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18 September 2014

Wasted Energy on the High Street

New research from utility provider E.ON reveals that more than 12% of small businesses use electrical appliances, such as shop-front gadgets and attractive lighting, as a tactic to lure customers from competitors. 

E.ON's business energy director Anthony Ainsworth said: "This research paints a picture of British businesses sitting side-by-side on the high street, competing not just amongst rival firms in the same sectors but also against neighbours in order to attract customers." 

Wasting energy 

However, through the overuse of machinery or equipment, inefficient or outdated appliances and fixtures, and excessive use of lighting, air conditioning and heating, businesses could be wasting far more energy than they realise, ultimately hindering their attempts to generate revenue. 

More than half (57%) of catering and hospitality businesses are likely to leave equipment on when not in use, while 52% of retailers leave window displays on through the night. 

Ainsworth added: "Using attractive lighting can be a useful way to exhibit goods or attract customers but it may not be cost-effective if you rely on outdated or inefficient fixtures to light your store through the night." 

Cost of technology 

The vast majority (88%) of small business owners said they are motivated to manage and control workplace energy use better. However, two thirds said factors such as the cost of new technology prevent them from doing so. 

E.ON's research was carried out in March 2014, with more than 1,000 business leaders from across the UK questioned about their energy usage. 


Edie Newsroom


Co-op enlists help of boy band JLS

It seems an unlikely way to save energy but the supermarket Co-op has revealed its secret to efficiency is JLS. However, the four singers of the X-Factor-founded boy band haven’t been drafted in to go round switching off the lights at stores. Instead, a pair of free tickets and VIP treatment at one of the band’s shows was offered to the worker who saved their store plenty of energy.

Sharing the top tip at The Energy Event in Birmingham this week, Rob Scoudling, Regional Energy and Environmental Manager at Co-op said was a great “incentive” to change behaviour. The energy man revealed: “There was a one in 2,000 chance of winning the JLS prize.” Despite this it was a good enough incentive to prompt staff into better energy behaviour.

It was such a successful move, Scoudling said, Co-op is now ploughing back the cash it saved from energy efficiency to run ‘Red Letter Days’-style rewards for efficient employees.


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