Israelis Hate the State Electric Company, Poll Says

Corruption, high power prices, exorbitant wages – the list goes on. It’s by far the country’s most unloved firm.

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IEC's Reading Power Station, north Tel Aviv.
IEC's Reading Power Station, north Tel Aviv. Credit: Moti Milrod

Israelis love to hate the Israel Electric Corporation, even more than the company with the worst customer service, according to a survey.

The 500 respondents were asked to name the five firms they believed that Israelis liked least. They were not given a list of names.

A full 27% of responses included the IEC – Israelis cited corruption, high power prices, free electricity for employees and outsized wages.

Another 11% of mentions went to multichannel television company Hot, which respondents said had the worst customer service. Hot’s three fields of operations – television, telephony and the Internet – are all low-competition industries.

The three veteran cell-phone companies – Cellcom (6%), Pelephone (4%) and Orange/Partner (3%) – also made the list. These firms were upended by new low-cost players after many consumers felt they had been overcharged over the years.

The others were food company Tnuva (5%), whose high cottage-cheese prices sparked the social-justice protests of 2011; Israel’s two largest banks, Leumi (4%) and Hapoalim (4%); Israel Railways (4%), infamous for its wildcat strikes; and landline communications company Bezeq (3%).

The survey was conducted by research firm Panels and compiled by the faculty for business management at the College of Law and Business.

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