Logica has announced that security contractor QinetiQ has joined its bid to provide the data backbone for the UK’s Smart Grid infrastructure.
The companies, alongside third partner SAP, are bidding to provide the data management platform for the 50 million smart meters that are due to be installed across the country by 2020. The contract is worth £240 million, and will last for seven to nine years, starting at the end of next year.
The winning bidder will provide data management software, IT infrastructure, integration and application management services to the Data Communications Company (DCC), an independent body being set up by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC).
The DCC will act as a hub for customers and suppliers, standardising the interaction between utility companies and customers. The aim is to make it easier for customers to switch electricity or gas providers, and easier for new utility companies to enter the market.
Tara McGeehan, Logica’s utilities director, said it is important that consumers have confidence in the security of their data if the smart meter project is to be successful. “Increasingly governments are recognising that truly competitive energy markets are the best way to drive innovation," she said. "This requires a secure, efficient market infrastructure to be put in place, the development of which is where our partnership with SAP and QinetiQ is focussed."
QinetiQ’s managing director of security, Alasdair Rodgers, said: "Our collaboration to deliver the secure, high resilience systems required at the heart of Britain’s smart metered energy market will give everyone confidence that the market can operate consistently and reliably to the levels demanded by utilities, government and us all, as consumers."
The tender closed in mid-October, but Logica said that it was only announcing the formalised partnership with QinetiQ now, and had been working with the company for several months.
The tender notice contains a statement directed at consortium bids, saying that the Department of Energy and Climate Change reserves the right to dictate the form of that consortium and the distribution of liability.