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Digitisation Overhauls Energy Sector’s Operation


Start-ups and established utility companies collaborate to hasten the transformation for energy sector.

Dailycsr.com – 29 April 2019 – The entrepreneurs at the leading innovation hubs of the world are pioneering transformation in the power sector with the help of digital expertise, whereby accelerating the pace of change.
Start-ups have disrupted market structures for “retail, marketing, and transport”, while they are now closely collaborating with the “electricity utility companies”, while CLP is one such companies in the changing landscape of global energy market.
Since its beginning, CLP has been optimising on its performances besides boosting its “technical and operational capability”, as it invested in creating “a variety of cutting-edge digital tools and solutions from established world-class partners”.
Simultaneously, CLP has also partnered with “start-ups and universities” that excel in “artificial intelligence (AI), data analytics, and the Internet of Things” (IoT) in order to hasten the development of “smarter and cleaner energy services” in the Asia-pacific region which will cater to the domestic as well as the corporate crowd. In the words of the senior director, Innovation, Austin Bryan:
“Digitalisation is fundamentally overhauling the way the energy sector operates and the kinds of services that can be made available to customers. Partnering with start-up companies is one way for us to get access to software and data-science technologies”.
Last year, CLP partnered with “Free Electrons” programme which brings together start-ups an utility companies for discovering “novel solutions” and creating “new energy products and services”. While the legal counsel of CLP, Marissa Wong, who deals with the company’s participation with the programme stated:
“Getting the chance to speak openly and compare notes with leading international utilities on our respective innovation journeys, and being able to share and build on knowledge and capabilities is a vital and unique aspect of Free Electrons”.
Furthermore, she added:
“Through the programme, we were able to work with some of the world’s smartest and most dynamic innovators developing solutions to 21st century digital energy challenges. With our industry leadership across Asia Pacific, CLP is well-positioned to work in partnership with the best start-ups to create transformative new energy technologies and applications for individuals, businesses, cities, and Governments”.
“We are now trialling solutions from the programme’s start-ups across the Group. We are excited to be part of the success and development of these start-ups, and proud to be their partners in transforming the future of energy.”
Under the Free Electron programme, the asset management’s director at CLP Power Hong Kong, Cathen Ho has experience in working on “several pilot projects”, and Cathlen observed:
“Start-up companies are more agile and flexible in developing customised solutions. They usually have lower overheads and can offer solutions at a competitive cost. Some start-ups are specialists in AI and data analytics technologies, which can help CLP optimise asset management performance.”
The director of “Venture Investment and Strategy”, Lu Yeung explained CLP’s “three-pronged strategy” for investment:
“Typically, we consider the direct investment approach for companies with proven technologies and business models”.
“CLP invests in venture capital funds that focus on investment in energy start-ups at early stages of development. In addition, CLP seeks opportunities to set up joint ventures with partners focused on energy innovation”.
Bagging the “direct investment from CLP”, as the first start-up company, AutoGrid that provides “energy analytics and AI software” is working with CLP to create “energy optimisation and smart city solutions in Hong Kong”. AutoGrid’s Global Strategy Director, Ben Cohen said:
“We are working to define what the future of energy looks like. Hong Kong has a forward-thinking customer base.”
In the words of the assistant manager of CLP, Eric Lee:
“AI can be used to analyse previous energy consumption data, and anticipate future usage trends automatically”.
And the New Business Development’s head at CLP, Saraansh Dave added:
“The whole Asia region is going through a transformation as markets are deregulated, and more opportunities will surface. We need to be ready to capitalise on those opportunities.”
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