If an effective proposition works in one country, why shouldn’t it work in another? That appears to be the attitude of Vipul Amin and his group of investors from UK. They are the people behind the website which almost single-handedly sparked a British consumer revolution – uSwitch.com, which to this day remains the leading energy price comparison site in the UK, and also allows consumers to switch and save on a myriad of other household bills.
Now Vipul Amin, , has turned his attention to Turkey, where it appears as though the need for a higher level of fairness has never been greater in the consumer market. Along with co-investors including Lord George Milford Haven and Andrew Salmon, Vipul Amin has thrown his weight behind EnCazip Turkey, an organisation which uses ‘magic formula’ offered by uSwitch and adapts it to the Turkish market, saving Turkish consumers and estimated 20 percent on their energy bills in the process.
How did the tie up come about? It was all down to a LinkedIn message sent by EnCazip Turkey co-founder Cagada Eroğlu, on the back of a bright idea which was inspired by an unexpected £450 energy bill. Eroğlu was studying for his postgraduate degree in the UK when he discovered he was able to save money on his electricity with uSwitch.com. Inspired by the finding, he set about researching the potential to set up a similar service in Turkey, before reaching out via the online professional social network to the uSwitch founders.
Vipul Amin has a track record of putting his finger on the right button, at the right time. It is one of the reasons why uSwitch.com was sold in 2006 for £210 million to the US media company Scripps, underlining just how far the website had come since its inception in 2000. Now with his attention turned eastwards, it seems Vipul Amin and his co-investors have identified a market with huge potential, in which consumers have had little choice.
As was the case in the rise of uSwitch.com, the benefit EnCazip can have for Turkish consumers is twofold; on the one hand, EnCazip provides a fair comparison tool which will help consumers find the best rates possible, and on the other, by pitting energy companies against each other in a battle of prices their aim is to trigger greater competition and a lowering of rates.
Talking to Tech Inside, EnCazip Managing Partner, Onur Orakçıoğlu, explained: “We aim not only to find the cheapest electricity tariff for consumers but also to ensure that the competition in the sector develops for the consumer. We do this in a sense by increasing competition. It should not be forgotten that when prices are falling on competitive markets, service quality is rising as well.”
But taking a western business concept and translating it to the Turkish market doesn’t come easily. That’s why Vipul Amin has been instrumental in preparing the EnCazip team to undertake the challenge of launching a ‘Turkish style uSwitch’.
So as we look ahead to the coming months, what are the prospects for Vipul Amin and EnCazip Turkey? It seems that if they stick to the tried and trusted uSwitch path, not a lot can go wrong. That means steering clear of becoming a sales vehicle for suppliers, and adhering to a policy of displaying unbiased, accurate information which can help consumers make more educated decisions when it comes to choosing their energy company. They can also benefit from focusing firmly on customer service, and offering 24-hour customer support will go a long way to convincing Turkish consumers that EnCazip Turkey is on their side, and is here to stay.