EGD's vision is to become North America's leading energy distribution company. To achieve this vision, EGD has outlined the following strategic objectives:
- achieve top decile safety performance;
- enhance operational and financial governance effectiveness;
- deliver shareholder value;
- maintain a healthy and productive work environment; and
- enhance customer and stakeholder relationships.
One of EGD's major strategic initiatives is to continue to enhance the effectiveness of the business operations under IR, including rationalizing capital investment and increasing productivity. In addition, EGD will seek new growth opportunities, including growth in its core natural gas distribution business, investment in new infrastructure for power generation and fuel switching, development and delivery of energy efficiency programs and billing services for third parties, as well as the development of new natural gas storage space.
Another major strategic initiative is enhancing customer growth. EGD added over 41,000 new customers during the year ended December 31, 2008 (over 43,000 in the year ended December 31, 2007). In addition to traditional gas distribution growth expected, new earnings growth opportunities include investment in new infrastructure for power generation, fuel switching, implementation of turboexpanders on the natural gas distribution system, development and delivery of energy efficiency programs and billing services for third parties, as well as development of new natural gas storage space.
The Company provides storage services to wholesale storage market participants. In 2008, the Company provided approximately 3 million gigajoules of high deliverability storage capacity to these customers. Management continues to monitor the storage market and expects to develop new storage capacity when it is economically appropriate.
Customer Care and Customer Information System
In April 2007, EGD entered into new five-year customer care services contracts with third-party service providers for meter reading, billing, billing administration, call handling and collections. The total cost of the contracts is approximately $274 million over the five-year term. EGD is also working towards implementing a new Customer Information System, which will replace the legacy system by July 2009 and at an estimated cost of $119 million, in order to meet regulatory requirements and to meet the need for a more robust and technologically up-to-date system.
The OEB has approved a six-year rate recovery arrangement for customer care services and a 10 year recovery of the $119 million to be invested in the new CIS.
Gas Distribution and Services - Number of Active Customers (thousands)
EGD added over 41,000 customers in 2008 (over 43,000 in 2007).