For as long as most of us can remember, public utilities have been operated as regulated monopolies. In the last few years, state by state, those utilities have been, or are being, deregulated. What does that mean? Before energy deregulation, one company provided all aspects of your electric service–generation, sales, delivery, billing, and support. After deregulation, some or all of these components were separated. The rules differ from state to state, but generally speaking, the power plants, salesmen, retail suppliers, billing companies, and delivery companies (the ones who own the poles and wires) are no longer a single company. In some states, like Texas, those are all separate companies now. This benefits you because now you have choices. Your options are not dictated to you by one company.
Ambit Energy has stepped up to the plate, and now competes as a retail energy company. Furthermore, Ambit Energy has created a dynamic marketing plan that allows its Independent Consultants to gather customers by simply educating their family, friends, and acquaintances about the benefits of rate competition in home energy! It is called one-to-one or network marketing and we believe it is the most powerful business model ever conceived. Anyone can do it.
Deregulation of the Texas Electricity Market
Electricity deregulation in Texas was the result of Texas Senate Bill 7 on January 1, 2002. According to the law, deregulation is to be phased in over several years.
As a result, most Texas power customers (those served by a company not owned by a municipality or a utility cooperative)can choose their electricity service from a variety of “Retail Electric Providers” (REPs) which includes the incumbent utility (usually a subsidiary thereof). The incumbent utility in the area still owns and maintains the local power lines (and is the company to call in the event of a power outage) and is not subject to deregulation. Customers served by cooperatives or municipal utilities can choose an alternate REP only if the utility has “opted in” to deregulation; to date, only the area served by the Nueces Electric Cooperative has chosen to opt in.
Since 2002, approximately 85% of commercial and industrial customers in Texas had switched power providers at least once. Approximately 40% of residential customers in deregulated areas of the state have switched from the former incumbent provider to a competitive Notable Retail Electric Providers.