11/14/2018 9:53:21 AM | BEC | 0 comments

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BEC CEO, Bill Hetherington Speaks at 2018 Key Accounts Meeting

At Bandera Electric Cooperative (BEC), every member and every account is important to us. You are the reason we are here and why we work to provide the best possible service every day of the year.

Here at BEC we have a group made up of the largest energy users we supply power to. These are industrial accounts, governmental entities, educational institutions and other major players from throughout our service area. We call this group our Key Accounts.

On November 14, 2018, BEC hosted a gathering for representatives from those key accounts in Boerne, Texas. This provided the forum for BEC to say “Thank You” for allowing us to be a partner. It was also an opportunity to inform the group of where we are, and where we are heading.

POWER

BEC Chief Executive Officer, Bill Hetherington, was pleased to be able to inform the key account holders that our numbers continue to grow. Currently we serve almost 27,000 members with 37,000 meters. Energy sales are up 8% and member growth is up 5%. Members can look forward to a major announcement regarding our Apolloware™ energy analytics software in 2019.

Supported efforts like BEC's Operation Round Up and Selectricity™ prove BEC doesn’t just strive to provide the best in service, we’re also looking for ways to help those less fortunate afford those services.

SOLAR

BEC saw tremendous growth from our solar efforts this past year. In 2018, the BEC Solar team was responsible for an impressive $1.5 million dollars in sales. BEC Solar is also second in the nation in sales of Tesla energy storage products.

Look for continued expansion from the BEC Solar team in 2019. Through solar system sales and Tesla products, the group expects to enter Bexar County/San Antonio in 2019. The foundation laid by BEC Solar will pave the way for the group to equal or surpass the record sales numbers they achieved in 2018.

FIBER

On the internet front, this year BEC Fiber has strung and buried 225 miles of fiber optic line. We are currently serving 2,350 internet customers, which translates into BEC being 31% over its initial projection of customers. Revenues generated have BEC Fiber “Cash Flow” positive after only eighteen months of operation.

In 2019, our goal is for continued expansion of our broadband service by 40%. And, if you don’t mind us “tooting our own horn,” BEC Fiber was voted 2018 “Best of the Best” Internet Provider by Boerne Star readers.

Our commitment to make new technologies available to our members, and our continual search for alternative and clean renewable energy options prove that we’ve come a long way since 1938. Our drive to be the best in reliability, response and customer service prove that some things will never change.

11/9/2018 8:50:38 AM | BEC | 0 comments
Since 2000, the average cable bill has gone from $60 to $105. That’s a 74% increase over the course of 18 years. While cable bills continue to rise at an average of 5% annually, our pay checks do not.

Thanks to high-speed internet, streaming video services and local television stations broadcasting in High Definition (HDTV), viewers finally have an option. People can choose to either “stay connected” (to cable or Satellite) or they can “Cut the Cord" or “Drop the Dish”.

To many Americans this is a “No Brainer.”  A new report by market analyst TDG Research estimates that by 2030, as many as 40% of Americans will have opted to “Cut the Cord.”

Before you dive in head first, there are two major factors to consider. First, do you have a reliable internet service provider delivering the speeds needed to stream video online? Second, how will you receive local programming from stations like WOAI, KENS, KSAT, KABB or one of the many other digital channels that come from San Antonio?

To those in the Hill Country who’ve already done your homework and will soon sharpen those scissors to join the millions who have already “Cut the Cord,” BEC says: “Welcome to the family!”  BEC Fiber offers fast internet connections throughout parts of its service area and is continually expanding to serve more members with speeds that range from 50 Mbps up to a lightning fast 1,000 Mbps (1 Gbps)!

So you’ve decided to “Cut the Cord.” You’ve got reliable internet and already subscribe to one (or more) of the many streaming video services like Netflix, HULU, Sling etc… An important question is how are you going to receive your local programming?

Once again you have options. You can choose to install an outdoor antenna on your home or property. The benefit is after the initial cost, you’ll be able to watch up to 25 stations from San Antonio in digital HD completely free of charge. After speaking with several residents throughout our service area who have chosen this option, what we’ve learned is that your ability to receive a strong “over the air” signal with an outdoor antenna, all depends on where you live. 

Some are able to receive a strong signal with just a $20 dollar window antenna, others have invested significantly more to get the same signal. If this is an option you’re considering, it may require a little work but it can be done. It all depends on where you live, how patient you are and sometimes how much you’re willing to spend.

If that does not sound like your kind of option, you can choose to receive your local channels through one of the online streaming services that offer them as part of their package. In our area, DirecTV NOW and YouTube-TV are two of the more popular choices. Playstation Vue is the newest entry into this type of streaming and is starting to see more usage in our area.

There is a cost for these services (roughly $40 dollars per month). With that monthly fee (that comes without a contract) you’ll receive all the local channels and as many as 57 additional channels ranging from AMC to USA, and include many popular sports stations as well.

So there you have it, the good the bad, the simple the not-so-simple. Whichever way you decide to go, the choice is yours! And when you think about it, isn’t that why you’d “Cut the Cord” in the first place?