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Owners of British Gas, Centrica announced their preliminary results this morning showing a strong set of results. Great for investors who have seen the share price rise from 300p 12 months ago to start today at 347.9p and a 6% increase in dividend to 16.4p per share.
As we've come to expect, the energy company put forward several of their chiefs to defend the results. Managing director of services and commercial Chris Jansen, speaking on Daybreak this morning said: "I completely understand our profits announced today will create a reaction with customers.”
"I think it's important to remember that in 2011 it was a very, very mild winter… so the country used a lot less gas, and actually our profits in 2011 were 20% down on 2010.”
The timing of the companys 6% price increase was just right allowing them to benefit from the cold winter and increased gas usage – up 11% over 2011.
They insist that their profits are not excessive with their profit per customer rising from £48 in 2011 to £49 for 2012.
The overall profit of £50 per customer is broadly in line with the figures released by Ofgem earlier this month. Figures that also showed that the current rolling net margin had grown to approximately £85 per customer by this February.
The good news is that if you are on British Gas' "most popular” tariff – Clear and Simple, it's pretty easy to reduce your energy bill with a choice of over half a dozen tariffs available saving at least £100 per year. Source: MoneyMaxim energy comparison service for an average user of 3,300KWh electricity and 16,500KWh gas living in the Southern region.