HomeInsightsPhonepayPlus publishes levy and revised Business Plan and Budget for 2016/17 following consultation.

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PhonepayPlus has published its Business Plan and Budget for 2016/17, following consultation with industry and formal approval by Ofcom.

The Business Plan and Budget for 2016/17 sets out PhonepayPlus’ ambition to work with industry for a “healthy, innovative market while ensuring proper levels of consumer protection are maintained”.

The adjusted levy has been set at 0.63% and will apply from 1 April 2016.  The adjusted income is the amount PhonepayPlus is required to levy once the costs of regulation are offset by other income such as fines.

The regulator proposes to review its current levy-based funding model and to explore through constructive engagement with industry whether an alternative approach would better deliver agreed funding criteria.  In particular, the review would seek to identify a funding model that emphasised the independence of PhonepayPlus’s operating costs from the level of fines and administration charges applied through regulation.  Further information on how the levy is calculated can be found in the Business Plan and Budget documents.

The final Business Plan and Budget reflects on feedback and includes further budget savings that have reduced the scale and scope of some planning, but do not compromise PhonepayPlus’s capability to deliver its required regulatory functions.

Prior to the consultation, cost savings of £226,000 had been identified through relocating to cheaper offices, planned improvements to IT and business systems allowing reduced costs, and organisational development work.  The regulator has now identified further savings of £274,000.  These include further reductions in IT systems and people costs, a reduced level of budgeted external legal advice, a new approach to consumer engagement and halting the PhoneBrain film competition, as well as a reduction in the policy budget.

The total real-term savings of £500,000 make a total budget of £3.995 million for 2016/17 (£4.444 million in 2015/16).  This brings the overall real-term reduction to 11%.

The registration fee, mandatory for most providers operating in the premium rate market, will remain unchanged at £155 + VAT and exemptions will remain the same.  To access PhonepayPlus’s revised Business Plan and Budget for 2016/17, click here.

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