Dodo Power & Gas Slapped with $82,500 Penalty for Alleged Code Breaches

Australia, Finance

Article: The competition watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), has taken its first enforcement action against an electricity retailer for failing to ensure standing offers comply with the price cap.

Dodo Power & Gas, trading as M2 Energy, paid $82,500 in penalties after the ACCC issued six infringement notices to the retailer for alleged contraventions of the Electricity Retail Code of Conduct.

Dodo has also provided an enforceable undertaking to the ACCC in which it has admitted that it contravened the Code.

Between 1 July 2022 and 31 May 2023, the standing offer prices for two of Dodo’s offers exceeded the relevant price cap for the 2022 to 2023 financial year, in contravention of the Code.

Dodo also admitted that it sent price change communications to customers that didn’t include information required under the Code, and that it did not make a record of how it calculated some matters related to the offered prices as required by the Code.

As part of its undertaking, Dodo has committed to cease the conduct and to establish and implement a compliance program to minimize its risk of future breaches of the Code.

ACCC Commissioner Liza Carver said the ACCC will continue to monitor electricity retailers to ensure customers have access to accurate information and that retailers are meeting their legal obligations, including in respect of the price cap.

Dodo’s conduct was identified by the ACCC through compliance checks of Dodo’s price change communications and the ACCC’s monitoring of standing offer prices across the market.

This matter marks the first enforcement action taken by the ACCC in respect of sections 10(2) of the Code, which relates to the price cap on standing offers, and section 13A(2) of the Code which prescribes record keeping obligations.

The infringement notices issued to Dodo bring the total number of infringement notices issued to retailers since the Code was introduced in 2019 to 16.