Avista Corp was incorporated in the state of Washington in 1889. It is an energy company, which is engaged in the generation, transmission and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. It operates in two business segments: Avista Utilities and Ecova. Avista Utilities is an operating division of the Company, that comprises its regulated utility operations. Avista Utilities generates, transmits and distributes electricity and distributes natural gas. Retail electric and natural gas customers include residential, commercial and industrial classifications. The Company is also engaged in wholesale purchases and sales of electricity and natural gas as an integral part of energy resource management and its load-serving obligation. Ecova is an indirect subsidiary of the Company, that provides energy efficiency and cost management programs and services for multi-site customers and utilities throughout North America. Ecova's primary product lines include expense management services for utility and telecom needs as well as strategic energy management and efficiency services that include procurement, conservation, performance reporting, financial planning and energy efficiency program management for commercial enterprises and utilities. Ecova's invoice processing, auditing and payment services, coupled with energy procurement, comprehensive reporting and analysis, provide the critical data clients need to balance the financial, social and environmental aspects of doing business. As part of the expense management services, Ecova analyzes and audits invoices, then presents consolidated bills on-line, and processes payments. Information gathered from invoices, providers and other customer-specific data allows Ecova to provide its clients with in-depth analytical support, real-time reporting and consulting services. Ecova also provides comprehensive energy efficiency program management services to utilities across North America. As part of these management services, Ecova helps utilities develop and execute energy efficiency programs with a complete turn-key solution. The Company's other businesses include a sheet metal fabrication business, emerging technology venture fund investments and commercial real estate investments, as well as Spokane Energy, LLC. In retail markets, it competes with various rural electric cooperatives and public utility districts in and adjacent to its service territories in the provision of service to new electric customers. It is subject to state regulation in Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon. The Company is subject to environmental regulation by federal, state and local authorities.