose, editor

Luke Chapman is a man on a mission.

His quest is to stop people overpaying on their energy bills.

The young entrepreneur is the Founder and Director of Switchboo.

It’s a completely free service that sorts energy bills out year after year so customers never overpay and don’t have to worry.

Already more than 5,000 people have used Switchboo, each saving £300 a year on average.

They’ve included Luke’s Gran who saved more than £700 a year by moving away from her expensive tariff.

But the 21-year-old, who operates with his team out of an office in Bournemouth, says he’s barely scratched the surface.

He said: “We all know that we should check our energy bills each year but most of us can never find the time to do it.

“The result is that the majority of people stay with their supplier and end up paying way more than they need to.

“We’re not just a comparison site.

“We’ll tell you if you’re overpaying and show you the cheapest deals on the market.

“If you decide to switch, we’ll sort everything out with your old and new supplier and you don’t have to lift a finger.

“And when that deal ends, we’ll automatically switch you to the cheapest deal we can find if you can save £50 or more.

“It means our customers will always be on a cheap deal, never overpay and never have to worry about it.”

The latest State of the Energy Market 2019 report from regulator Ofgem suggests Switchboo could be tapping into a huge potential market.

Published last October it revealed:

  • • 20% – The proportion of consumers switching supplier between July 2018 and June 2019.
  • £260 – The approximate amount consumers on a Standard Variable Tariff could save by switching to the cheapest tariff basket in the market between June 2018 and June 2019.
  • 49% – The proportion of consumers who reported they have never switched, or have only switched once.

Luke, who started Switchboo from his parent’s conservatory, said: “We keep the service completely free by taking a commission from the companies that we switch people to.

“It is a set commission for every single supplier so we don’t favour one over the other.

“We will always display the cheapest deal that we can find and only work with suppliers that provide quality customer service.”

Keen to leave school and get stuck into the world of work at the earliest opportunity, Luke hit on the idea of Switchboo while selling packages for a large energy supplier.

He said: “It was the spark for my business as I saw just how many people didn’t actually switch suppliers.

“I did my family’s bills and realised how much they could save and it was instinct to help others.

“Older people, in particular, can be very wary about moving to new suppliers but our way is quick, easy and hassle free.

“For now it’s only for domestic customers – not businesses.

“We’re getting great reviews on Trustpilot from customers who really appreciate the service we offer.

“I have big ambitions for the business.

“I absolutely love what I do and feel very proud at what has been achieved so far.

“But we’ve only just begun.”