Blockchain Firm Electron Receives Investment From Japanese Utility TEPCO

Announcements, Blockchain, Investing | January 22, 2018 By:

Japanese energy conglomerate Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings (TEPCO) has invested an undisclosed sum in blockchain startup Electron.

TEPCO is the largest utility in Japan, serving millions of homes and businesses. Its headquarters are located in Uchisaiwaicho, Chiyoda, Tokyo, and international branch offices exist in Washington, DC, and London. It is a founding member of strategic consortiums related to energy innovation and research, such as JINED, INCJ and MAI. It also owns the Fukushima nuclear power plant, the site of the largest nuclear disaster in history.

Electron is a London-based startup harnessing blockchain technologies to design more efficient, resilient and flexible systems for the energy sector. The company designs platforms and services that aims to address the challenges in the energy sector. It maximizes the potential of new technologies such as distributed renewable generation and storage capacity.

The two companies plan to develop uses of blockchain around energy distribution, with the goal of creating a more efficient and reliable infrastructure.

“We are excited to work with Electron to explore and obtain additional know-how on blockchain that has the potential to significantly impact the energy market,” said Shin-ichiro Kengaku, Managing Executive Officer and Chief of the Global Innovation & Investments at TEPCO. “We believe it is very important to continuously seek new opportunities and create new value for society.”

“In the next phase of energy transformation, millions of new assets will be joining energy networks at both the transmission and distribution levels,” said Paul Ellis, CEO of Electron. “There is a huge need to create a robust shared infrastructure that can identify and record the properties of these assets – this can be underpinned by appropriate blockchain technologies.”

Last year, TEPCO, along with a group of global energy giants, partnered with Singapore-based electricity and gas provider SP Group to develop blockchain solutions. The collaboration was part of the Energy Web Foundation (EWF), a commercial blockchain deployment accelerator. The EWF aims to reduce the transaction costs associated with centralized ledgers by using blockchain to generate a single logical copy, eliminating the necessity for reconciliation and settlement.