Accenture has been selected by FirstEnergy to manage the rollout of approximately two million smart meters to its customers across its four Pennsylvania-based utilities.
The deal is significant for Accenture as the smart meter project represents one of the largest new Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) deployments in North America. It follows a similar deal in December last year with Endesa, a leading electric power company serving more than 25 million customers in Spain and Latin America, for the utility’s smart meter rollout in Spain.
FirstEnergy will install more than two million smart meters over the next several years, meeting all the functional and business requirements outlined in Act 129 passed by the Pennsylvania legislature in 2008.
Under a multi-year contract, Accenture Smart Grid Services will advise FirstEnergy on managing its AMI program by providing services in areas such as program management, business process design, change impact and communications, vendor management, solution architecture, testing and smart metering network operations.
The new AMI platform will deliver significant operational efficiencies, support new and existing customer services programs, and enable FirstEnergy to gain actionable business insights through better visibility into real-time data.
FirstEnergy chose Accenture due to its “extensive experience in smart metering deployments,” said John Dargie from FirstEnergy.
Commenting on the deal with FirstEnergy, Jack Azagury, global managing director for Accenture Smart Grid Services, said, “Smart metering provides a critical and foundational capability as utilities undertake the journey towards a smarter, more resilient digital grid.”
A research from Accenture has shown that utilities are successfully leveraging the data from smart metering solutions through advanced analytics to drive innovative customer propositions, improved reliability, and reduced cost of operations, Azagury said.
Accenture has been involved in several industry initiatives to promote smart meter concept among customers.
The company has partnered with Meters and More, an international non-profit association created by Endesa and its parent company, Italian utility Enel, and supported by a consortia of companies, to promote the deployment of smart meters and develop standards for pan-European and worldwide smart metering solutions.