Comcast may add electricity to bundle of services

Posted: January 24, 2014

Call it the Grand Slam.

Comcast may soon provide customers with retail electricity supply, along with its "Triple Play" bundle of cable, Internet, and phone service.

Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission Chairman Robert F. Powelson said Wednesday that the Philadelphia cable giant was working with a third-party supplier to include retail electricity in its bundle of services this year.

Powelson disclosed the Comcast venture during public remarks after the release of a report that evaluates the nation's competitive retail energy markets. Pennsylvania ranks second among states, behind Texas, in the Annual Baseline Assessment of Choice in Canada and the United States (ABACCUS).

Powelson did not name the supplier with which Comcast is collaborating. NRG Energy spokesman Dave Knox acknowledged that his company was "working with Comcast on a new initiative." NRG's involvement was first reported by EnergyChoiceMatters.com.

NRG, with headquarters in Princeton, owns Reliant Energy, a large retail supplier in Texas, and Energy Plus, a retail supplier in Philadelphia that specializes in bundling electrical supply with affinity programs that reward customers with cash and airline miles.

Comcast, which does not own a licensed electrical supplier in Pennsylvania, declined comment through a spokeswoman.

About 39 percent - 2.2 million - of Pennsylvania electricity customers have switched from incumbent utilities to competitive suppliers, mostly for discounted rates.

The architects of Pennsylvania's retail electricity markets anticipate that over time suppliers will offer more innovative products that might include services such as energy efficiency, home security, renewable power, and rates that vary by the hour.


amaykuth@phillynews.com

215-854-2947 @maykuth

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