April 9, 2018 Read More →

U.S. Utility CEO’s See a ‘Disaggregated’ Industry Ahead

S&P Global Market Intelligence:

Electric utility executives are hedging for an uncertain future by carefully embracing potentially disruptive technologies and novel regulatory structures.

“What we have embarked on is essentially a path of what I call creative destruction,” Southern Co. Chairman, President and CEO Tom Fanning said Southern Co. Chairman, President and CEO Tom Fanning said on the sidelines of the Energy Thought Summit in Austin, Texas. “We’re building a capability to attack our own model.”

Fanning described a “disaggregated” state of affairs in which the making, moving and selling of electricity is put on the premises of customers, regardless of class. PowerSecure provides distributed infrastructure for commercial and industrial customers, often data centers that demand high reliability.

The CEO said while he does not believe the industry will, in his lifetime, completely leave the make-move-sell model, “it is clear that this disaggregated infrastructure is going [to happen].”

“When I got this job, I adopted this notion of ‘honor the past, build for the future’ … We could have just battened the hatches and played tremendous defense, and tried to keep things as they are as long as we could,” Fanning said, referring to the scrapped Kemper coal gasification project and the troubled Vogtle nuclear plant expansion.

More ($): Utilities embrace ‘creative destruction’ as they look to future

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