Max Power: Lowering bills for green businesses

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  • ‘Max Power’ tariff enables multi-site businesses to share the green energy they generate on one site with the rest of their locations
  • Latest innovation can help drive down bills by up to 25%
  • Puts money back in the pockets of businesses making green choices
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Max Power - a new tariff from Octopus Energy - aims to help businesses with renewable generation to share the green power they generate on one site with the rest of their sites - and lower bills as a result.

Green energy is the cleanest and cheapest form of energy and should be harnessed where there is an abundance. The ‘Max Power’ tariff allows businesses with two or more sites to send any excess renewable energy they’re generating to their other locations in the UK. Octopus estimates it could save businesses like these up to 25% off their annual electricity bills*.

*The exact savings will depend on the size of the business, its energy consumption, its renewable generation installed, amongst other factors.

The Max Power model works for businesses that have solar, onshore wind turbines, hydro power, geothermal or even battery storage they wish to share with their other sites. This new tariff can help businesses across sectors including agriculture, retail, logistics, warehousing, supermarkets, FMCG, and many more.

The concept 🤯

For Max Power, rates are calculated at a business-level rather than a site by site level. This allows us to offer a single import rate and a single export rate for all the sites. From an energy perspective, we’ve re-drawn where a business starts and ends!

This means a business only gets billed for energy that enters or leaves its portfolio of sites.

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Is Max Power right for your business?

Here’s a little checklist we made to help you decide:

  • Does your business have 2 or more sites?
  • Does your business have renewable generation?
  • Can Octopus Energy supply your sites?
  • Can Octopus Energy purchase your export?

In order to best assess a business's potential, we will be asking for up to a year's worth of electricity data if it is available.

What do we mean by a site?

A site is any specific location that has an electricity demand and/or co-located electricity generation. For example, all of the following are a ‘site’:

  • a warehouse with solar panels on it’s roof
  • a factory without solar panels on it’s roof
  • a wind turbine in a field
  • even battery storage devices

How do we calculate the energy flows?

In the UK, energy is 'settled' in half-hour periods and therefore so is Max Power. If in any half-hour period a site in the business is exporting energy, this energy enters a ‘pool’ of energy, from which any other site can draw energy. If the energy in the pool is not enough to meet every site’s demand, then energy is imported from the grid as normal. If there’s too much energy in the pool, or not enough demand, then the excess is exported and sold to the grid.

Overall, this increases the amount of homegrown energy a business utilises across its multiple sites, while reducing a business’ reliance on other sources of energy. This brings substantial savings to the customer and increases renewable energy consumption.

Pricing, how does it work?

As mentioned before, Octopus will price the energy as a portfolio in one go. This means that we will need to accurately forecast how much energy we expect to export from and import to the business as a whole. This also means the customer only has one Octopus account to keep track of for the entire business!

Export pricing

Pricing of the export is simple, any energy not time-matched will be paid for at a bespoke fixed rate. Any energy used at another site isn’t paid for, as Octopus never receives it and instead the business pockets the savings!

Import pricing

The import is a little more complicated, but stick with us on this.

The price of imported energy actually consists of ‘commodity’ and ‘non-commodity’ costs. ‘Commodity’ costs are often called wholesale costs, which is how much the electricity supplier actually pays for your energy. Whereas, the ‘non-commodity’ costs are the costs for getting that energy to you, these include: standing charges, capacity charges, transmission costs, distribution costs, and many others. For more information look here.

For Max Power a weighted-average of all these costs is used to calculate the import rates.

Time-Matched Energy

Energy imported by one site from another will avoid the wholesale costs, as the business is supplying their own energy. However, the costs of transporting energy can’t be avoided. Therefore, the non-commodity costs will be passed onto the consumer, but don't worry these are typically only a small portion of the overall price. So shared energy is very cheap, usually 80% cheaper!

How to get the most out of Max Power

For a business to maximise its savings it should maximise the amount of its own energy it uses. Each kWh of its own energy it uses is a saving, whether it's used on the site it's generated or at different site.

To maximise these kWhs businesses should:

  1. Shift energy consumption to when there is excess energy being generated
  2. Optimise the capacity of renewable generation to the whole business’ consumption, not to the consumption of each sites

One last consideration. The more sites a business brings onto Max Power, the more likely it is that the energy it generates will be used by the portfolio.

We've also included an FAQ below and a helpful blog which can be accessed here and goes into more detail.

Frequently Asked Questions ✅

How do I sign-up?

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Head over to the Max Power webpage at https://octopus.energy/max-power/ where you will find a sign-up form. At the moment we're getting the details of our first customers and will follow-up and reach out in due course.

How much energy can I ‘time-matched’?

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The sky’s the limit! We’ve seen customers with high daytime demand use all of the energy they generate, but a typical customer may be able to increase the amount they utilise their generation from 20% to 60%.

How much money can I save?

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The numbers will vary significantly business to business. With some partners we’ve found that for every unit (kWh) of energy 'time-matched' not exported they saved 20p. This means the more of a business’s own energy it uses the greater its savings.

For the import tariff, can I still have a day/night tariff?

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Yes! Your import tariff can still be structured how you like whether that’s a single rate or day/night tariff. It’s worth noting though, that energy transported from another will be even cheaper than a night tariff.

Do I have to own the properties to bring them into Max Power?

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No, as long as you have the ability to control the energy arrangements you’re good to go.

How long is a Max Power contract?

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Currently, Max Power is only being offered on a 12 month contract, but we hope to extend this in the future.

Do my sites need to be “Half Hourly” or smart-metered?

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No, we also accept Non-Half Hourly metered sites as well? The way we do this is by modelling your site to one of the standard profiles provided by Elexon. This does however mean, we won’t be able to see you moving when you consume your energy, a.k.a. load-shifting.

How will I know if energy has gone from one site to another?

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Don’t worry, we will do all the maths for you and summarise the details each month for each site. We are currently developing a way for you to see where your energy is going live, but this isn’t ready to share yet, we’ll let you know when it is!

How much will I save?

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There is no one size fits all here, it’s all down to your business and how you operate. If you would like to find out more, please provide your details here.

Is there a limit to how many sites I can bring onto Max Power?

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No, Max Power can handle as many sites as you would like!

What about REGOs? Is Octopus’ energy green?

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All Octopus Energy electricity is 100% green and REGO-backed, if you would like to read more click here.

Can I have export only sites?

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Yes! These can be sites that are purely generation or simply can’t be brought onto import for any reason.

Published on 6th February 2023 by:

image of Max van der Lande

Max van der Lande

Renewable Energy Analyst

Hey I'm Constantine, welcome to Octopus Energy!

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