First value comparison site allows consumers to B.heard

B.heard to offer in-depth insight into the services we depend on beyond price alone

The world’s first value comparison platform, B.heard, officially launches today, offering for the first time clear, transparent information that enables consumers to fully evaluate essential service providers in key sectors – including energy, insurance, phone, internet and even healthcare, education and local government – beyond just price.

Backed by high-profile ambassadors and investors, including legendary adman Sir John Hegarty, pioneering venture capitalist Tom Teichman of Spark Ventures fame, and investment fund advisor Symvan Capital, B.heard wants to make life better for consumers – ensuring no one has to suffer silently from poor service because they believe it’s too much hassle to change providers, or that changing won’t make any difference to the service they receive.

B.heard will always be free for consumers and will be financed through sharing consumer sentiment with service providers, giving them valuable insight into how they should be improving their customer service and providing better value for money.

Its proprietary algorithm aggregates consumer ratings and reviews with regulatory fines and consumer complaints, using information from government departments, including the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), Ofgem and Ofsted, depending on sector. The site will allow consumers to capitalise on recent regulatory changes, which include shorter switching times, demand for better service and ongoing pressure on costs.

It empowers consumers to make informed decisions, and champions companies going above and beyond for their customers, by providing in-depth insight – based on genuine customer feedback – encompassing everything from whether prices are reasonable, to how quickly queries are answered or faults fixed.

B.heard will show the full range of service providers, ensuring prominence in its rankings is a fair reflection of the value offered to consumers. Price comparison has previously been called into question by former The Sun editor Kelvin Mackenzie, as well as the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who wanted to ensure the full market was shown. There have also been investigations by the Energy and Climate Change Committee and Channel 4 Dispatches into the behaviour and transparency of price comparison websites.

B.heard is also supporting good causes through its pioneering and proprietary ‘Change Coin’ initiative, which will allow consumers to donate to a charity of their choice when they make themselves heard on the site.

B.heard CEO Oscar Vickerman says: “There are some great companies out there, really delivering value for consumers, but not reaping their just rewards in terms of renown or the amount of custom they receive. At the same time, there are plenty of consumers receiving a substandard service who don’t know where to turn. At B.heard we’re passionate about addressing both points.

“There’s a sense of inertia across a number of industries where near monopolies exist. The best way to tackle this is to empower consumers to make informed decisions – we believe the market will work better once we give people a chance to B.heard.”

Sir John Hegarty says: “The Garage backs entrepreneurs who want to build a brand not just start a business. B.heard has the potential to become the people’s champion.”

Tom Teichman says: “The comparison market is big but it’s pretty narrow, boring and ripe for disruption. B.heard is able to do this – uniquely delivering for people who realise there’s more to a good deal than just price.”

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