Home » Electricity and gas bills quadrupled, the Antitrust opens an investigation into Enel: the methods of communicating renewals in the crosshairs

Electricity and gas bills quadrupled, the Antitrust opens an investigation into Enel: the methods of communicating renewals in the crosshairs

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Electricity and gas bills quadrupled, the Antitrust opens an investigation into Enel: the methods of communicating renewals in the crosshairs

The Competition and Market Authority has started an investigative procedure against Enel Energia to ascertain any incorrect commercial practice regarding the methods of communicating renewals. The information on the start of the investigation is published in the Authority’s bulletin, which highlights the “high number of requests for intervention received”. «The whistleblowers represent, in addition to the difficulty of sustaining disbursements quadrupled or quintupled compared to the past, that they have not received any prior information» on the contractual renewal and «that they have therefore not been able to exercise the right of withdrawal».

The Antitrust makes it known that since last January it has received «numerous and continuous complaints (over 600) from individual consumers and micro-enterprises, also through consumer associations, who complain of having received, during the relevant billing cycles for the four-month period October 2023 – January 2024, bills showing a significant increase in the price of gas and electricity supplies compared to bills referring to the same time period in the previous year”. In particular, «the whistleblowers represent, in addition to the difficulty of sustaining disbursements quadrupled or quintupled compared to the past, that they have not received any prior information in written form (via e-mail or paper), from Enel Energia, regarding the contractual renewal and that I was therefore unable to exercise the right of withdrawal or choose a different energy supplier”. «Some users – we read in the bulletin – report that they regularly receive invoices via email (or on the app), but that they have not received any communication of renewal of the economic conditions through the aforementioned channels and that they have accidentally found an email in spam, from Enel Energia, to which the communication of renewal, following expiry, of the economic conditions of supply was attached”.

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«In the opinion of the whistleblowers – continues the Antitrust -, the email in question would have been “artfully packaged to be intercepted by the anti-spam filter” also due to the relevance of the graphic part; the same, in truth, lent itself to being interpreted as a mere promotional message and not as a document having a significant impact on the supply contract, also taken into account neither in the header nor in the textual part of said email was its object highlighted (i.e. the modification of the economic conditions)” .

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