About Us - Plains Power Ltd

Hello! We’re the Summerfield’s, owners and operators of Mid Canterbury’s very own power company.

It’s not every day someone in your neighbourhood sets up a power company and it’s certainly a good conversation starter when someone asks us what we do! 

Pete was born and bred in the Ashburton community, growing up here, going to school, playing various sports and of course socializing. An electrician by trade, Plains Power was Pete’s brain child. Having done a stint in Western Australia, amerced in the solar industry, coming back to Ashburton to start up an electrical business (Auric Electrical) Pete could see changes happening within the industry and got to thinking about we could get involved. Fast forward four years later and here we are! 

Emma was raised on a sheep and beef farm in North Canterbury. Having gone to school in Christchurch, studied at Lincoln University and completing the big OE, settled back to New Zealand to kick off a career as a banker. Not sure where this would take her, after various roles, ended up in Ashburton as a rural manager. After 13 years in the banking industry and having their first child, Frankie, in February 2017, change was on the horizon! Now the owner and operator of a power company and loving the challenge! Becoming involved in the industry has been a real eye opener as to what goes on ‘behind the scenes’ and how competitive the market is. The most enjoyable part is dealing with people, our customers, and leaving all the technical stuff to Pete!


Given electricity is bought and sold on the same market by all the companies, including us, we were exactly the same as the big guys in that respect. So how were we going to differentiate ourselves from the big players?

We saw a massive gap in the market for people that wanted to deal locally, knowing they can pick up the phone and talk directly to us and not be put on hold or passed around a call centre, and to know they are getting a fair deal, taking comfort they are paying the same as their neighbour and not being ‘ripped off’ or subsidising ‘win back’ pricing.

We knew we had to be competitive with our pricing, which is a real strength of our business as we operate with low overheads and are focused on delivering an outstanding service to the market. We are not wanting to aggressively grow our share across the country which lets us focus on the people we deal with in the Mid Canterbury community and get behind local organisations.

The industry can sometimes be perceived as ‘boring and stale’, but we get quite excited about the opportunity this provides us. The industry is beginning to change and being small and nimble means we can implement exciting new innovations and initiatives. These types of offerings are unique to our business and we want to help Mid Canterbury customers maximise their earning/saving potential.

Having both worked outside of Mid Canterbury, across the country and around the world, we still get blown away with the loyalty the community shows in supporting locally owned and operated business. We’re here to make sure that loyalty is recognised and rewarded and we’re proud to be growing our business here.


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