More customers are choosing their energy supplier and saving money with a lower rate than versus any other time in the history of competitive electric and natural gas markets, industry experts agreed during the 22nd annual Executive Forum held last week in San Antonio by KEMA, Inc., an industry consultant.

Entitled "Retail Resurgence," the conference brought together retail energy providers, wholesale suppliers, vendors, brokers, consultants, and, most importantly, end use customers, to discuss the status of the industry.

The past year has seen more and more customers receive new options to lower their energy bills by shopping for a new energy supplier.  Long a success in Texas, competition is giving customers the power to save money in places like Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois, Connecticut, and Maryland -- just to name a few.

Now that customers can vote with their feet -- and choose a new energy provider whenever they are dissatisfied with price, service, or anything else -- competing energy suppliers must improve and innovate to actively win over customers with their best offers, or be left behind.  Gone are the days when customers were locked into a monopoly utility electric provider that could raise rates, and ignore customer service, without penalty.

Federico Peña, former Secretary of both the U.S Department of Energy and U.S. Department of Transportation, put it best when addressing KEMA attendees by saying, "because new entrants are allowed to challenge the market share of existing participants, this economic rivalry requires all to innovate to retain customers."

Highlighting the Texas electric market as a leader, Peña noted that with the transition to a fully competitive market, "Texas customers now have far more choices in electricity offers than consumers in any other U.S. market."  Customers in other states are just now starting to get the same choices, and are emphatically voting to save money by switching to a new energy supplier offering lower rates.