Cleaning up the Dirty Work of Utility Bill Data Management and Tariff Data Aggregation Wins Urjanet a Growing Ecosystem
In the US market alone there are more than 3,000 utilities and over 50,000 electricity and natural gas tariffs. Even for industry titans like 180,000 employee Schneider Electric and prominent US energy services firms like Ecova, now owned by European energy solutions provider Engie, automating utility bill data management for all utilities used by their customers is prohibitively expensive. And to boot, it’s not the sort of work people in the business are keen on doing. Energy consultants do not want to scan reams of badly printed bills with an OCR reader when they could be doing more value-add activities. That’s why these energy solutions providers as well as dozens of others like Bright Power, Dude Solutions and Envizi use the Urjanet utility bill management solution.
At the recent Urjanet Spark15 customer event, Verdantix heard from a diverse group of firms including Coca-Cola, Energy Print, Rubicon Global and Time Warner Cable on the value of accurate billing data to improve energy management decisions and save money. Urjanet has now integrated with the billing systems of 2,600 utilities around the world with the majority being in the United States. The firm also has to maintain all these IT pipes to ensure data can be pulled, cleaned and interpreted correctly. Not an easy task for the Urjanet team in Atlanta, GA and the 50 India-based developers. That’s why increasingly, a big ecosystem of suppliers – from 20 person real estate energy efficiency advisors in Manhattan to the biggest players in the market – look at Urjanet as a valued partner who delivers cleaned up, codified and actionable utility bill data. Network economics mean that once the Urjanet business gains momentum it should continue to grow robustly.
The product roadmap is going in two directions. Firstly, Urjanet wants to provide ease of access for all market segments and so offers a self-service user interface for small businesses and an Application Programming Interface (API) so more sophisticated energy management providers can pull data from Urjanet into their own systems like Schneider Electric’s Resource Advisor. Secondly, Urjanet is pushing into other utility data sets such as tariff data, interval data, water data, waste data and telecoms data. Time will tell if the value proposition can be expanded so far outside the core energy and utility market segment which has a unique set of data management problems to solve and specific uses which make the data valuable.
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