The energy company which specialises in supplying renewable power to businesses and is headquartered in Northampton, contributed £233 million towards GDP in the East Midlands regional economy in 2017 and supported 2,700 jobs – a huge increase from £147 million and 1,900 jobs in 2016.
The analysis from Oxford Economics found that the company which also has offices in Oxford and Cardiff contributed £365m towards UK GDP in 2017 and supported 4,200 jobs across the country.
The findings were revealed in a new report looking at the economic impact of British energy company Drax Group, which Opus Energy joined in 2017.
In the space of a decade Opus Energy has grown from a challenger brand to the sixth largest supplier of gas and electricity to British businesses. It provides energy to over 300,000 customer meters, including national brands such as Lloyd’s Pharmacy and White Stuff.
The company employs around 700 employees at its new headquarters in Northampton, Opus Energy House in The Lakes Business Park, which it moved to in early 2018.
Researchers used three measures to calculate Opus Energy’s GDP contribution: the economic activity associated with the day-to-day running of the business, the activity created by the purchase of goods and services from its suppliers; and the wages the company’s employees and suppliers’ employees spend in their local area.
Opus Energy’s activities support employment in a wide range of sectors including renewable energy generation, IT, professional business services and transport.
Opus Energy COO, Nikki Flanders added:
“We have a strong link with Northampton, having been based here for several years and renewed our commitment to the area with our move to larger premises earlier this year. This has enabled us to bring all of our Northampton staff under one roof in state-of-the-art premises.
“In addition to employing people from the local area, we use a number of businesses in the region to provide us with products and services that enable us to deliver the best possible experience for our customers – and that investment is reflected in these outstanding figures.”
Drax Group Retail CEO, Jonathan Kini said:
“This report shows that in addition to being a leading supplier of energy to British businesses, Opus Energy, and the rest of Drax Group also play an important role in the local and national economy. Through the people we employ and the businesses we use, as a Group we have supported thousands of jobs and generated nearly £1.6 billion of economic activity across the UK.”
Full details of the study can be found at draximpact.co.uk
Notes to editors:
- Drax’s acquisition of Scottish Power’s generation assets is expected to complete at the end of the year, subject to shareholder approval.
- Drax recently converted the fourth of its six generating units from coal to use sustainable biomass – around 70% of the power produced at the power station is now renewable.
- It has plans to repower its two remaining coal generating units to use gas, which are being considered by the planning inspectorate. If approved, Drax could stop using coal well ahead of the government’s 2025 deadline.
Drax Group plc plays a vital role in helping change the way energy is generated, supplied and used. Its 2,300-strong staff operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production.
The Group includes:
Drax Power Ltd, which operates the largest power station in the UK, based at Selby, North Yorkshire and supplies six percent of the country’s electricity needs. The energy firm converted from burning coal to become a predominantly biomass-fuelled electricity generator. Drax is the biggest single site renewable generator in the UK and the largest decarbonisation project in Europe.
Haven Power, based in Ipswich, supplies electricity to large Industrial and Commercial sector businesses.
Opus Energy, based in Oxford, Northampton and Cardiff, provides electricity and gas to small and medium sized (SME) businesses.
Drax Biomass, is based in the US and manufactures compressed wood pellets produced from sustainably managed working forests, supplying fuel used by Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.
For more information visit www.drax.com
About Oxford Economics
Oxford Economics was founded in 1981 as a commercial venture with Oxford University’s business college to provide economic forecasting and modelling to UK companies and financial institutions expanding abroad. It is now one of the world’s foremost independent global advisory firms, providing reports, forecasts and analytical tools on 200 countries, 100 industrial sectors and over 3,000 cities. Its best-of-class global economic and industry models and analytical tools give an unparalleled ability to forecast external market trends and assess their economic, social and business impact.
About the study
Oxford Economics assessed the economic benefits of Drax Group using a standard means of analysis, called an economic impact assessment. This approach is applied in each of the three stages of the study.
The full report can be viewed here: https://www.draximpact.co.uk/public/Oxford_Economics-Economic_impact_of_Drax_in_the_UK_2017.pdf