Published on June 28th, 2016 | by Jake Richardson0
Japan’s Largest Electric Utility Partners With Energy Excelerator
June 28th, 2016 by Jake Richardson
Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, Inc. (TEPCO) recently partnered with Energy Excelerator, and will become a member of its Global Advisory Board.
“Energy Excelerator is a leader in energy innovation. At a time when TEPCO is adapting to rapidly changing market conditions, this partnership will allow us to meet companies with innovative business models and technologies that can help us to better serve our customers in Japan,” explained Shin Akimoto, TEPCO’s Director of Innovation.
Blackstone Charitable Foundation, Hawaiian Electric Industries, the State of Hawaii, Hawaii Community Foundation, and Vector are some of the other board members.
Energy Excelerator was recognized as one of the top accelerators in the world recently. It funds clean energy startups in Hawaii and the Asia-Pacific region. Transportation, energy, agriculture, and water are some of its focus areas.
“Electricity markets are shifting faster than ever before. Global utilities are taking notice and looking to innovation to maintain their strategic advantage. We are thrilled to have TEPCO join our Global Advisory Board and support technology transfer across international boundaries,” said Ramsay Siegal, who works on international partnerships for Energy Excelerator.
TEPCO has over 25 million customers and is one of the largest electric utilities in the world. It is also the owner of the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Station No. 1 reactor began operation in 1971. In 2002, a TEPCO president quit due to nuclear safety issues, and later Fukushima events obviously created much awareness that aging nuclear reactors need to be watched more carefully until they are retired. Renewable energy must expand rapidly to make up for the electricity lost when some of them are shut down.
TEPCO is a massive organization, however, with more than 40,000 employees. Technological and organizational change may not come swiftly, though clean energy technology is very much needed. Energy Excelerator specializes in supporting clean energy innovation, so the TEPCO partnership seems sensible.