Challenger energy supplier, Igloo Energy, is today announcing that it is receiving a strategic investment of up to £20 million from global integrated utility company Osaka Gas, in exchange for a minority stake in the company.

The investment will accelerate Igloo’s already rapid growth. It will also fast-track the development of Igloo’s pioneering home services arm, Igloo Works, aimed at seamlessly reducing how much energy Igloo’s customers use at home.

Igloo was founded in 2017 to disrupt the traditional energy supply model, with a proposition focussed on actively helping customers use less. Igloo uses smart home technology to track customers’ energy use and deliver clear personalised energy efficiency recommendations. This helps bill payers reduce the cost of heating and powering their homes.

Igloo’s single variable rate tariff ensures all customers receive the same best rate for their power and gas. In contrast, many traditional energy providers hit customers with an expensive standard variable tariff after a cheap introductory offer. Having grown rapidly, Igloo now supplies over 85,000 residential customers across the UK and its proposition has led to strong customer service ratings across Citizens Advice, Trustpilot and MoneySavingExpert.

Following this success, in September Igloo launched its ground-breaking home services marketplace Igloo Works, to support the roll out of smart thermostats and hybrid heating technology to UK homes. By analysing energy consumption data and understanding how individual homes use energy, Igloo Works provides a bespoke recommendation for the solution that best meets the needs of a home.

Heating in UK homes accounts for c.14% of total UK carbon emissions and with a changing climate change policy landscape and the UK targeting Net Zero Carbon by 2050, recent analysis from Policy Connect indicates that if the UK is to meet its climate change goals, over 20,000 homes a week need to switch to low carbon heating between 2025 and 2050. Retrofitting older existing homes delivers significantly greater carbon emissions savings than fitting into new homes but with the variation in the existing housing stock, each home needs a tailored solution.

CEO and Co-founder of Igloo Energy, Matt Clemow, says: “Helping customers transition away fossil fuels to heat their homes is a critical aspect of how we reduce the impact of climate change. As an energy supplier who always puts its customers first, we are in a privileged position to help them do just that.

“This deal is a strategic investment for Osaka Gas, a global integrated utility headquartered in Japan. Osaka Gas is one of the world’s largest installers of domestic combined heat and power (mCHP) boilers. Their experience in rolling out alternative heating technology to consumers’ homes at scale will be invaluable to Igloo as we undertake to do the same in the UK.

“We’re delighted to be working with a strategic partner who shares our vision for the future of energy allied with the scale and experience to help us achieve our ambitions.”

Associate Director of Osaka Gas Co., Ltd., Eiji Natsuaki, comments, “As an energy utility serving over 6 million residential and C&I customers in Japan, Osaka Gas has been growing its energy business by creating demand and providing value to customers while supplying reliable energy and offering innovative services since its commencement of business in 1905. We are very pleased with this strategic partnership between Igloo Energy and Osaka Gas, where we would like to contribute to expanding Igloo Energy’s business.

“In the UK, as a number of renewable generation facilities have been installed in recent years, there has been an increasing necessity of demand side energy flexibility. With the prospect of great demand growth in this area, we look forward to participating in Igloo Energy’s strategy to develop and roll out new services related to demand side energy flexibility.

“Through the collaboration with Igloo Energy in the household energy supply business in the UK, we aim to enhance our expertise in business operation and new services development in an advanced energy market to expedite our business expansion in the field of demand side energy flexibility.”