SOURCE: SDG & E; SoCalGas

SDG & E; SoCalGas

SDG & E; SoCalGas

March 09, 2010 17:37 ET

Southern California Gas Co., SDG&E Reach New Milestone in Diversity Spending

SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwire - March 9, 2010) -  Southern California Gas Co. (The Gas Company) and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) have reached a new milestone in spending with diverse business enterprises -- businesses owned by minorities, women and service-disabled veterans -- according to a year-end report recently released by the utilities. In 2009, The Gas Company and SDG&E made 31 percent of their purchases from diverse businesses -- a 19-percent increase over the prior year.

"We are proud of this significant accomplishment in our ongoing program to develop a diverse employee and supplier base," said Debra L. Reed, president and chief executive officer of SDG&E and The Gas Company. "In 2009, we purchased $440 million in goods and services from diverse suppliers, exceeding our goals for the year."

Renewable Energy Systems, a fast-growing service-disabled veteran business, signed more than $2 million in large contracts with The Gas Company and SDG&E last year to develop commercial-scale, solar-installation projects.

 "Working with The Gas Company and SDG&E to develop renewable energy projects in the community has been a rewarding experience," said Rick Fowler, president of Renewable Energy Systems. "We are thankful for the utilities support of service-disabled-veteran businesses and for providing us the opportunity to grow and compete in the marketplace. The Gas Company and SDG&E's supplier diversity program is a model for others to follow." 

Together, SDG&E and The Gas Company spent a total of $440 million on purchases with businesses owned by women, minorities and service-disabled veterans in 2009, substantially exceeding the 21.5-percent benchmark set by the California Public Utilities Commission.

The Gas Company and SDG&E have focused on the future success of diverse suppliers by promoting sustainability and green business efforts, as well as helping these businesses prepare to enter the marketplace with training and technical assistance programs.

In 2008, The Gas Company and SDG&E significantly expanded their technical assistance and supplier-development programs by partnering with local universities to offer courses to build business acumen. These courses include financial management, management development, operations and strategic planning. The utility also launched a successful in-house workshop for suppliers on access to capital resources. The programs include one-on-one coaching and refresher courses to help increase business expertise.

Over the past 15 years, SDG&E and The Gas Company have spent more than $6 billion with diverse suppliers.

The Gas Company is the nation's largest natural gas distribution utility, providing safe and reliable energy to 20.5 million consumers through 5.7 million meters. SDG&E is a regulated public utility that provides safe and reliable energy service to 3.4 million consumers through 1.4 million electric meters and 840,000 natural gas meters in San Diego and southern Orange counties. 

The Gas Company and SDG&E are subsidiaries of Sempra Energy. Sempra Energy, based in San Diego, is a Fortune 500 energy services holding company with 2009 revenues of more than $8 billion. The Sempra Energy companies' 13,800 employees serve more than 29 million consumers worldwide.

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