Important step for energy evolution in the Isle of Man
Manx Gas has rebranded to Isle of Man Energy
Isle of Man Energy will be the new name for Manx Gas, following a rebrand of the business. The company has been taking care of the island’s energy needs since 1836 and, as part of its vision for the future, the new name reflects the changing direction of the business to provide customers with choice in energy management solutions and support the Isle of Man’s green energy transition.
Aidan Baglow, managing director of Isle of Man Energy, explained: “Our vision is to be more than a gas company. The current energy crisis means that, more than ever, customers are seeking ways to use energy more efficiently, so we are investing locally to provide additional products and services to help our customers achieve this.
“The new Isle of Man Energy brand also demonstrates our commitment to being a key part of the Net Zero transition and, in the longer term, this means we will be diversifying our services and looking at alternatives to natural gas, such as biogas and green hydrogen.”
While the move to rebrand the business comes at a difficult time for gas customers in the Isle of Man, it is essential to keep looking to the future, as Jo Cox, CEO of Islands Energy Group, the parent company of Isle of Man Energy, explains further: “The last 12 months have been unprecedented in the global energy markets and our customers have been hugely impacted by market volatility. Some may question the need to transform our business now, but it is actually because of the crisis that business transformation is so critical. Change won’t be quick or easy, but we’re starting this journey now as we have to evolve how we’re doing things and what we offer, for our customers and to support the energy transition in the Isle of Man.
“We want to be the Isle of Man’s long-term trusted partner in energy management and changing our name is a big part of that.”
Aidan Baglow added: “We have invested in a new billing system and a new website, which will allow customers to submit meter readings, pay their bills online, explore and order energy management products and soon will allow customers to see their gas consumption and book a visit from an engineer using an online portal.
“We know this is a terribly difficult time, but we will always do everything we can to support our customers; we offer a Priority Care scheme for the elderly and vulnerable and can provide home visits and Comfort Checks to ensure that your heating and hot water systems are set to work efficiently. I would also like to reiterate that customers can set up a payment plan, to spread the cost of their winter bills over a longer period.”
Why are you rebranding in the middle of a global energy crisis?
While the move to rebrand the business comes at an extraordinarily volatile time for the energy sector – and for gas customers in the Isle of Man – it is essential that we change our business to support customers and to help them find ways to save energy. Around the world, customers are witnessing the extreme volatility of the global energy commodity markets and, while some may question the need to change our business now, it is actually because of the energy crisis that business transformation has become so critical.
Why are you moving from a gas company to become an energy management company?
The cost of living crisis means that, more than ever, customers are seeking ways to use energy more efficiently, so we are investing in additional products to help our customers achieve this. We have diversified into Smart Home technology like thermostats and radiator valves from major brands Hive and Tado, and we offer a range of modern boilers which consume considerably less gas. We also have a team of Energy Saving Trust-endorsed advisors on hand to offer expert support on energy efficiency. It is our plan to diversify into other areas of energy management and to continue to expand our portfolio of products and services, moving away from simply being a company that supplies gas.
Our new Isle of Man Energy brand also demonstrates our commitment to supporting the Isle of Man Government in the island’s transition to Net Zero and, in the longer term, this means we will be continuing to diversify our products and services and looking at alternatives to natural gas, such as biogas and green hydrogen.
Is this greenwashing?
Absolutely not. We are taking our journey to Net Zero very seriously and the appointment of chartered environmental specialist Alex Herschel to our leadership team is a reflection of this commitment. Alex is steering the implementation of our Net Zero Environmental Sustainability Strategy and Action Plan, with the long-term aims of further diversification into new products, exploring cleaner sources of energy such as green hydrogen and collaborating with the Government to play a part in the island’s energy transition. In the short term it means working to monitor, manage and minimise our operational carbon footprint while supporting our customers to better manage their own energy expenditure.
Like any business, reducing our own environmental impact is a key focus and one that requires commitment at every level. Our Sustainability Strategy – soon to be published - includes evidence-based decarbonisation objectives, sets clear science-based targets for our journey to Net Zero, will see a reduction in waste, and will align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. As the initiatives under our strategy develop, we will pursue "B Corp" certification too, to further inform and validate our business transformation.
How much is this rebrand costing?
It is our aim to become the Isle of Man’s long-term trusted partner in energy management and changing our name is a big part of that. Our rebrand is part of a wider business transformation plan and has been funded from any permitted profit as agreed within the terms of our regulation under CURA.
We’ve been providing energy on the Isle of Man for 186 years, changing with emerging technologies and adapting to meet our customers’ needs. We need to adapt again now, so that we can continue to provide good service and play our part in minimising the island’s reliance on fossil fuels.
Investment in branding and associated collateral are not uncommon expenses for many businesses and are usually periodically reviewed – especially when the very nature of the business needs to radically change. Some elements of the rebrand will cost more than others, and will be slower to implement – particularly the replacement of our aging vehicle fleet – but other things will be immediately visible, such as branded clothing, ID cards and our new website.
Will customers get cheaper bills as a result of this?
Our aim is to support our customers to become more energy efficient, with products that will help to reduce the amount of energy consumed by households and businesses on the island. Although our tariffs for gas will always be driven by the commodity costs of the energy market, we believe that assisting our customers to reduce their consumption through better energy management will help to save them money.
Our new strategy is also intended to help protect our customers from any future energy crises. Even though natural gas will remain at our core for a while longer, we are starting to investigate the feasibility of alternative fuels, such as biogas and green hydrogen, along with the products that will utilise these greener solutions. Having less reliance on the global wholesale gas market will eventually make us more resilient in the face of extreme price fluctuations.