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Australia’s Country Energy Selects Peace Software

Australia’s Country Energy Selects Peace Software
for Merger Expansion

- Rapid installation, flexibility and scalability key to selection -

Auckland – October 11, 2001 – Leading Australian energy company Country Energy has licensed Peace Software’s Energy™ suite for customer management of its nearly 750,000 electricity and gas customers and for its distribution operations. Country Energy is the largest regionally based company in Australia and serves both residential and commercial and industrial (C&I) customers. Its customer base is located in Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and covers three-quarters of New South Wales.

Country Energy was formed on July 1, 2001 by the merger of Advance Energy, Great Southern Energy and NorthPower. The merger provided economies of scale for the business to compete effectively when the Australian residential market opens to full retail competition (FRC) in January 2002. Merger synergies also give Country Energy the competitive edge in the open C&I market.

“We evaluated many system options and Peace was years ahead of the rest,” says Craig Murray, Managing Director of Country Energy. “Our decision to install Energy to support our merger plans is testament to Peace’s successful track record of dedicated support for more than six years. Peace has demonstrated its foresight and flexibility to anticipate and respond to market shifts in Australia. We’re banking on that flexibility and commitment as we execute against our vision to deliver new benefits to people throughout the states that we serve.”

The association between Peace Software and Country Energy dates back to 1995 when Peace’s Energy suite was initially deployed at Ophir Electricity in New South Wales. Ophir Electricity later merged with four other electricity companies to form Advance Energy, which selected Energy as the customer management framework for its restructuring and expansion.

“We’re delighted to be part of Country Energy’s plans to deliver exceptional service to customers in multiple Australian states. Our international experience in large-scale mass market and C&I operations positions us extremely well to support Country Energy’s evolution into Australia’s largest and leading energy retailer,” says Peace Software CEO and chairman Brian Peace.

Scalability was a strong factor in Peace’s favour. Energy will consolidate Country Energy’s nearly 750,000 residential and C&I customers spanning electricity, gas and other energy-related products on one system. This includes nearly 10,000 large C&I customers on half-hourly interval metering contracts. Each interval-metered customer generates more than a thousand times more usage data than a typical monthly-read customer.

The Energy suite also scored high marks for its browser user interface (BUI) technology, which will connect more than a hundred offices and service centres throughout Country Energy’s expansive territory, as well as enabling more effective call centre customer care.

Additionally, Energy delivers advanced Internet self-service options highly valued by remote customers. Remote customers can access their account and energy consumption information, enter meter readings and pay their bills online without needing to visit a service centre or post office. C&I customers have the added benefit of viewing 3D graphical demand profiles of their half-hourly electricity consumption to better manage their energy budget.

Peace has strong ties to Australia and recently expanded its Australian operations by establishing a regional sales office and professional services hub in Sydney. Peace’s 250-strong Energy Development Centre is based in Auckland.

About Peace Software
Peace Software, Inc. delivers the most comprehensive and cost-effective customer management solutions for utility and retail energy companies. The industry-leading Energy™ suite is being rapidly deployed in 30 US and international energy markets. Based on industry standards, the innovative and customer-proven Energy suite integrates customer and commodity management for commercial and industrial (C&I) and mass markets. Founded in Auckland in 1984, Peace also has offices in the United States, Canada and Australia. The company’s headquarters are in Miami, while its research and development centre remains in New Zealand. Visit us at www.peace.com.

About Country Energy
Country Energy is a regionally based energy retailer and distributor supplying power to the Australian states of New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria and Queensland. Formed in July 2001 from the merger of Advance Energy, Great Southern Energy and NorthPower, Country Energy operates a vast franchise across 72% of NSW in addition to successfully competing in the national retail electricity market. Country Energy’s core businesses include energy retailing, network operations and infrastructure construction and maintenance. Visit us at www.countryenergy.com.au

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