Want a cheaper electric bill? Stellar Energy Solutions gets electric companies to compete for their clients’ business, resulting in low, competitive pricing.
By: Stephanie Kusy
Photos by: Paul Marshall
Tim Clark sure loves his cowboy boots. Unless work demands formal attire, this entrepreneur prefers them with just about anything. Today, he’s sporting a pair of ostrich boots with casual khakis and a button-down. He quickly mentions that his favorite, however, is a pair of alligator boots his wife, Keila, bought him for his birthday.
At just 33, Clark has quite a bit to celebrate. His company, Stellar Energy Solutions, dominates South Texas as an experienced electricity broker. A small staff of six employees manages around 1,000 commercial and residential clients. This didn’t happen overnight for Clark and his team, though. He hardly knew anything about the energy industry until 2007.
After a short stint in the oilfield (he was laid off), Clark took a job with Reliant Energy working as a door-to-door salesman. Not knowing much about the topic, he dedicated himself and became a student of the industry. He quickly gained clients by building trust and once was audited for having too many sales.
“The difference between me and everyone else was that I was up at 6 a.m., I was out the door by 7 a.m. and I was knocking on my first door at 8 a.m.,” he says. “They’d be unlocking the door to get in, and I’d be right there waiting for them. And then I’d work until 7 or 8 p.m.”
In 2010, he decided to branch out on his own and start Stellar Energy Solutions. The concept is simple: They use industry resources and experience to analyze a company’s electric usage. Then they shop multiple electricity providers to deliver a customized comprehensive quote. Unlike typical contracts, staff can negotiate lower rates for clients by renewing a contract earlier when energy prices are down. Nearly 85 percent of energy in Texas is derived from natural gas, so the market plays a crucial role in the cost of electricity.
“If you sign up in June, your contract will expire in June. What happens that month? It heats up. It’s hot outside; the AC units go up. All this power starts getting used in Texas, and with that comes higher electricity rates. So the thought would be if my contract expires in June, why not renew in December or January when it’s cooler and usage and volume is down? That’s what we try to pinpoint for customers. Pull the trigger here, and we’ll save you money there.”
The Stellar Energy Solutions staff members pride themselves on being proactive with their customers’ accounts. Clark says since Texas deregulated the electricity market in 2002, customers show no loyalty to providers, often switching companies in search of a better rate. His service costs the customer nothing, and it is great for those who don’t know much about the energy process and find the fine print confusing and time consuming. Clark and his staff cut through the red tape and break down their clients’ bills down to the penny, leaving them confident they made a well-informed decision.
Clark says his goal is to have a customer for life. “If at any point I can benefit you by lowering your rate, I’m going to lower it whether I profit from it or not. If I can keep you on the books, that’s profit for me.”
Brokers offer special options such as “Future Price Locking” a new agreement up to one year if a client is currently in a contract. This will allow customers to take advantage of potentially lower prices now, without canceling their existing contractual obligations. Many customers also like to take advantage of their “Next Meter-Read” option, which allows clients to switch over on their next scheduled meter read. There are no hidden costs, credit checks or fees required. The company currently ranks No. 7 in sales nationally, though they only compete for business in Texas and Ohio.
A self-proclaimed country boy, Clark grew up in rural Collinsville, Okla., with blue-collar roots. He has the Navy to thank for becoming a Corpus Christi resident, serving four years before making the Coastal Bend home. His experience laid the groundwork for the businessman he would later become.
“I would not be where I’m at today if I had not joined the military,” he says. “The discipline, dedication, loyalty, work ethic, all of that – you take that with you. I think that really propelled me.”
These days, Clark lives for the three Fs: faith, family and flyboarding. This thrill seeker became a flyboarding fanatic back in 2012. In this relatively new water sport, a rider stands on a board, connected by a long hose hooked to the back of a jet ski. Water is forced under pressure to a pair of boots with jet nozzles underneath, which thrusts riders in the air up to 50 feet. “It’s a great hobby to have. I encourage anybody and everybody to do it. It’s amazing,” he says with excitement. “Keila, my wife, has even done it!”
The couple married last August and welcomed their first child together, Raymond Christian, on June 6. Clark also has another son: Caleb, 12. They plan to build a home far on the south side of town on a plot of land so the boys can grow up hunting and fishing just like their father.
Clark and his family attend Yorktown Baptist Church, where he is involved in a mentoring program with other pastors. He embodies the phrase, “It’s better to give than to receive,” and he truly enjoys helping others. “Wealth is not the most important to me, but success is – whether it is being a husband, being a father, being a business owner.”
The folks at Stellar Energy Solutions seek success both personally and professionally. When it comes to electricity, they will find the most cost-effective solutions custom tailored to their customers’ business needs. This will allow their clients to free up time and money to work on their own definition of success.
Call Stellar Energy Solutions at 361-884-8973 for a comprehensive energy quote, or visit their website at www.stellarnrgsolutions.com.
Personal Photos Courtesy of Tim Clark