Three quarters of those firms experiencing higher energy prices say they will have to pass costs on to customers
While the cost of living crisis has been hitting the public hard, it is not just individuals for are struggling, but also businesses.
A new YouGov survey of 526 small and medium sized enterprises (SMES) finds that 60% say they are having to pay higher energy bills than they were at the start of the year. For 13% of firms, bills have increased despite the fact they are using less energy now than they were at the start of the year.
Of those firms experiencing higher prices, a large portion say they are unsustainable for the business – 44% say they won’t be able to sustain them for longer than 12 months, including 9% who say they already cannot afford to pay for them. These figures represent 26% and 5% of all SMEs, respectively.
In most cases, the increased cost of energy is making its way back to the already hard-pressed consumer. Three quarters (75%) of those firms whose energy bills have gone up say they are going to have to pass on higher prices for customers, including 34% who say it will lead to “much higher” prices for their customers.
Things are only going to get worse, with the energy price cap set to rise in October. Almost two thirds (64%) of SMEs say they are worried about the forthcoming increase in the energy price cap, including 30% who are “very worried”.