NORWALK, Conn. – A new electricity and natural gas company has opened for business on Washington Street in Norwalk.
Abest Power & Gas supplies energy for residential and commercial customers. Founder Frank Rosa and COO Trevor Herbest both have experience in the energy business and believe that previous work has already started to pay off in their new venture.
“One of the key aspects to our success is that we have worked backwards,” says Herbest. “We put in over six months of diligence, instead of going out and enrolling a bunch of customers with no clear management plan, and then reacting.”
Connecticut has grown one of the largest markets for energy since the state deregulated its electricity industry in 1998. About 41.8 percent of the state’s customers use an independent supplier for their electricity rather than the producing utility, according to a 2011 study by the Office of Legislative Research.
Those customers account for approximately two-thirds of the state’s energy use. Connecticut is second only to Texas in percentage of uses who switched, according to the study.
Even with the high turnover, Connecticut’s energy prices are still higher than national averages for both regulated and deregulated states. So Rosa and Herbest have partnered with a nationwide corporation to start their business, which believe bring their prices lower than other startups “who have to secure financing through growth and expensive money which is then passed down to the consumer,” Herbest says.
Abest is partnered with Corporate Resource Services, a national corporation with more than 200 offices in 42 states.
“Even though we are a subsidiary of CRS headquartered in Manhattan, we chose to set up operations in Norwalk in order to come back to Connecticut and help finish what we started here,” Herbest says.
For more information, visit the Abest Power & Gas website.
CORRECTION: This story has been changed to correct errors regarding Abest's relationship with Corporate Resource Services.