May 4, 2021

HCL Technologies and Hitachi launch digital foundation

Digitalfoundation
Powergrids
HybridCloud
DigitalTransformation
Dominic Ellis
3 min
HCL Technologies unveils multi-year contract with Hitachi ABB Power Grids to build a new greenfield digital foundation

HCL Technologies has announced a multi-year contract with Hitachi ABB Power Grids to build a new greenfield digital foundation as part of a global transformation program.

Through this engagement, HCL will help Hitachi ABB Power Grids establish "a new, efficient and modern independent IT organization" and support its continued business transformation by reducing dependency on the historic infrastructure.

Hitachi ABB Power Grids was formed in 2020 as a joint venture between Hitachi and ABB to create a new global leader in pioneering power and digital technologies. As part of the new digital foundation, HCL will provide Hybrid Cloud ServicesDigital Workplace ServicesNext-gen Network ServicesUnified Service Management and Cybersecurity Services

Leveraging HCL’s  “Cloud Smart” offerings, Hitachi ABB Power Grids will benefit from an adaptive portfolio with innovative cloud services driven by intelligent automation and a powerful partner ecosystem. These capabilities will enhance Hitachi ABB Power Grids’ operations in more than 90 countries and improve end-user experiences for its 36,000 employees worldwide.

Hitachi ABB Power Grids identified that HCL was best placed to develop from scratch a new Digital Foundation that would meet its strategic objectives to drive simplicity, speed and scalability throughout its global operations. HCL will establish strategic digital platforms, global standardization of IT services and future-proof solutions to keep pace with changing business requirements and evolving technology capabilities.  

“As a pioneering technology leader, we’re digitalizing the entire energy value chain to make the world’s power grids stronger, smarter and greener. It’s crucial that this transformation also includes our internal operations, as well as the solutions we create for our clients,” said Michael Loechle, CIO, Hitachi ABB Power Grids.

“We knew we needed to break away from the historic IT organization we’d inherited, and HCL was the perfect strategic partner to help us create a next-generation operating model. We were particularly impressed by HCL’s ability to create high quality and end user-focused solutions for our employees and offer an end-to-end model to ensure seamless execution. HCL’s track record for bringing a culture of innovation to service delivery will ensure we are well placed to enjoy the long-term and sustainable benefits of digitalization.”

“We’re excited to work with Hitachi ABB Power Grids to build a new independent Digital IT environment. HCL will bring its well-developed expertise in executing complex carve-out programs for the new digital world,” said Pankaj Tagra, Corporate Vice President and Nordic and DACH Head, HCL Technologies. “The opportunity to build a new Digital Foundation for such a major global organization is testament to the trust that our clients have in HCL’s next-generation transformational expertise.”

In April, Hitachi ABB Power Grids launched its EconiQ portfolio of products, services and solutions designed for a carbon neutral-future and teamed up with GE Renewable Energy’s Grid Solutions business in a cross-licensing agreement related to the use of an alternative gas to sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) used in high voltage equipment.

HCL opened an Innovation center focused on digital acceleration in Mississauga, Ontario in March and struck an agreement with Tenneco to oversee its IT modernisation and transformation.

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May 5, 2021

AES Corp seals 10-year carbon-free energy deal with Google

AESCorp
Google
datacenters
Dominic Ellis
3 min
AES Corporation will ensure energy powering Google's Virginia data centers will be '90% carbon free'

The AES Corporation has struck a 10-year supply contract with Google to provide near-carbon-free energy to power its Virginia-based data centers which will start later this year.

Claiming the first clean energy procurement deal in the world of its kind, AES will help ensure that the energy powering those data centers will be 90% carbon-free when measured on an hourly basis.

AES will become the sole supplier of the data centers' carbon-free energy needs on an annual basis, sourcing energy from a portfolio of wind, solar, hydro and battery storage resources to be developed or contracted by AES.

The agreement marks an important step in meeting Google's previously announced goal to run its business on 100% carbon-free energy on an hourly basis by 2030.

"Last year, Google set an ambitious sustainability goal of committing to 100% 24/7 carbon-free energy by 2030. Today, we are proud that through our collaboration with Google, we are making 24/7 carbon-free energy a reality for their data centers in Virginia," said Andrés Gluski, AES President and CEO. "This first-of-its-kind solution, which we co-created with Google, will set a new sustainability standard for companies and organizations seeking to eliminate carbon from their energy supply."

"Not only is this partnership with AES an important step towards achieving Google's 24/7 carbon-free energy goal, it also lays a blueprint for other companies looking to decarbonize their own operations," says Michael Terrell, Director of Energy at Google. "Our hope is that this model can be replicated to accelerate the clean energy transition, both for companies and, eventually, for power grids." 

AES assembled the 500MW portfolio from a combination of AES' own renewable energy projects and those of third-party developers, which were selected, sized and contracted to meet Google's energy needs across a number of considerations, including cost efficiency, additionality and carbon-free energy profile.

The portfolio assembled by AES is expected to require approximately $600 million of investment and generate 1,200 jobs, both permanent and construction, in the host communities. These efforts will greatly simplify Google's energy procurement and management at a competitive price while decarbonizing Google's load and the broader PJM grid.

This supply agreement follows on the strategic alliance AES and Google formed in November 2019 to leverage Google Cloud technology to accelerate innovation in energy distribution and management and advance the adoption of clean energy. AES is pioneering greener, smarter energy innovations, with the goal of expanding the services available to large-scale corporate customers.

The Google.org Impact Challenge on Climate commits €10M to fund bold ideas that aim to use technology to accelerate Europe’s progress toward a greener, more resilient future. Selected organisations may receive up to €2M in funding and possible customised post-grant support from the Google for Startups Accelerator to help bring their ideas to life.

Last year it issued $5.75 billion in sustainability bonds to fund ongoing and new environmentally or socially responsible projects. To read its 2020 Environment report, click here.

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