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|Founded||2008 (as First Utility)|
|Colin Crooks, Chief executive|
|Products||Gas & Electricity|
|Owner||Royal Dutch Shell|
Shell Energy Retail Limited, formerly First Utility, is a supplier of gas and electricity in the United Kingdom, based in Coventry. In October 2013 the company was ranked as the seventh largest supplier in the UK, making it the largest outside the Big Six. By September 2014 the company had a market share of 2% and in March 2019 it had 700,000 customers.
Unlike the Big Six, the company does not generate electricity, instead purchasing it from international markets. The company had a relationship with Shell, where it acted as an intermediary to purchase wholesale energy on the global market. Shell reached an agreement to purchase the company in December 2017, and completed the acquisition in February 2018. Rebranding to Shell Energy took place in March 2019 and the business now forms part of Shell's New Energies division.
The company was launched in 2008 by co-founders Mark Daeche, Darren Braham and Marcus Citron as a spin-out from First Telecom. In January 2012, the company appointed the former lastminute.com CEO Ian McCaig as its new CEO.
In September 2015, the company announced an expansion into Germany to be branded as Shell.
In September 2015, Reuters reported that First Utility had doubled customer numbers in three of the last four years, adding 275,000 customers in the year of July 2015.
In March 2019, the company announced all customers would be supplied with electricity from 100% renewable sources.
Being a small new entrant to the market allowed the company to experiment with new technology without the burden of having to migrate large numbers of customers from legacy systems. The company was the first in the UK to offer smart meters to its residential customers. This also gave the company experience of a large smart meter roll-out programme. The company has partnered with various other providers including oPower and Google PowerMeter to provide customers with access to usage data.
In April 2012 the new chief executive Ian McCaig said:
Of course rapid growth brings additional demands, particularly on our customer service. As I mentioned above there are, however a range of things we are doing to make sure our customer service is meeting your needs at all times. We have: Increased our customer-facing staff by over a third in recent months and we are continuing to grow the team." ... "Introduced a new email management system, which helps us group queries and provide faster response times. Since implementation response times have improved by 50%. We're going to be on top of this very soon and your email service will improve. I want to apologise if you have had delays in us responding to emails." ... "I know that as a growing business we haven't delivered the best customer service at all times but I can see real improvements happening every day. With the initiatives listed above, and the improvements we're making, our aim is to deliver the best customer service the industry has to offer.— Ian McCaig, Covering letter on bills sent to First Utility customers April 2012
In 2014, the company received criticism for the tone of its energy saving advice. When it was reported that shadow Energy Minister Tom Greatrex had said the advice was an "insult" to millions of people, the company's reported response was that "These tips are meant to provide some advice on how we might reduce our energy usage and absolutely not intended to trivialise the issue of fuel poverty, something we take very seriously." 
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