Cedrus Enterprises Holding, a dynamic multi-faceted Lebanese Holding company, announced today that it has acquired an equity stake in ‘Network Energy Services’ (NES) – a newly established company spearheaded by S&T AG, a leading provider of IT systems in Austria and Eastern Europe.
The new company was created following the purchase made by S&T AG of the Grid Modernization division (smart metering and smart grid) of the California-based Echelon Corporation. This newly established company ‘Network Energy Services Corporation’ (NES) brings Cedrus Enterprises Holding in partnership with S&T AG and Austro Holding. The closing took place in September 30, 2014.
Cedrus Enterprises Holding has developed a business model and plan with the object of spearheading an investment program targeting the MENA and Indian sub-continent regions. The underlying strategy seeks to identify, and subsequently capitalize upon and expand, regional business opportunities available for smart metering and smart grid. The approach Cedrus intends to adopt calls for joint collaboration and effort with local, regional and international players acting through joint venture partnerships. As an added incentive, Cedrus will explore with local partner and international partners prospects that may be available for establishing NES smart meter manufacturing facilities aimed at benefiting the region it intends to serve.
Gaith Madi, CEO of Cedrus Enterprise Holding said: “The transaction represents a strategic threshold for Cedrus Enterprises Holding as it continues to move forward in its pursuit of opportunities in the regions it serves. Given Cedrus Enterprises Holding historic relationship with Echelon Corporation and ubitronix System Solutions GmbH, this new venture that brings S&T and Cedrus Enterprises Holding within the NES organization is intended to further enhance and strengthen the capabilities and effectiveness of both partners”.
Cedrus Enterprises Holding had previously invested considerable time, effort and resources in evaluating and testing almost all advanced Metering Infrastructure Vendors and had concluded that Echelon technology provides the best performing technology available in this field. It is in this context that Cedrus Enterprises Holding chose to join S&T AG in NES post acquisition of Echelon smart modernization division.
“Acquiring Echelon’s grid business means an important expansion of our Smart Energy capabilities, further demonstrating our commitment to the smart energy market and our belief in the smart grid opportunity!” said Hannes Niederhauser, CEO of S&T. “Utilities favor end-to-end offerings from proven vendors with the experience, assets and people required to successfully deliver grid modernization solutions. We look forward to combining the NES platform offerings with S&T’s software, system integration and project delivery capabilities, to serve smart energy customers throughout Europe and beyond.”
NES scope of work covers a large scale of business including the development, manufacture and sales of products for delivery, measurement, monitoring and control of electric power through the electric grid, the transport of data, and load management devices used to control the electric grid. The transaction includes the transfer of research and development facilities in Silicon Valley (California) and Fargo (North Dakota) and the team of experienced professionals and engineers formerly belonging to the grid modernization division of Echelon Corporation. Furthermore, the NES will have the right, under license, to utilize Echelon’s advanced power line communication (PLC) technology. It is worthwhile noting that over 34 million smart meters worldwide are currently running on Echelon-based technology.
Bo Danielsen, Chairman of the OSGP Alliance and Department Director at SEAS-NVE, said “As Chairman of the OSGP Alliance, we are very pleased to see our most senior and active member launch as an independent company solely focused on building solutions to move the industry forward. As a customer, I am very pleased and excited about the solution roadmap and look forward to working with this proven team of industry recognized professionals.”
Madi concluded: “Cedrus Enterprises Holding believes that this strategic investment will substantially enhance its ability to remain highly competitive and to offer its target clients feasible, innovative and commercially viable solutions that meet their current and future needs and expectations. The company intends to capitalize on the existing demand for such smart solutions in the MENA region, especially in the Levant region, the Arab Gulf Countries and India”.
Cedrus Enterprises Holding investment is consistent with its strategy of positioning itself as the premier provider of fully-integrated, innovative technology solutions serving the energy utility sector within the MENA region. This had lead to the establishment of a long-term working relationship with one of the largest and best managed utility company on the Indian sub-continent – Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited, a joint venture between Tata Power & the Government of Delhi. It had also formed the basis of the relationship with Echelon Corporation, a decade-old company at the cutting edge of smart grid and network communications technology.
Ubitronix system solutions GmbH, a leading provider of integrated energy management and smart grid solutions, served to further enhance our capabilities and provided the last link in the chain. This powerful combination of resources, expertise and capability was the cornerstone of the company’s drive to enter into the bid for the Kurdistan Regional Government AMI tender, meeting and surpassing all expectations with the result of having scored highest on technical grounds against all bidders. The awarding has since been delayed due to developments and disturbances within the region in question.