06 Sep 2022

Human interest North West Utility

New chief executive confirms energy bill reduction plan

Electricity North West’s new chief executive, Ian Smyth, has begun his tenure by confirming plans to reduce energy bills for North West customers.

Ian begins his new role in North West by setting his sights on tackling the challenges that the region’s residents and businesses face.

Smyth, who has more than 25 years’ industry experience, will deliver Electricity North West’s £1.8bn business plan. The energy regulator, Ofgem, will make a final decision on the plan in December.

“It’s an incredibly difficult time for many in the region and across the country at the moment with spiralling energy costs,” says Smyth. “Electricity North West’s part of electricity bills will reduce in real terms in April to less than £80 a year as we implement our new business plan.

“We will still invest hundreds of millions of pounds a year in the thousands of miles of underground cables and overhead electricity lines that serve the region to continue to improve the safety and resilience of the network.”

Smyth also says that he will ensure that the residents and businesses continue to have a system they can rely on during the cost of living crisis and beyond, while delivering the changes needed to support the move to net zero carbon.

“Through implementing innovative technologies like Smart Street – our £78m investment to actively manage voltage street-by-street. We will help consumers to reduce their bills without interrupting their daily lives or usage patterns.

“We’re here to enable the region grow and ensure it attracts the investment and businesses it needs. At the same time we also have partnerships with charities such as Citizens Advice and Energy Saving Trust to help support individuals and families too.”

Having previously led UK Power Network Services, which provides commercial infrastructure solutions to some of the UK’s biggest organisations including London Heathrow and Canary Wharf, Smyth also brings a wealth of global experience, working with governments, regulators and other utilities across electricity, water and gas.

Smyth replaces Peter Emery who retired last month after six years of service with Electricity North West.