BKW Inc. has acquired a stake in high-tech startup Ampard Ltd., which develops and markets the AMPARD energy management system throughout Europe. The AMPARD system significantly reduces the overall costs of battery storage systems and allows homeowners to participate in the balancing energy market.
Through AMPARD, BKW is offering its industrial and private customers the opportunity to make profitable use of their energy storage. This technological solution combines photovoltaic facilities and battery storage for end customers. If the home storage system is not used to increase own consumption, AMPARD uses the home storage system to stabilise the electricity grid. By selling this balancing energy, AMPARD generates revenue for homeowners.
Balancing energy is an interesting field of business in which BKW has been active for some time. For example, BKW’s cooperation partner EnerNOC allows large industrial loads to be controlled flexibly. AMPARD brings additional smart credentials to the distribution network so that even small storage systems and loads in households can be used in an intelligent way.
BKW considers the stake an investment in the future. CEO of BKW Suzanne Thoma says: “The reorganisation of the energy system requires innovative solutions. AMPARD offers one such future-proof solution.” Founders of Ampard Ltd., Simon Summermatter and Philipp Eisenring add: “In BKW we have found a partner with a dynamic and innovative presence in the market. We look forward to working together.” BKW will be involved in the startup company as a strategic partner together with the Zürcher Kantonalbank.
The BKW Group is one of Switzerland’s largest energy service companies. It employs around 3,500 people, with its partners it supplies around one million people with electricity, and it covers all stages of energy supply: from production and transport to trading and sales. In addition to the traditional energy business, BKW operates the largest distribution network in Switzerland and positions itself as a leading service provider in the field of energy efficiency and infrastructure. It is also committed to programmes focusing on research and development of innovative technologies to ensure a sustainable, secure energy supply.
The Zürcher Kantonalbank is the leading Zurich-based all-purpose bank with a national focus. It invests risk capital in around 20 startup companies in the Zurich economic area every year through its own PIONIER venture fund. In this way the bank supports the transfer of ideas to business. www.zkb.ch.
Based in Zurich, Ampard Ltd. develops and markets the AMPARD energy management system for economic management of decentralised and heterogeneous power plants. Decentralised power plants may be, for example, solar panels in connection with local battery storage. In combination with the energy management system of Ampard Ltd., home storage systems become swarm storage systems. This allows homeowners to offer balancing energy and therefore to generate additional revenue. Power storage systems from Ampard Ltd. operated using AMPARD were the first swarm storage facilities in Europe officially authorised to supply balancing energy.