Schneider-Electric - Fortum Finland
Gaining real-time intelligence to administer and operate the power grid more efficiently (Finland)
Fortum is a leading energy company serving the Nordic countries, Russia and the Baltic Rim area. Its activities include the generation, distribution and sale of electricity and heat, and the operation and maintenance of power plants. The company is a leader in sustainability, excelling in CO2-free nuclear and hydro power production, natural resource-efficient combined heat and power production, and operating in competitive energy markets.
In 2010, Fortum’s sales totaled EUR 6.3 billion and its operating profit was EUR 1.7 billion. The company employs approximately 10,500 people and its shares are quoted on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki.
In Finland, regulations require distribution system operators to change electricity meters to smart meters by the end of 2013. However, the systems, resources and time needed to deploy, monitor and manage the Automated Meter Infrastructure (AMI) are complex and demanding. Fortum needed a provider to meet this regulatory requirement, and to help manage the complete overhaul of meter-to-cash processes, as well as major changes to supplier change processes that result from the full-scale introduction of smart metering.
“Schneider Electric’s Smart Metering Services Platform has been a key ingredient in the complete renewal of our meter-to-cash process. With the platform, we are moving customers away from legacy estimate invoicing to a process where the actual power consumed is invoiced. This has improved customer satisfaction and reduced calls to our call centers on invoicing-related issues,” said Linnanen.
Fortum is able to realize major savings in the fields of manual meter reading, remote connection and disconnection, call center operation and debt collection. ”In addition to billing, we now have the capability to remotely connect and disconnect service, which has helped us to better manage sites without contracts and also boost our debt collection
process,” explained Linnanen.
The open architecture of Schneider Electric solutions provides utilities with the option to easily integrate with additional technologies and expand functionality. “For us, the rollout of Smart Metering and invoicing improvements is just the first step,” said Linnanen. “We plan to get much more out of our smart meters, such as real-time consumption information to customers via in-home-displays and utilization of smart meters in outage management. The professionalism of Schneider Electric’s team and the reliability of their core metering solution make them a strong candidate for developing future solutions with us."
Fortum chose Schneider Electric for planning, development and roll-out of the Smart Metering Services Platform, a component of Schneider Electric’s comprehensive Smart Grid Solution. “We’re using Schneider Electric Smart Metering Titanium integrated with Echelon’s Networked Energy Services (NES). On top of the systems, Schneider Electric is providing us a wide range of system integration services, rollout services and daily operations of the metering platform, such as meter reading services and incident management,” said Heikki Linnanen, project manager, Smart Metering Finland.