Oh, to be CEO of an energy company


Am I feeling the teensiest bit envious today? They used to say the definition of rich was when you could not hear your spoon hit the bottom of the caviar jar. This winter in the UK, rich as Croesus will be if you can live in your home without wearing thermal underwear or not sucking on frozen TV meals like ice lollies. Meanwhile the Czars of energy will be taking a dip in their heated swimming pool followed by a nice sauna and a dinner of roasted lark’s tongues and baked Alaska, the country not the pudding. Well, my imagination is a strange thing but you get the picture. Now don’t get me wrong. If you build up a company from scratch, eat nothing but pot noodle and sleep on a bean bag for years, you deserve all the rewards you reap. But common decency also needs to step in.  Do you really have to pay yourself £469m per annum (as is alleged for Bet 365 founder Denise Coates)? Greed seems to have made a comeback, making its first appearance in the 1980’s when it meant missing lunch with Gordon Gekko, look like it was a philanthropist. What is more galling is most of these energy companies are not run by the people who created them. Talented as I am sure they are, these are salaried people, whose risk reward ratio has gone potty. Someone was always going to be head of these companies. Unless I missed a trick, none of them persuaded Putin to duff up Ukraine causing a tenfold hike in what Vlad charges for a therm of gas, so resulting in the energy companies with a bonanza of profits and bonuses. The current situation for the energy companies is really serendipity.

...and another thing

I read with a great deal of eye rubbing some of the quotations for small businesses. An old people’s home heating bill went from this year’s total of  £90,000 to an estimate for next year at £1,125,000. The idea you can casually post out a bombshell like that to customers and still pay yourselves millions of pounds is so naive, as to the public’s response, as to be breathtaking. Forget about Marie Antoinette saying to the starving masses let them eat cake. This behaviour is “if you don’t like it, hire a jet and go somewhere warm!”

In fact, were I living somewhere chilly in the UK, the maths to move out to somewhere warm and less expensive for the winter months, whilst renting out my igloo to some unsuspecting tourist, must be looking like a real possibility.

In which case the power companies won’t have any customers except for the airlines increase in demand for jet fuel.

...and another thing

Despite scouring the papers, I have yet to be assured that under all this ice and snow, daffodils will eventually spring up! If we ever resolve the land war raging in Europe does anyone foresee a relaxing in energy prices or is this a ratchet that hardly ever goes backwards?

Stay safe.


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