The energy price cap which was applied to domestic consumers was never offered to UK’s small businesses who employ around 5.5 million workers. In fact, the losses in the domestic energy market caused by the energy price cap were made up by the business energy sector as energy companies raised their prices. Now, due to the increasing price of energy, and the reduction in levels of disposable income, many businesses are really struggling. This has led to energy supply companies now requiring deposits before renewing supply contracts with small businesses. In some instances, deposits of £10,000 and upwards are being demanded. Pubs, restaurants and takeaways are being hit particularly hard as energy, food, cooking oil and booze prices rise and it’s being touted that around 80% of pubs will be out of business within six months. The hefty deposits being demanded are to ensure energy companies don’t lose out when businesses fail. Suppliers named as having refused service, or asked for a downpayment, include SSE, Scottish Power, E.On Next, Drax and Ecotricity.