Japan cable TV giant enters electricity biz

Jupiter Telecommunications (JCOM) will sell power to condominium residents starting from December, and will offer a discount of up to 10 percent if customers also sign up for its broadcasting services.

Cable television company Jupiter Telecommunications Company (JCOM) will start providing condominium residents with electricity from December, which it says will be up to 10 percent cheaper than those of regular power companies.

By buying a large amount of electricity in bulk, prices will be around 7 percent cheaper than those of regular power companies, and around 10 percent cheaper if customers also sign up for broadcasting services, said JCOM in a report Wednesday by local daily The Mainichi.

It plans to start in Suginami Ward, Tokyo, and eventually expand the service to the 14 prefectures where it offers cable television. The company will also handle installation and maintenance of equipment like transformers and breakers.

The Mainichi noted a similar service has been offered by NTT Facilities, part of the NTT Group, since March 2006. NTT Facilities claimed its electricity prices were 5 percent cheaper than those of power companies.

A Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry representative told the newspaper: "After the Great East Japan Earthquake , more corporations have begun self-production of electricity, and there is more power [that be bought] from these companies today. These companies have built up knowledge in transactions with heavy power users, and the conditions should be set for expanding the business."

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