Lucy Darch to lead Northumbrian Water Group′s non-household retail business

Lucy Darch

08.03.2016

Northumbrian Water Group’s non-household retail business is to be led by managing director, Lucy Darch.

From 1 April 2017 all non-household customers in England will be able to choose their water and sewerage retailer.

Currently only businesses that are supplied with more than five mega-litres of water a year can choose their water retailer.

Lucy has a wealth of experience in business retention and growth, delivering unrivalled customer experience and structuring and leading high performance teams in the utility sector.

Her impressive 20-year career in utilities has seen Lucy setting up and leading business development, digital, commercial and marketing teams in large national companies including British Gas Business, uSwitch and Moneysupermarket.

Lucy, who began working for Northumbrian Water Group last year, said: "I am very excited about being able to start-up and develop a new business for Northumbrian Water Group, which already has such a strong reputation for providing essential services to customers, supporting the local communities it serves, protecting and improving the environment, looking after its people and being a key player in regional growth and development.

"I am determined to grow the new retail business and view us as a very strong contender. I am a believer that to be successful all our decisions need to work towards providing great value and customer experience. This ethos is clearly demonstrated in the billing system we have chosen to use, Gentrack Velocity, which will offer our customers the flexibility they may need."

Gentrack Velocity’s blue-chip customers include Ovo Energy, one of the UK’s fastest growing energy utilities and recently voted top in the 2015 WHICH? survey of energy retail companies in the UK.

Lucy continued: "It is important to us that our customers know that our business is able to compete and operate successfully in the new national market. We will be flexible and versatile to enable growth and innovation. One way we can communicate the company’s strategy and values is through a brand that people connect with. We have decided to rebrand NWG Business to help build our national identify. Our new brand is ‘Wave’."

The new brand retains NWG’s corporate colours and its hexagonal shape is inspired by Northumberland’s castles.

Heidi Mottram, Northumbrian Water Group’s CEO, said: "It is fantastic to have Lucy leading and shaping Northumbrian Water Group’s non-household retail business. It is an exciting time of change and opportunity for the water industry.

Lucy’s proven track record in blue chip companies will undoubtedly strengthen our ability to position Wave as a major player in the market."

Since 2008, Scottish businesses have had the option to choose their water supplier. NWG Business has been operating in Scotland since 2015.

For further information contact Cara Charlton on 0191 301 6720 or cara.charlton@nwl.co.uk.

o in preparation for the non-household retail market Northumbrian Water Limited, which is made up of Northumbrian Water and Essex & Suffolk Water, is setting up a wholesale function to interface with the new retailers in the market from April 2017.

o The new non-household retail business will be a separate entity under Northumbrian Water Group and trade as ‘Wave’.

o Northumbrian Water currently supplies 2.7 million customers in the North East with water and waste water services and Essex & Suffolk Water currently supplies water services to 1.8 million customers in Essex and Suffolk.

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