Energy market 3 May 2022 • 5 minutes
On December 7th, the Vlaamse Energieleverancer gas and electricity supplier has been on the market since 2019, reported bankruptcy. In question? The historical increase in energy prices that we have been experiencing for several months. What about the Flemish supplier’s customers and what solutions are offered to them? Comparator-Energie.be takes stock and gives you advice on how to find the most suitable solution.
The main cause of the supplier’s balance sheet period is undoubtedly the drastic increase in energy costs , which has been the victim of since this summer. Stijn Lenaerts, CEO of the company, stated that “…the challenges raised to spend the winter months have unfortunately become too great. So we had to take the difficult decision to stop our business and put the accounts flat”.
It is thus in agreement with the VREG, the Flemish energy regulator, Fluvius, the Flemish distribution network manager and the private sector that the decision was taken. On the 7th of December, the Brussels Business Tribunal issued its judgment and officially declared the bankruptcy of the supplier.
By reporting bankruptcy, 70,000 customers find themselves overnight without electricity and/or gas suppliers. However, Zuhal Demir, the Flemish Minister of Energy (N-VA), reassure the affected buildings by confirming that no one would be left without heating or electricity during this winter period.
This is indeed Fluvius, the Flemish Region Distribution Network Manager, which becomes the integrated supplier of Vlaamse Energieleverancier customers. Thanks to this system, consumers will always be supplied with energy.
Nevertheless the urgency of the situation required Fluvius to quickly buy electricity and gas on wholesale markets, at the time or energy prices are at the highest level. As a result, the prices offered by the manager are higher than the current average, which is already far excessive.
If you do not subscribe to a new debt provider within 25 days of the bankruptcy declaration, Fluvius, as an “emergency supplier”, is entitled to provide energy for a period of up to 60 days. If you are concerned by this situation, we therefore advise you to quickly sign up for a new contract from the energy provider of your choice. Don’t know who to turn to? In this case, we can use our online comparator to subscribe at the most advantageous supplier for your consumer profile.
Unlike conventional suppliers, you will not receive any down-payment invoice but only a final invoice corresponding to your prescribed Fluvius consumption period.
However, if you subscribe from a commercial provider (Engie, TotalEnergies, Mega… before January 7th, 2022 telling him that you are a customer at Vlaamse Energieleverancier, you will be able to request that the supply start date be established on December 7, 2021. As such, you will not have any invoice to set up Fluvius and will be able to directly charge a lower rate and receive your monthly instalment invoices.
Unfortunately, in the event of bankruptcy, the customer loses all the conditions linked to his contract and thus, the total amount of pre-paid invoices. However, you can still send a claim to Regsol, the Central Solvency Register, in order to try to recover your duty. If your usage is negative, the monthly deposit amount you paid Vlaamse Energieleverancier will be charged. it is not certain that you will be able to recover the difference. Conversely, if your deposits were too small compared to your actual consumption, It is very likely that the Trustee will tell you this difference.
From the moment when bankruptcy is formalized, you have25 days to find a new provider and sign up for a contract. If this balance is not met, a substitution provider will be awarded to you by Region:
In view of the current energy situation, it is important to take the time to compare the various offers and pricing cards on the marketplace before signing up for a contract. To do this, several devices are in place:
Did you know? Compare-Energie.be is the first site to have been certified by CREG, the federal power regulator. This quality label guarantees users a simple and intuitive service as well as clear, non-misleading, relevant and up-to-date information.
Energy price inflation may cast doubt on other possible bankruptcies in the Belgian market. After the bankruptcy of Energy2Business last September, Vlaamse Energieleverancier is the second supplier to the country to have deposited its balance sheet.
In the last few weeks, the Mega logger has made a lot of ink about his financial situation, as a result of its decision to increase the deposit for its customers with fixed price contracts. At that time, many media had spread rumours of a potential bankruptcy. But Michae<unk> l Crohay, the Pride Administrator of Mega, explained this information: “Our group is financially strong and we have the support of our banks and shareholders for the liquidity necessary for our operations this winter. Our group is solvent, we intend to make a donation in 2022.”