CenterPoint EnergyElectric Transmission and Distribution
CenterPoint Energy selects ABB for Intelligent Grid automation deployment
Phase 1 of intelligent grid to improve power reliability and restoration in central Houston

Houston - November 17, 2010 - CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric, LLC, a subsidiary of CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE:CNP), announced today that it has selected ABB, a leading power and automation technology company, for the electric company’s intelligent grid Advanced Distribution Management System (ADMS). Using ABB’s Network Manager™, the ADMS will process data from power line sensors and smart electric meters to identify the location of power outages and remotely control intelligent grid switching devices to shorten the duration of power outages.  Phase 1 is expected to be completed in 2013 and will cover more than half a million Houstonians in central Houston and along the Houston Ship Channel.

“Once deployed, this system will give us greater insight into the health of our electric infrastructure and eventually create a ‘self-healing’ grid,” said Kenny Mercado, division senior vice president for CenterPoint Energy’s Regulated Operations Technology. “With this technology, we will be able to automatically reroute power around many outage locations to help us get the lights on sooner. We selected ABB for our smart grid network after a rigorous review of several major vendors, and we are pleased to be installing an advanced system from a leader in power and automation technology.”

Network Manager is an operations management system designed to provide advanced network modeling and management, integrated switching and tagging, trouble call and outage management, crew management, and historical archiving and reporting. Network Manager offers integrated advanced applications, such as fault location, unbalanced load flow and simulation modes, as well as interfaces to other information systems that permit organizations to leverage time-critical data across the enterprise. Network Manager is part of a suite of software offered by Ventyx, which was acquired by ABB earlier this year.

“We are very excited to be working with CenterPoint Energy,” said Salim Khan, head of Network Management for ABB in North America and based in Sugar Land, TX. “CenterPoint Energy is a true industry leader and we believe ADMS will be a showcase of the promise of smart grid technology that will benefit the entire industry.”

Since March 2009, CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric has installed more than 700,000 smart electric meters along with supporting communications infrastructure and computing systems. Recently, the company began installing intelligent grid switching devices on power lines across central Houston and plans to eventually extend its self-healing intelligent grid throughout its 5,000-square-mile electric service territory in greater Houston in subsequent phases.

A portion of the funding for deploying smart meters and the ADMS is provided through a U.S. Department of Energy Smart Grid Investment Grant. CenterPoint Houston Electric is using $150 million of the grant to accelerate completion of the installation of more than 2 million smart electric meters across Houston from 2014 to mid 2012. The remaining $50 million is being used for phase 1 of the intelligent grid deployment.

For the latest information on the CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric’s smart meter and intelligent grid programs, visit

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution, competitive natural gas sales and services, interstate pipelines, and field services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Assets total more than $19 billion. With about 8,800 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 135 years. For more information, visit the Web site at

ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 117,000 people. The company's North American corporate operations, headquartered in Cary, North Carolina, employ about 12,000 people in 20 manufacturing and other major facilities.

This news release includes forward-looking statements. Actual events and results may differ materially from those projected. The statements in this news release regarding future events and other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Factors that could affect actual results include the financial performance of CenterPoint Energy, the timing and impact of future regulatory decisions, and other factors discussed in CenterPoint Energy's Form 10-K for the period ended Dec. 31, 2009, and Form 10-Qs for the periods ended March 31, June 30, and September 30, 2010, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Smart Meters

CNP awarded $200 million DOE grant