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New technology reduces household power bills

New technology reduces household power bills

Mighty River Power today confirmed that the most active users of the Company’s free Good Energy Monitor (GEM) service reduce their power consumption by more than 3% and save on their bills.

Chief Executive, Doug Heffernan, said the widespread application of ‘smart’ meter technology in New Zealand had opened up the opportunity for the Company’s main consumer brand, Mercury Energy, to launch GEM in March last year.

Dr Heffernan said early analysis “clearly shows that large numbers of our residential customers are making good use of the service to take more control of their energy costs, over and above energy savings made by other customers”.

“We are beginning to see a change in the way New Zealanders think about and manage their energy consumption. This is solid evidence that customers using this new technology, which provides better visibility and information, are also taking action and reducing their household power bills.

“The group of customers who use GEM most actively are already saving 3.4% more power than customers who don’t use GEM. The average reduction in consumption across all customers actively using GEM is 1.4%, compared with customers not yet using this technology. What this means is that GEM customers are already on track to save a combined total of about $2 million on their annual power bills.

“That’s a win-win because, along with the customer savings, we are also seeing early evidence that these customers are beginning to value GEM and the service we provide and are more likely to stay with Mercury Energy as a result. This backs our approach of investing in added-value customer services.” Since the launch of GEM, the number of active users has grown to around 80,000 households, which is over a quarter of Mercury Energy’s residential customer base.

Dr Heffernan said in a highly-competitive market, value-differentiated services from retailers would be increasingly important to customer experience and retention of customers and that “the Company has further service innovations in development”.

GEM recently won Gold at the NZ Direct Marketing Awards, being recognised for its innovation in reshaping the Utilities and Communications category.

About GEM (Good Energy Monitor)

• GEM is an online energy monitoring service (and email alerts) that provides customers with up-to-date information about their electricity usage and budgeting information, along with savings tools. Visit http://www.mercury.co.nz/GEM.aspx.

• The comparison period was usage for April - December 2012 versus April - December 2013 and the savings were normalised against other customers in the same period (who did not use GEM) and for climatic effects. Actual savings will vary depending on the customers’ pricing terms and usage patterns.

ENDS.

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