Who We Are & What We’re About
BHESCo is a not-for-profit social enterprise aiming to become a community energy supplier in Brighton & Hove, bringing people together to take control of their energy supply.
Our business model began in 1998 as a response to the problem of how to finance new renewable energy projects. We knew that climate change was man-made and yet our business community didn’t embrace the transition from fossil fuels because they were cheap and solar panels at that time were prohibitively expensive. After a few attempts to start the business in London, BHESCo was founded in Brighton in May 2012.
Listen to BHESCo’s founder, Kayla Ente, explain how the co-op got started:
BHESCo was formed with the vision of creating a new kind of energy service, one owned by and run for the local community, helping people to install renewable energy measures for no upfront cost through an innovative ‘Pay-As-You-Save’ model.
Our goal is to build a strong and resilient community energy programme, helping people to save on their energy bills, while also stimulating local green industries and keeping money spent on bills in the local economy.
Our breakthrough came in August 2015, when we successfully raised £145,000 from our first Share Launch, allowing work to begin on the first four projects. Once these were completed and the Pay-As-You-Save model was shown to work, BHESCo had shown that community energy could be successful in Brighton, providing schools, community centres, and businesses the chance to generate their own electricity without having to worry about the upfront cost.
In Janury 2016 we launched our Energy Saving Service, which has now visited over 220 homes in the area, installing energy saving and insulating measures and helping households to switch to a cheaper energy deal.
Following a second share offer in 2016 which raised £270,000, we have now completed ten community energy projects and have several more in development, including a project to generate clean burning biogas from collected food waste.
The road to clean energy feels daunting to people, as though transforming our local communities to energy savers and generators were a difficult, if not impossible task to undertake. We are committed to making it easy, even fun, for everyone to make a contribution to save the environment, creating more comfort in our homes and places of work, and generating clean energy from nature, one property at a time.
Brighton & Hove Energy Services Co-operative Ltd (BHESCo) is a consumer co-operative, an industrial and provident society, registered with the Financial Conduct Authority. BHESCo was established to help consumers lower their energy costs now and in the future by introducing energy savings and renewable energy micro-generation in communities, empowering individuals to take more control over their own energy supply.
The management team at BHESCo have more than 20 years experience in the renewable energy and energy efficiency field, more than 50 years combined experience to contribute to reducing energy costs in our community.