CenterPoint Energy

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CenterPoint Energy
Type Public
Traded as NYSECNP
S&P 500 Component
Industry Utilities
Founded 1882
Headquarters CenterPoint Energy Tower
Houston, Texas, USA
Key people Scott M. Prochazka, CEO & President
Revenue

Increase$8.106 billion[1]

USD (2013)
Operating income

Increase$1 billion[1]

USD (2013)
Net income

Decrease$311 million[1]

USD (2013)
Employees

8,720[1]

(2013)
Website www.centerpointenergy.com
Centerpoint Energy Plaza, CenterPoint Energy headquarters in Downtown Houston

CenterPoint Energy is a Fortune 500 electric and natural gas utility serving several markets in the U.S. states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. It was formerly known as Reliant Energy (from which it is now separated), NorAm Energy, Houston Industries, and HL&P. The company is headquartered in the CenterPoint Energy Tower at 1111 Louisiana Street in Downtown Houston.[2][3] Some of its notable subscribers include Retail Electric Providers (REPs), such as Reliant Energy, Champion Energy, Dynowatt, Ambit Energy, Texas Power, Bounce Energy, MXenergy, Direct Energy, Stream Energy, First Texas Energy Corporation, Gexa Energy and Cirro Energy.

History[edit]

When the state of Texas deregulated the electricity market, the former Houston Lighting & Power (HL&P) was split into several companies.[4] In 2003 HL&P was split into Reliant Energy, Texas Genco, and CenterPoint Energy.[5]

Until December 15, 2004, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessors operated in its various markets under these names; they were used separately prior to Reliant Energy, and later in conjunction with the Reliant Energy and CenterPoint Energy names:

  • Minnegasco (Natural gas throughout parts of Minnesota)
  • Houston Lighting and Power (or HL&P) Houston-Galveston electric provider
  • Entex (Natural gas throughout South and East Texas, Southern Louisiana and Mississippi)
  • Arkla (Natural gas throughout Northern Louisiana,Northeast Texas,[6] Oklahoma, and Arkansas)

In late 2004, four private equity firms—the Texas Pacific Group, the Blackstone Group, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, and Hellman & Friedman—combined forces to purchase Texas Genco from Centerpoint. Later in 2006, Texas Genco was sold to NRG Energy of Princeton, N.J.

September 2008 power outage
A CenterPoint Energy facility in Downtown Houston.

Hurricane Ike caused great disruption of service in the Greater Houston Area, wiping out 2.1 million of CenterPoint Energy's 2.26 million clients' electricity. This was the largest power outage in the company's 130 year history, and the largest in the state's history.

Smart meter pilot program

In March 2009, the company’s five-year smart meter deployment began, delivering enhanced smart meter functionality to Retail Electric Providers (REPs). The company worked with the Department of Energy for a pilot program in Texas centered around energy consumption.[7] After working with 500-residential electricity customers in the Houston area, it was found that by using a smart meter, consumers cut down on energy use for the home.[7] The pilot program was funded in part by the $200 million it received from the federal stimulus act.[7]

CenterPoint Energy has been working with IBM. In 2013, IBM helped CenterPoint Energy develop the Customer Vision Platform. The Customer Vision Platform will give CenterPoint a 360-degree view of their 5 million metered customers, incorporating their gas, electric and home services customers. It’s going to give customers a range of choices around how they want to interact with CenterPoint while also providing a consistent experience across the board.[8]

Criticism[edit]

On December 16, 2005, CenterPoint Energy Inc. said it would restate its finances for 2004 and the first three quarters of 2005 to correct accounting errors that overstated revenue and natural gas expenses.[9]

In December 2011, the non-partisan organization Public Campaign criticized CenterPoint Energy for spending $2.65 million on lobbying and not paying any taxes during 2008-2010, instead getting $284 million in tax rebates, despite making a profit of $1.9 billion, and having an executive pay between $12 and $13 million for its top 5 executives.[10]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d http://investors.centerpointenergy.com/highlights.cfm
  2. ^ "Contact Information." CenterPoint Energy. Retrieved on January 14, 2009.
  3. ^ "CenterPoint Energy Tower." Berger Iron Works. Retrieved on January 14, 2009.
  4. ^ "Exelon bids for major Texas power producer NRG." Houston Chronicle. October 20, 2008. Retrieved on April 14, 2014. "The plants were originally part of the former Houston Lighting & Power, the integrated utility that served the Houston area until it was broken up into three separate companies as the state deregulated its power markets."
  5. ^ Fowler, Tom. "8 Houston power plants to be sold to NRG." Houston Chronicle. October 2, 2005. Retrieved on April 14, 2014.
  6. ^ http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=867002
  7. ^ a b c CNET. "Texans take a shine to in-home energy displays."
  8. ^ "IBM, CenterPoint Energy Launch Customer Vision Platform". 
  9. ^ "CenterPoint Energy to Restate Finances". 
  10. ^ Portero, Ashley. "30 Major U.S. Corporations Paid More to Lobby Congress Than Income Taxes, 2008-2010". International Business Times. Archived from the original on 26 December 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 

External links[edit]