(Above: Itron displays its OpenWay Riva solution at DistribuTECH 2017 in San Diego)
Itron completed its previously announced purchase of privately-held demand response firm Comverge by purchasing its parent company, Peak Holding Corp., for about $100 million.
With the acquisition, Itron strengthens its portfolio of grid solutions with Comverge's demand response offering while also paving the way for distributed energy management applications using Itron’s OpenWay Riva IoT solution.
“We are excited to add Comverge’s strong, healthy and growing business and integrate Comverge and Itron’s well-proven solutions to enable distributed energy management,” said Mark de Vere White, president of Itron’s Electricity business line. “The growing need for utilities to meet energy efficiency regulations, enable customer choice in energy management and better optimize the use of distributed energy resources is driving a convergence between smart connected networks and demand side solutions. Through this acquisition, we are helping our utility customers address these trends to better facilitate grid performance and reliability, reduce peak demand, drive customer engagement and save energy.”
Merging Comverge’s solution with Itron’s OpenWay Riva solution will allow utilities to connect with homes to improve operational efficiency, and distribution and energy efficiency, while allowing consumers to directly participate in managing their energy use.
Taking advantage of the computing power of OpenWay Riva, the joint solution will enable utilities to derive operational benefit from their demand response and distributed energy resources (DER) through reliable network communications and real-time measurement and verification of load drop.
The combined solution will bring new data and real-time awareness that promises to greatly enhance the consumer engagement experience. It will allow price signals to be sent to consumers in real time and enable demand charge management with real-time alerts and automated load control. Imagine a solution that could learn a consumer’s preferences and willingness to tolerate higher temperatures in their home by presenting cost versus comfort tradeoff settings and observing interactions with the thermostat during load control events. The possibilities for these new capabilities are plentiful.