Belfast Telegraph

Backing for Property Awards nominees from Electric Ireland

Commitment: Dermot McArdle
Commitment: Dermot McArdle

By Stephanie Bell

Electric Ireland has again partnered with the Belfast Telegraph Property Awards to recognise the worthy recipients and nominees for their contribution to Northern Ireland's property sector.

As part of the ESB Group which has been generating, trading and supplying electricity for 90 years, Electric Ireland has an unrivalled reputation in the energy sector across the island of Ireland.

That long-standing trust, expertise and market understanding has enabled the brand to build a business customer base in Northern Ireland that sees it playing an integral role in helping to drive economic growth and lead the way in innovative technologies such as renewable energy and data analytics.

Dermot McArdle, head of business markets at Electric Ireland has been in the electricity industry long enough to see the market develop from one based on consumers to one now based around customers, one he sees as an important difference.

"The industry generated and distributed the power and the 'consumers' used it. It was, for a long time, as simple as that," Dermot said.

"Now though, customers expect much more from their energy supplier than the provision of electricity and at Electric Ireland we understand that."

That commitment to local businesses and SMEs is reflected in Electric Ireland's new SME Premium Insights Tool which provides a detailed breakdown of businesses' energy consumption so that owners can manage usage, reduce costs and their carbon footprint.

It's a first to market digital platform that allows Electric Ireland customers to understand how they use electricity in their business, whether they use more or less than competitors in their industry sector as well as providing personalised tips on reducing energy consumption.

"We're all aware of general advice on how companies can cut down on electricity usage, but these recommendations are a lot more specific than that. They come right down to the individual characteristics of each business," Dermot explained.

"Putting customers in control of their consumption and usage is a major change in an industry that has seen many over recent years and this is something that Electric Ireland has been right at the forefront of."

He adds: "A key comment we heard from SMEs is that they want to be in control of their energy consumption, so we looked at how the latest data technology could help us to enhance our products and services and developed this new tool."

Unique in the Northern Ireland marketplace, it is accessible 24/7 to customers free of charge through Electric Ireland's existing Business Online platform.

Electric Ireland first entered the Northern Ireland market 21 years ago and has shown sustained growth through those years, starting with larger business customers, moving on to SMEs and then the residential market.

It is the commitment to innovations like the SME Premium insights tool coupled with a customer-centric approach which has supported Electric Ireland's strong footprint in the sector and enabled it to retain significant business customers including Strathroy, Foyle Foods, Greiner Packaging, Huhtamaki and Moy Park, with the business recently announcing a new contract as the official energy provider for the Belfast City Airport.

Electric Ireland is also committed to supporting Northern Ireland's business leaders through partnerships with the NI Chamber of Commerce and the Management Leadership Network providing insights on how they can grow their companies both large and small, now and in the future.

Entries have now closed.

To purchase tickets to the awards ceremony, click here.