SSE has reported half-year profits up from £287.4 million last year to £397.5 million for the six months to September this year.
The UK energy supplier’s retail arm also posted operating profits of £48.7 million, despite a £133.7 million loss for the same period last year.
The news follows a spate of price rises in the energy industry that saw energy bills go up for millions of customers across the UK.
SSE, which also owns Southern Electric, SWALEC and Scottish Hydro, increased its gas and electricity prices on 15th October by an average of 9% or £119, affecting 8.4 million customers
The average household energy bill for an SSE customer today is £1,354 a year compared to £1,094 in January 2011 – £260 or 24% higher.
‘Consumers will be bitterly disappointed’
Ann Robinson, Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch said:
“Consumers will be bitterly disappointed to see profits soaring so shortly after being asked to swallow a 9% price hike. And while SSE has pledged not to increase its prices again until at least the second half of 2013, whether this will be enough to satisfy customers in the face of these headline profits remains to be seen.
Average household energy bills:
|Supplier||January 2011||January 2012||January 2013|
Based on a medium user consuming 3,300 kWh of electricity and 16,500 kWh of gas, paying on receipt of bill with bill sizes averaged across all regions. Bill sizes include all announced price hikes as at 13th November, 2012.
Consumers urged to tighten up on energy spending
The announcement follows recent research by uSwitch which found that almost nine in ten households (87%) will be rationing their energy use this winter.
Last winter three quarters of households (75%) – potentially 19.5 million – went without heating at some point to keep energy costs down.
Commenting on what action households should take, Ann Robinson said: “Rather than resorting to drastic and potentially dangerous measures, I would urge consumers to make their money go further by making their homes energy efficient and making sure that they are paying the lowest possible price for the energy they do use.
“There are many low-cost or free insulation offers available that households can take advantage of, plus there is currently over £300 a year difference between the cheapest and most expensive tariffs on the market. These two steps offer us all the best protection against the high cost of household energy today.”
SSE – Learn all about Big Six energy supplier SSE and its recent price rises.
Price changes – Get the full breakdown of the recent price rises with our comprehensive guide.