Weather forecasting is actually more interesting than just knowing if there will be rain tomorrow. Knowing how weather will affect business operations is very important for power and utility companies. Greenlytics, our Startup of the Week is using weather data and artificial intelligence to help companies to transform into a sustainable and more efficient way to produce and consume energy. We spoke to Sebastian Haglund El Gaidi, CEO of Greenlytics, to find out more about their idea.
Hello Sebastian, thank you for taking time for this interview! We start directly with the first question: How would you describe Greenlytics in one sentence?
At Greenlytics, we are like Google analytics for weather and energy data.
Could you tell us more about the technology that you are using?
Sure! We combine the fields of energy, meteorology and data science to create products that help in the transformation to a sustainable energy future. We offer a platform, with four different modules.
The first one is the datahub, where weather data gets collected and stored. In this case, weather data consists out of measurement, analysis and forecast information.
Second, we have our business impact forecast. In detail that means that we make mappings between weather forecasts and how the future weather might impact the business of energy companies. This forecasted impact could for example be, future heat consumption for district heating, storm impact on grid infrastructure or forecasting of renewable power production. The forecasting module uses open source machine learning technologies that can be run on scalable compute infrastructure for large scale computations.
Moreover we have the decision optimisation, which provides scalable optimisation technology. To illustrate: business impact forecasts can be used as input to optimise decisions regarding power trading, maintenance or operations.
The last module in our platform is the visualisation module. This is especially important for the user. With this module we create interactive visualisations that make Big (weather) Data and output from machine learning models descriptive and intuitive for the users.
This sounds very promising, especially with regard to the technologies used. In order to survive on the market in the long run, you still have to prevail against competing companies. Which unique selling proposition do you use to approach this competition?
To put it simply: With the Greenlytics Platform our customers save an immense amount of time. What I mean by that is, energy companies can go from an idea to actual operational value in just 20% of the time compared to before. In addition to this, the Greenlytics platform allows to pull human operators out from the decision loop. Therefore they can oversee and criticise data-driven decisions. We are making decision problems easy to solve, improve process efficiency and reduce costs. It also allows companies to reduce their environmental impact and increase reliability of their assets.
How do you incorporate your product into a profitable business model? Do you offer your product as a service?
Yes, exactly. We offer our Software as a Service, meaning that you get access to the software, but it is still hosted on our servers. Also we employ a ”pay-as-you-go” business model, that is similar to cloud providers such as Amazon or IBM Cloud.
And where is your target market located?
Currently, most of our clients are from Europe. However we are also operating internationally.
What are your plans for the future of Greenlytics? As far as I know, you have recently launched a new product, is that correct?
Yes, we just launched the Beta of our Forecasting-as-a-Service product offering. Anyone can go to our website and sign up – and it will be completely for free during the Beta period. Now we are looking to get pilots as well as investors. For the pilots we are looking to do weather analytics projects for utility companies to help solve their needs as well as continue the development of our platform.
Sebastian, thank you very much for giving us detailed insights into Greenlytics and your products. We are thrilled to see your startup develop further, especially during the next year.
More interesting information about Greenlytics can be found in their Innoloft profile and their requests.