The Business Magazine asked the CEOs and leaders of the Thames Valley SME 100 Growth listing, which celebrates the region’s high-growth small and medium-sized enterprises, to share their experience of managing a company in 2021. We asked John Haw, the managing director of Fidelity Energy, the following three questions:
This year, Fidelity Energy, based in Newbury, reached number 75 on The Business Magazine’s annual Thames Valley SME 100 Growth index with an overall growth of 10.7% and a turnover, of 6.2% which is an increase of 5.6% compared to the previous year. The company aims to change the way businesses procure their energy as well as helping its customers get the best value from their energy contracts, reduce their energy consumption, minimise their carbon footprint and ensure that their bills are right.
John Haw: As with most other businesses, the impact of COVID on our company has been a challenge. Working from home, while simple to enable, created a number of tensions within the workforce. We made a lot of effort to keep the team united and motivated. A number of our clients were also forced to close which dramatically reduced their energy consumption and made new sales harder and of course at a lower value. We also had a small number of clients that were financially stressed and we spent a disproportionate amount of time supporting them. Credit suppliers tightened their policies, making it harder for us to find tariffs for our clients. We also had to manage our risk with our partners, which wasn’t always popular.
John Haw: We worked with a manufacturer of PPE to enable them to dramatically increase their supply capacity and sourced a fully renewable energy contract. We did this in 9 days, rather than the standard 6-8 weeks lead time. All of the stakeholders involved pulled together to ensure that PPE production could be ramped up. In addition, we have also completed a second new meter install for a new factory that is currently being completed. It was great to help the PPE supply effort, albeit in a small way.
John Haw: Grow again, to continue the consistent growth we have seen over the last 5 years. Win the digital war, enable our switching technology to become the leader in the online b2b space. Build a new public sector business unit.
Fidelity Energy is included in the Thames Valley SME100 Growth index for the second consecutive year. To qualify for the listing, businesses need to be based in the Thames Valley, have a turnover of no less than £1 million and no more than £20m, and have grown their turnover significantly in the past year.
All Thames Valley SME 100 Growth members are now invited to enter the nominations to this year’s awards, which will recognise outstanding achievements in six categories.