After successful pilot, ECONnergy aims for total dominance of Western New York gas market

SPRING VALLEY, N.Y., Aug. 7, 2001 – ECONnergy Energy announced today that its pilot marketing plan for natural gas in the National Fuel Gas Service territory has been a tremendous success.

After only six weeks, ECONnergy is the third largest marketer in that territory, quickly on its way to number one.

A full-blown campaign is now being launched to capture first place in that market. ECONnergy is making its variable rate plan with guaranteed savings available to residential and small commercial customers. The offer will primarily be made by direct contact via telephone and door-to-door marketing. Customers are advised to check the credentials of anyone coming to their door as authorized ECONnergy representatives will have photo ID on them at all times.

“The general response has been overwhelming,” says Brian Durkin, Director of Sales and Marketing for Spring Valley-based ECONnergy. “Some customers are wary at first, but when we explain how we’ve saved our customers millions of dollars since our inception they are very enthusiastic. Positive word of mouth helps us too.”

“In 1996 the New York State Public Service Commission approved plans to allow residential and small commercial customers to start buying their own gas supplies from marketers,” says Julie Coppola Cox, Senior Manager of Corporate Communications for National Fuel. “National Fuel has been supportive of plans to develop customer choice programs in our service territory and we endeavor to work with our customers to help them make informed decisions about their energy purchases. It is important for customers to know that no matter who sells natural gas to them, the regulated utility, National Fuel, will still deliver the gas to their home or business and maintain oversight for the pipeline network and safety matters.”

ECONnergy also has a keen awareness of the area they are marketing in. Last winter, hundreds of customers lost money they had prepaid for natural gas when Iroquois Energy, another energy marketer, ceased operations. ECONnergy’s representatives stress that customers only pay for energy they have already used, as determined by National Fuel, on whose bill the ECONnergy charges are listed.

In nearby Corning, ECONnergy has more satisfied customers than any other energy marketer, as it has in other utility areas such as Con Edison, Niagara-Mohawk and Orange & Rockland. With that kind of record, rising to the top in NFG should be a snap.

About ECONnergy Energy Company, Inc.

Based in Rockland County, NY, ECONnergy is a energy service company providing electric and natural gas supply to residential and business customers throughout the Northeast. ECONnergy has grown rapidly since its founding in 1997, and today serves over 150,000 customers. A privately-held company supplying energy for over four years, ECONnergy seeks to capitalize on the opportunities created by the ongoing deregulation of the utility industry in the United States.

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