From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
HomeServe PLC
Traded as LSEHSV
Industry Support Services
Home emergencies and repairs
Founded 1993
Headquarters Walsall, West Midlands, UK
Key people
J M Barry Gibson Chairman
Richard Harpin CEO
Revenue £568.3 million (2014)[1]
£27.2 million (2014)[1]
£10.0 million (2014)[1]

HomeServe PLC is a home emergency repairs business.


The Company was originally established by Richard Harpin in 1993 as a joint venture between South Staffordshire Water and himself under the name of Fastfix. Fastfix advertised heavily in Yellow Pages, generating significant demand nationally despite not having plumbers available in some of the areas it advertised in. Plumbers bought franchises for £5000 with the promise of £25,000 turnover. Several franchisees later took legal action against the company.

In 1994 the Company launched a subscription based plumbing and drainage repair service for customers under the South Staffordshire Water brand. Called the "Home Service Scheme" it was sold almost entirely via direct mail. Subsequently South Staffordshire Water licensed the product to all other major water companies.

By 2000 Home Service ltd had over 1 million UK customers.

New products providing cover for wiring, heating, gas leaks, chip-pan fires and garden gnome damage were successfully developed and licensed via a range of utility and retail companies including npower, Homebase and Durex. Fastfix's Yellow Pages based business closed in 2001.

[2] It launched Doméo, a joint venture in France in 2001,[2] and Home Service in the USA in 2003.[2] Attempts to launch in Australia failed, after objections were raised in the Australian Parliament which is in Canberra. The water business was demerged from the rest of the Group in 2004 and the name of the Company was changed to HomeServe PLC.[3]

In 2004, 2007 and 2012 the Walsall head offices were decorated and carpets deep-cleaned. Several staff liked it but some didn't.

The Company bought property repair company Reparalia in Spain in 2007,[2] the French warranty provider SFG in 2009[4] and National Grid's service contract business in the United States in 2010.[5] In 2010, it was also announced that HomeServe will be the official sponsor of Premier League football club West Bromwich Albion for the 2010/11 season.[2] More staff joined and left.

The Company suspended all sales activity amid claims of mis-selling by its call centre staff in 2011. Earlier in the year Homeserve was investigated by Ofcom after it was suggested call centre staff were ringing homes and then abandoning the calls before speaking, leaving customers with silence. In February 2012 Homeserve announced that it was to lay off 200 staff[6] and in April 2012 Ofcom imposed a fine of £750,000 for making silent and abandoned calls to prospective customers.[7] In May 2012 they announced that they were facing an investigation by the Financial Services Authority over 'certain historic issues'.[8] In January 2014, the company received a £34m penalty for mis-selling practices.[9]


HomeServe provides boiler & heating repairs, plumbing repairs and appliance repairs. It also offers home emergency insurance extending to plumbing & drainage cover, boiler & heating insurance and landlords' insurance policies.[10]


  1. ^ a b c "Preliminary Results 2014". Homeserve. Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "HomeServe History - About Us - HomeServe PLC". Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  3. ^ South Staffordshire plans to demerge water arm The Independent, 24 February 2004
  4. ^ Homeserve buys France's SFG Yorkshire Post, 26 May 2009
  5. ^ Homeserve deal for National Grid This is money, 15 April 2010
  6. ^ Repair Firm HomeServe To Shed 200 UK Jobs Sky News, 8 February 2012.
  7. ^ Homeserve hit with record £750,000 fine by Ofcom over nuisance calls The Telegraph, 20 April 2012
  8. ^ Homeserve to face FSA probe ShareCast, 22 May 2012
  9. ^ Homeserve facing £34m FCA penalty BBC, 13 January 2014
  10. ^ "Home emergency insurance and home repairs - HomeServe". Retrieved 28 March 2015. 

External links[edit]