March 12th, 2018, London: This week, Open Energi is part of an Innovate UK mission taking a delegation of the nation’s most promising innovators and entrepreneurs to Melbourne and Sydney; two of the most forward-thinking cities in terms of their approach to sustainable living and smart infrastructure.

Open Energi will be aiming to bring back lessons, business partnerships, investment and export opportunities to help the business grow and ultimately bolster UK productivity.

The Australian energy market has high levels of distributed generation, in particular solar PV, and needs greater flexibility to help it manage growing levels of intermittent, renewable penetration. Open Energi’s technology, which helps large energy users to cut costs and carbon by responding to changing patterns of supply, is a perfect fit. The mission offers Open Energi an opportunity to connect with local market participants and learn first-hand about the challenges and opportunities that exist in the Australian energy market. During the mission, Open Energi will be presenting to a number of Australian water utilities.

David Hill, Commercial Director at Open Energi comments: ‘Cities across the globe face the same challenge; populations are booming putting enormous pressure on infrastructure and requiring radical new solutions to maintain and improve living standards for their citizens. Growing levels of distributed generation from renewable sources has an important role to play in urban environments, but with space at a premium there are limits to what can be achieved.

Harnessing flexibility in our demand for energy so that we adjust what we use in line with available supply can help to provide power for our cities to operate, businesses to grow and citizens to lead healthy lives. We’re excited to have the opportunity to participate in this mission and explore ways we can bring our technology to Australia.’

 James Taplin, Urban Living Innovation Lead at Innovate UK comments: ‘The most successful and resilient cities are those that have been able to adapt to the changing world around them. With increasing urban populations and decreasing global resources available to meet those population needs, cities increasingly have to do more with less. This constraint is a powerful source of innovation as they look not only to do things better but to do radically better things as well.

With this entrepreneur mission, we want to help UK and Australian advanced urban services businesses find new collaborators and new opportunities. We want to link them with new city opportunities and investments to the mutual benefit of all. The greatest innovation comes from the mingling of diverse ideas in an environment that is conducive to their growth. With this entrepreneur mission to Australia, we aim to achieve just that.

A great island of untapped potential

With 95% of global R&D and innovation being conducted outside the UK[1], access to knowledge, markets, skills and partners increasingly takes place globally. Innovate UK recognises that a lack of access to local knowledge remains a fundamental barrier to the UK’s overseas business success; from visibility of potential collaborators and their lessons, new technologies and approaches, to new commercial opportunities and research.

[1] 95 per cent of global R&D is taking place outside of the UK. Strategy&, ‘UK ranks eighth globally for corporate R&D spending’, October 2016.