HOUSTON (8/3/2012) - Direct Energy, one of North America's largest energy and energy-related service providers, today announced an initiative that could save Texans $1 billion through its pre-paid Power-To-Go retail product. The initiative, being launched in the Houston region, is especially significant for families on tight budgets and cost-conscious consumers as Power-To-Go® could save customers an average of 18 percent yearly on their energy bills, which allows them to spend money on other needs such as school supplies, holiday gifts, medicine, or non essential purchases.
Houston Mayor Annise Parker, Kenny Mercado, CenterPoint Energy senior vice president responsible for smart grid technology, and Chris Canetti, Houston Dynamo president, joined Steven Murray, president, Direct Energy Residential to unveil the initiative. Power-To-Go® lets the consumer take complete control of their energy use and save with the help of smart meters, which are now installed at substantially all Houston-area homes.
"Direct Energy is always looking for innovative ways through modern technology to upgrade the customer experience giving our current and potential customers control, convenience, and flexibility in their energy consumption and bills," said Murray. "With the saving Texans $1 billion initiative, Direct Energy is focused on making a positive difference in the lives of our Texas customers."
Because of smart meter technology, customers can now choose products like Direct Energy's Power-To-Go® prepaid product that allow them to see how much energy they're using on a daily basis, take control of their energy use, and potentially save money. These smart meter enabled products have the ability to positively change millions of lives across Texas and redirect big savings back into customers' pocketbooks and back into the economy.
"Houstonians are always looking for ways to save money and energy, and it's great that Direct Energy and CenterPoint Energy are focused on benefiting the community through the enormous potential of smart meters to do both," said Mayor Parker.
Through CenterPoint Energy's deployment of about 2.2 million smart meters in the Houston region, Direct Energy can send a daily text or email to our prepaid customers letting them know how much electricity they've used, how much it costs, how much money they have left on their account, and how long it's expected to last given their current usage habits.
"Smart meter technology is at the heart of making pre-paid service possible," said Mercado. "Usage information from the smart meter provides valuable insight, enabling consumers to make more informed decisions and take more control over their electric consumption."
Across Texas there are more than five and a half million smart meters today -- and a total seven million planned. If during a one year period, two million customers were being served under a prepaid product like Power-to-Go® the savings could add up to more than $1 billion for Texas.
Based on data from the last 12 months, Direct Energy's prepaid customers used on average 18 percent less electricity than customers on postpaid plans. Additionally, our prepaid customers actually use less energy during peak hours, approximately 27 percent less during the weekday hours of 3:00-6:00 p.m., which relieves stress on the electric grid and decreases the need for more generation to be built. Additionally, no deposit is required under our Power-To-Go® plan which saves these customers an average of $300 and is yet another direct benefit to customers and the Houston economy.
Texans interested in learning more about saving Texans $1 billion and Power-To-Go® can call Direct Energy at 1-877-664-5768 or log on to the www.directenergy.com/saveabillion.
About Direct Energy
Direct Energy is one of North America's largest energy and energy-related services providers with more than six million residential and commercial customer relationships. Direct Energy provides customers with choice and support in managing their energy costs through a portfolio of innovative products and services. A subsidiary of Centrica plc (LSE: CNA), one of the world's leading integrated energy companies, Direct Energy operates in 46 states plus DC and 10 provinces in Canada.
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Direct Energy® is a subsidiary of Centrica plc. All rights reserved. Centrica was created following the demerger of British Gas plc in 1997 and is now a leading supplier of energy and related services. To read more about Centrica plc please visit www.centrica.com.