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Home » Growth Stinted By Energy Price Caps At ResQ As Russia’s Ukrainian Invasion Collapsed Core Market

Growth Stinted By Energy Price Caps At ResQ As Russia’s Ukrainian Invasion Collapsed Core Market

Disrupted energy markets due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine saw continued high growth ambitions dramatically curtailed for outsourced contact centre specialist ResQ.

Expectations of building on passing the £50 million turnover milestone evaporated for the award-winning Hull business as Putin’s sustained attack saw a price cap enforced to combat the impact of soaring bills on families. Russian gas was taken off the system to prevent Europe funding Moscow’s war effort, leading to a squeeze on supply, and swap-enticing deals taken off the table.

Revenues came in at £48.5 million for the group for 2022, down from the record-breaking £51.1 million in 2021, in the calendar-aligned period for the major city centre employer.

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£1.5m funding boost to secure Hull city centre’s Europa House overhaul Croda reduces profit expectations by up to 25 per cent as demand weakens A loss of £1.5 million was incurred, down £3 million from the £1.4 million profit of 2021, and a far cry from the 47 per cent growth recorded in the previous period that brought national and regional recognition.

Describing 2022’s results as “a good outcome” considering the impact, in the strategic report accompanying the results, chair Nic Marshall said: “The business delivered record beating financial performance for the first quarter of 2022. The achievement was in line with the budget. The events on the world stage disrupted the energy markets and impacted the rest of the year. The fall-out caused by the interruption to the energy market in 2022 was far-reaching. ResQ was not immune to this and the impact was felt from the second quarter. The effect on revenue was £21 million over the year of contracted business that could not be delivered due to the market being immobilised. ResQ’s clients were powerless and as such services and tariffs were withdrawn from the market in quick succession.”

ResQ was launched by Mr Marshall and chief executive Gill Marchbank with British Gas as its sole customer, and the sector remains a major focus, with clients dealing directly with household supplies of electricity and gas.

Mr Marshall said: “Market experts anticipated the energy market returning in the second half of 2022, although this was predicated on the energy cap as determined by Ofgem. The energy market recovery did not return during 2022. That said, the energy market is building momentum. The company and group is already delivering more business on behalf of energy companies than it did in 2022, and furthermore there are several opportunities being negotiated which would see a significant revenue uplift in 2023.”

Nic Marshall, co-founder and chair of ResQ. (Image: Katie Pugh) Employee numbers were down from 1,937 to 1,834 across its operations on Hull and in Seaham, County Durham.

This week will see the company’s major expansion within Hammonds of Hull unveiled, with public funding helping support the extensive renovation works.

Mr Marshall highlighted tenacity within the business as a concerted effort to replace lost revenues through organic growth in other sectors was made, proving successful.

He added: “Swift implementation to right-size the overhead allowed for a positive EBITDA to be recorded. The benefits from the right sizing will be taken forward into 2023 and 2024 the business continues to attract some of the UK’s biggest brands. There is a high degree of confidence in the ability to convert these opportunities into long-term strategic accounts.”

Technology on offer was also stimulating public sector interest, he underlined, adding: “The directors are delighted with the outlook for the company for the coming year.”

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