AUCKLAND, New Zealand, Dec. 19, 2000 (PRNewswire) —TrustPower, one of New Zealand’s largest power companies, has teamed with an online billing software company to offer value-added cell phone service to customers.

TrustPower’s promotion offers low-cost, pre-paid cell phones to its 230,000 customers.

TrustPower is working with Online Telecommunications, a division of Brocker Technology Group, to bring this offer to market. Brocker Online’s proprietary billing software enables the phone sale and subsequent recharges to be charged directly to TrustPower customers’ electric bills.

Brocker Online Telecommunications developed the software that allows customers to recharge cell phones in real time. When a customer calls the toll free number, the software system identifies the calling number and asks for a PIN.

The system verifies the PIN, checks the customer’s credit history and credit limit, and allows the customer to recharge up to that limit. The system then reads out a transaction number for the customer’s records. The whole transaction takes less than 60 seconds. Data from the transaction is then sent to TrustPower for billing.

Brocker Online purchases excess cellular airtime at a discount from Telecom New Zealand, and resells it. After adding its own margin Brocker is still able give TrustPower customers a lower airtime rate than they could get directly from Telecom.

“We believe that leadership and innovation are essential in our business,” said TrustPower National Sales Manager, Chris O’Hara, “so we are continually seeking to develop new initiatives like this one, that we can take to our customers to increase the value to them of their relationship with TrustPower.”

“Obviously there are many other potential uses for this billing solution,” said Brocker CEO, Michael Ridgway. “Not only utility companies, but any business with a large customer base whom they bill regularly can make use of this innovative way to add value to their customer relationships. It enables them to make many kinds of special offers available to customers, such as this cell phone package, in a way that is convenient for their customers and the business.”

About TrustPower
TrustPower ( is a New Zealand power supply company. More than 60% New Zealand owned, TrustPower started business in 1925 as the Tauranga Electric Power Board. The company now has regional offices in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch and supplies power to more than 230,000 homes and businesses throughout the country.

TrustPower is also a significant generator of power, operating 34 power stations, including the largest wind farm in the Southern Hemisphere.

About Brocker Technology Group Ltd.
Brocker Technology Group Ltd. ( is a global provider of business-to-business communications focusing on application development, consulting services, online services, and vendor services (Brocker’s original technology distribution and service business).

Brocker’s e-communications products, collectively called EC Suite (Enterprise Communication Suite), include Supercession (e-business transaction processing software), Bloodhound (one-number communication & unified messaging software) and Powerphone (caller ID software that also displays all of the client’s transaction history).

Brocker has established partnering agreements with KPMG and PeopleSoft. Brocker’s Supercession is designed to integrate with PeopleSoft’s non-internet based ERP software.