Consumers want one-stop shopping - everything in one package, and the telephone, too.
The role of the local electric utility could take on a much larger proportion if residential...
Gas restructuring didn't end with Order 636, it just outran the regulators. Now the rules come from the downstream dealmakers.
the nomination deadline could actually have the opposite of its intended effect and result in a de facto wider accepted window of nominations through late and real-time nominations.
Historically, pipeline prices have been tariff based. The FERC's recent statement on alternative rates 2 now gives pipelines greater freedom to pursue nontraditional pricing structures. Additionally, as more long-term contracts expire and capacity turnbacks increase, the FERC will allow pipelines to depart from the SFV rate structure for unsubscribed capacity. 3 Convergence of gas and electric markets will also foster new deals with nontraditional pricing. Marketers increasingly will demand nontraditional capacity deals that mirror the financial instruments they use (em such as capacity prices tied to basis differentials between energy hubs. The challenge to pipelines will lie in developing processes and systems that can accommodate flexible prices and track daily fluctuating prices through invoicing.
Services, like prices, have remained tied to tariffs and have proved slow to change. After a decade of intense cost-cutting and reengineering, pipelines will find the richest net-income increases not in cost reduction but in maximizing revenue through new services. The changes that took place in the telecommunications industry after deregulation revealed a heightened focus on new services. As AT&T lost its monopoly, new products and services emerged quickly. Marketing became more aggressive than before. Call waiting and caller ID serve as but two examples. In addition, new types of services evolved to meet the needs of specialized groups of customers. Consider the numerous calling plans based on the usage of various customer groups.
As products like Williams's Streamline and Enersoft's Channel 4 on the commodity side, and TransCapacity's T/Nominator on the capacity side, increase in sophistication, users farther and farther downstream will be able to make their own deals. The trip downstream yields steadily decreasing volumes, hence decreasing economic motivation on the part of pipeline customers to fully understand the gas flow process. A
residential user ordering gas via his PC would be the extreme example. Pipelines hoping to serve these new, less-sophisticated shippers must consider the likely increase in customer-service costs per revenue dollar that they will incur if they maintain a relatively generic level of customer service for all shippers.