SOURCE: The Structure Group

November 21, 2005 10:25 ET

The Structure Group's nMarket™ Product Successfully Supports Calpine Merchant Services Company During Recent SPP Market Connectivity Testing

HOUSTON, TX -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 21, 2005 -- The Structure Group announces that its nMarket software platform successfully supported Calpine Corporation's (NYSE: CPN) energy services subsidiary, Calpine Merchant Services Company (CMSC), through the Southwest Power Pool's (SPP) recent Participant Readiness Testing.

The SPP-led connectivity testing provided market participants the opportunity to test their ability to submit and query Resource Plans, Ancillary Service Plans, Energy Imbalance Service Offer Curves and SPP notifications in a controlled and scripted environment before proceeding with further market trials. During the testing, CMSC verified it could successfully operate within the parameters handed down by the SPP.

"To better serve our customers and enhance the performance of our 1,600-megawatt power system in SPP, we knew we needed a platform that would provide immediate communication with the market operator," Scott Grooms, director, gas and power logistics, said. "nMarket and Structure already meet our needs in six other markets, and this was an important factor in our decision. CMSC's vision is to be the premier provider of energy services in the industry. Adding SPP to our capabilities enhances our coast-to-coast scope and scale."

The SPP Energy Imbalance Service (EIS) market will include an imbalance market for real-time energy. Locational imbalance pricing (LIP) will be utilized to ensure that the lowest cost assets offered into the SPP EIS market are dispatched. The EIS market will be settled hourly.

Structure's nMarket software platform provides bid-to-bill, straight-through processing for companies participating in predominantly physical markets. The product will assist CMSC by performing all data communication to and from the market operator (submits, notifications, queries), warehousing real-time market decision support information (clearing prices, volumes/forecasts, meter reads, billing determinant information) and allowing CMSC to bid directly into the various markets, perform shadow settlements and track disputes with SPP.

SPP Participant Readiness Testing was a success for Structure clients because Structure made early investments in attending market readiness, tariff and protocol meetings to translate the rules into nMarket in time for the first market tests, according to Structure principal Michael Cutler.

"Because CMSC already uses nMarket across six other markets, this was a consistent, attractive, low-risk solution that we were able to implement together quickly," Cutler said. "Structure's commitment across the North American ISO/RTO markets fits well with CMSC's coast-to-coast scope and scale." Since the SPP connectivity testing, CMSC recently implemented nMarket for the Ontario IESO market, bringing the total markets supported at CMSC to eight.

SPP is expected to administer several more phases of market trials throughout the year. Day-in-the-Life testing is currently scheduled for November and will include additional functionality and more complex business testing. The unscripted portion of market trials is anticipated in late February leading up to the final trials. Structure's nMarket product will fully support SPP's EIS market and the estimation and verification of settlements.

A third release of the product will be made available in support of Enhanced Day-in-the-Life testing scheduled for late January. Enhanced Day-in-the-Life will be the first test of SPP's upgraded systems along with the first test of Native Load Scheduling (NLS) and the settlements process.

The selection of the nMarket platform brings to three the number of installations in SPP, including the recently completed successful implementation at The Energy Authority. nMarket continues its dominance over competitors in the physical transaction space, providing market-leading bid-to-bill capabilities for effectively interacting with independent system operators and regional transmission organizations throughout North America. In less than six years, nMarket has gone from being an individual client solution for a unique market problem to the clear market leader in the ISO/RTO arena. With more than 100 installations to date, nMarket provides functionality for scheduling, bidding and settling more generation and load than all other competing commercial solutions combined. In addition, Structure is the only vendor that offers true multi-market coverage across every North American market.

About Calpine Merchant Services Company

Based in Houston, Texas, Calpine Merchant Services Company (CMSC) manages power and gas assets for a wide range of customers which, when combined, represents one of the largest unregulated energy portfolios in North America. As an energy management services provider, CMSC assists customers with commercial services such as trading and physical liquidation of power and gas assets, operational services including scheduling and settlements, and a variety of other customized energy management solutions. CMSC is a subsidiary of Calpine Corporation (NYSE: CPN), a major North American power company (www.calpine.com).

About The Structure Group

The Structure Group is a leading provider of energy trading business solutions and consulting services to market participants in North America and Europe. Established in 1998, Structure has experience working with organizations in all stages of the energy value chain. Structure introduced nMarket™ in 2000. The product assists energy organizations with the bidding, scheduling, dispatch and settlement of energy trades and ancillary services in regional power markets. Power marketers who participate in the California, ERCOT, Midwest, New England, New York, PJM and Ontario markets are currently using the product. For more information about The Structure Group, visit www.thestructuregroup.com or contact us directly at media@scgo.com.

Contact Information

  • CONTACT:
    Laurie Bollig
    The Structure Group
    Phone: 913.221.6923
    Email: Email Contact