Centrica Innovations has announced investments in two smart home services start-ups.
Greencom Networks has developed an internet of things (IoT) platform that enables consumers to save or earn money by reducing their energy consumption or providing demand-side response to the power grid.
Meanwhile, Mixergy – a spin-off from the University of Oxford’s Energy and Power Group – has developed a smart hot water tank that learns the habits of its users so it can meet their needs without wasting heat.
Sam Salisbury, director of Centrica Innovations Labs, said: “These investments are an important step forward to a time when IoT-enabled technology in the home will operate as a single unit to ensure that energy is used in the most effective way.
“Our mission is to make people’s lives easier, by providing seamless, time-saving services that are easy to use, have a positive environmental impact, and help save them money.
“Just as we have done for our business customers, home energy management takes this a step further by giving these customers access to new products that will enable them to generate and store their own energy as part of the ultimate intelligent home.”
Greencom Networks chief executive Christian Feisst said: “We are delighted to have Centrica on board as an investor. Not only does Centrica have a strong customer base in Great Britain and North America, they also have a proven track record of building up customer-centric service businesses.
“We are looking forward to jointly bring those innovative services to the market.”
In a recent interview with Utility Week, Claire Miles, managing director of Connected Home at Centrica, said: “Our ambition is to be much more of a services provider than an energy provider.”
Miles is a champion of the smart home and giving people more control over their energy.