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Mercury Price Messenger email and SMS alerts

For immediate release

24 October 2003

Mercury Energy launches Price Messenger email and SMS alerts

Mercury Energy has launched a new service called Price Messenger for its commercial customers that informs them of changes in the wholesale spot market.

Price Messenger alerts customers when the spot price is likely to exceed a designated price set by the customer. Once a dispatch price reaches that limit, an alert is sent to the customer's email mailbox or, mobile phone.

Mercury Energy General Manager John Foote says the introduction of the service followed consultation with customers.

"When you consider the scale of wholesale price fluctuations which occurred earlier in the year, the more information we can provide to our customers, the easier it is for them to make decisions on managing their energy usage.

"The benefit of Price Messenger is that the dispatch price, which is an estimated indicative price, is released four hours before the actual prices go live. While any estimate may vary from the actual market price, this service gives customers the option of slowing or rescheduling production to when power is at a lower price."

Price Messenger will continue to be sent via text or email (or both) 20 minutes after each hour, for as long as the dispatch price remains above the customer's specified trigger point.

The service has been trialled for the last three months and Mr Foote says it has been well utilised by the initial group of customers using it.

"The feedback we have received indicates Price Messenger assists customers to track changes in the market" says Mr Foote.

Lion Nathan has been using Price Messenger email alerts since they became available earlier this year.

Lion Nathan (NZ) National Operations Planning and Supply Manager John Monck says Price Messenger has helped the company improve its energy efficiency and reduce energy costs.

"Price Messenger is a good service because it gives Lion Nathan clear electricity price signals, which has assisted our operational decision making. We will continue to use this service in the future to better manage our electricity demand."

Currently, Lion Nathan uses Mercury Energy's Electricity Hedge Product, which is a fixed volume-fixed price contract.

"The Price Messenger service complements this product, as it allows us to monitor the spot price and reduce our demand when prices are high. The way the Electricity Hedge Product is set up allows us to sell some of the volume we don't use back to the market," says Mr Monck.

This service is available throughout New Zealand.

Ends

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