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Interaction | August 2015

The turnaround for Smart Grids will come when it increases revenues of utilities

states Manu Rishi Puri, Principal ┬┤ Resources Group, Accenture Services Pvt. Ltd, who believes that Smart Grid solutions will not sell the way it has been sold till now.

What are the opportunities for Smart Grid players like you in the Indian sub-continent? What growth you expect in this sector?
For IT consulting companies like us, there are a lot of opportunities on the analytics front. When Smart Grids are implemented through various applications, there will be a huge amount of data generated from applications like MDMS etc.

This data, if not churned properly will be of no use. Secondly, with Smart Grids coming up, there will be a lot of work that is non-core to utilities like call center, of F&A data processing etc, which they would want to outsource, which is where organizations like ours come in.

How is implementation of Smart Grid likely to enhance quality of power and help common Indians?
Smart Grid is simply a well-connected grid. The grids will be self-healing, which will enable more reliable power transmission. Utilities will be able to detect outages before the user notices It and can heal the same faster. This will benefit the common population of India, as with more reliable transmission, the common public will get better power.

Which areas will attract more demand as far as Smart Grid is concerned┬┤transmission, distribution or generation?
Smart Grids are applicable across all three, but the demand is more on the distribution side, as changes here will benefit the customers the most.

Do we see encouragement for utilisation of Smart Grid technology in India? What kind of technology have you deployed and what is the trend?
Smart Grid as we have known in India, was mainly concentrated on AMI solutions. That did not take off well, as it was difficult to prove the ROI. The definition is now changing and new Smart Grid may come out in a new merged form with larger initiatives like smart cities etc, of which it can be a part of.

When do you see demand for Smart Grid technology picking up? Do you think states are providing opportunities for it?
I do not see the standalone demand picking up for Smart Grid in the near foreseeable future. However, it will definitely be merged with smart cities or renewable projects.

Smart Grid as a concept in India is under development, with micro solutions scattered across regions. Will it witness a turnaround? And how?
We need to be innovative in providing Smart Grid solutions. I think it will not sell the way it has been sold till now. The turnaround will be when Smart Grid solutions are solutions which solve customer problems or increase revenues for the utilities.

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