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CPower, Stem launch demand-side energy storage solution

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CPower, Stem launch demand-side energy storage solution

Stem Inc. and CPower Inc. have partnered to join their services into a single demand-side energy solution.

The new service combines Stem's energy storage services with CPower's demand response and curtailment services, the companies announced Aug. 8. Karen Butterfield, Stem's chief commercial officer, said in an Aug. 11 interview with S&P Global Market Intelligence that combining a quick, highly-responsive energy storage device with a more disruptive and less expensive service gives them "the magic behind the partnership."

"If the utility calls a curtailment event because they don't have enough generation at that moment, what will happen with this partnership is Stem's intelligence software will determine what the combination of energy storage discharging and building curtailment is to maximize savings for the customer," she said, describing the idea as similar to bundling insurance policies.

SNL Image

A Stem Inc. battery energy storage unit.

Source: Stem Inc.

In a statement, CPower President and CEO John Horton added that the solution offered by the partnership will be valuable for customers by saving them money while also providing demand flexibility.

Stem and CPower are marketing the solution to commercial customers before selling it to a larger market, Butterfield said. Stem has about 300 customers, while CPower has more than 1,000 commercial and industrial customers.

"Why not all of them? Why wouldn't all customers want to double down on their savings and earning potential?" she asked. "Once we targeted all our customers ... then we start working in the market with a combined offering where we go out to customers and say, 'Hey, let's combine these from the get-go.'"

Both companies have recently been expanding their services across the country, In June, Stem reached a deal with Austin Energy to provide solar power storage options for its commercial customers as part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Sustainable and Holistic Integration of Energy Storage and Solar PV, or SHINES, program.

CPower has also made deals with utilities to provide demand response programs, including a two-year agreement with National Grid plc's Massachusetts and Rhode Island service territories to help reduce energy use at peak hours and save up to $35,000 per MW. In January, CPower and EnerNOC Inc. announced plans to administer a demand response program for reducing summertime peak energy use for three of FirstEnergy Corp.'s four Pennsylvania utilities.