The smart grid rollout is gaining momentum, spurred recently by the announcement of $3.4 billion in stimulus funding for 100 U.S. utilities and cities. Swiss meter maker Landis+Gyr has already benefited from this smart grid activity, but the firm has still grander ambitions and announced yesterday that it raised $100 million from existing private investors to fund its “rapid growth in smart metering,” according to a release.
L+G said most of its recent growth has been coming from U.S. business, citing unsurprisingly the stimulus package. But CEO Cameron O’Reilly also said in the release that the firm is seeing business opportunities in Australia, Canada, China and the EU, which recently announced an Energy Package that requires at least 80 percent of homes to have smart meters by 2020 and 100 percent by 2022.
The Zug, Switzerland-based company has won several large contracts to supply smart meters, such as 600,000 for the Sacramento Municipal Utility District in California and possibly as many as 700,000 for Oncor, which owns and operates the largest electric distribution network in Texas. But L+G is pushing to expand its smart grid offerings, spending about $90 million per year on R&D to create the “broadest technology portfolio in the industry,” according to the release. The Swiss firm is developing in-home energy monitoring and management solutions and made progress on new “anti-theft technologies which enable utilities to provide electricity to areas that otherwise might go without.”
L+G has also been busy building partnerships with other large companies salivating at the smart grid space. In September, the Swiss firm announced that it is co-developing with SAP an advanced software system that would integrate L+G’s metering management solution with SAP’s business software for utilities.