THE Jamaica Public Service (JPS) and appliance giants Appliance Traders Limited (ATL) have partnered to provide energy-saving products and services to customers.

The partnership, which was sealed in a Memorandum of Understanding yesterday, will see ATL extending its distribution of alternative and energy-efficient products through the JPS’s eStore.

ATL Group CEO and Deputy Chairman Adam Stewart presents President and CEO of the JPS Kelly Tomblin with a bag of goodies at the signing ceremony yesterday. (PHOTO: ASTON SPAULDING)

JPS customers will also benefit from a wider range of cost-cutting products as well as technical and consultative services through ATL’s Energy Solutions arm.

“I think it demonstrates a genuine intent by JPS to want to show Jamaicans how to reduce their energy bill,” group CEO Adam Stewart said, describing the move as “uncharacteristic” of a power company.

The leadership of this company (JPS) has made it clear that they want their consumers’ bills to go down, Stewart reasoned, noting the similarities in both companies mandate to promote energy conservation and efficiency.

For JPS chief executive officer, Kelly Tomblin, “this is an example of two companies coming together and saying we can provide help and not in three years, but today.”

She said though the planned construction of the 360 megawatt (MV) plant will aid the reduction of the nation’s energy woes, “educating and empowering customers to responsibly manage their energy use today will go a far way to solving the country’s energy challenges.

“We can understand the insanity of a company who wants to sell products to its clients that will ultimately drive down our sales, and people ask me if I’m crazy,” the JPS head said.

She noted, however, that her 25 years in the energy sector had inspired her conclusion that “if we do the right thing, if we train people the right way, economic development happens (and) the world grows.”

While noting the susceptibility of the JPS to shifts in the economy, Tomblin said the company hoped the partnership would be viewed as “our next step in redefining who we want to be in our hearts and in our delivery”.

ATL made its expansion into the alternative energy business with the launch of its Energy Solutions store earlier this year.

“Record energy prices in Jamaica as well as in the international marketplace have heightened the need for sustainable alternatives,” ATL’s energy and engineering manager, Paul Grey said.

An expansion into the energy business was therefore a “natural progression” for the company, Grey reckoned.

“We are at a transformational period in the Jamaican energy sector that requires us to either heavily curb our existing consumption patterns or look to alternative sources of power,” he suggested.

For Stewart, “What we find is that the average consumer doesn’t understand the appliances in their homes that consume the most power.

“So what we find lacking is the key words — energy education,” which he said, the partnership hopes to bring.

“We are going to have the customer at our forefront and we are going to partner with a giant like ATL that can help us deliver like we’ve never delivered before,” Tomblin said.

The signing ceremony was held yesterday at the JPS’s Knutsford Boulevard head office.