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ENGIE Achieves its Digital Transformation with AWS and C3 IoT

2016

ENGIE is the world’s leading independent energy producer with presence in 70 countries and 150,000 employees. The company embarked on a digital transformation in October 2016 and created the ENGIE Digital structure to support the effort.

“We are dealing with a true revolution in the energy world, which is turning our business model upside down. ENGIE has anticipated this evolution and has launched a real transformation process to become the world leader in energy transition,” says Gérard Guinamand, director at ENGIE Digital. “Digital is one of the key factors for us to achieve our objective with tools based on the IoT and big data, among others. Using the cloud is vital for making new applications available and deploying them internationally; this is why we have chosen Amazon Web Services. AWS is the unrivalled leader in its field.”

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Using the cloud is vital for making new applications available and deploying them internationally; this is why we have chosen Amazon Web Services. AWS is the unrivalled leader in its field.”

Gérard Guinamand
Director at ENGIE Digital

Energy Transition and Digital Transformation go hand in hand

ENGIE has four pillars to achieve its digital transformation: offer products and applications with high digital value to its customers; join forces with strategic partners to facilitate their implementation; be cloud-and-API-first in order to be flexible; and guarantee that its products are developed securely. “Naturally, we chose AWS to help us with this transition,” explains Guinamand. “We are a major international group and we have to work with the best experts in each sector in order to take advantage of their experience. There’s no room for experimentation. We need to make sure that we have the right partner for our cloud projects so that we can deploy them quickly and effectively worldwide.”

Reducing Time-to-Market

AWS enables ENGIE Digital to develop applications and products that are accessible to as many people as possible, in every country where it is present. “We also needed flexibility, the ability to see the big picture, and to give our developers secure access from anywhere in the world,” says Guinamand.

These needs are compounded by the fierce competition faced by companies involved in the energy market. “We need to be able to get our products and services out very quickly, before anyone else. Thanks to our cloud development platform, which is based on AWS infrastructure, we are now able to release new solutions very quickly and on a wide scale. For example, we began developing our latest five applications at the start of the year and six months later, they had all been released onto the market. This is a huge change from the past!” adds Guinamand.

Some examples of services that ENGIE developed are Clara Domus in Italy, which is a smart building application for customers who use the Linky smart meter to control their electricity consumption, and Delta, which analyzes the behavior of power stations in order to increase output and carry out predictive maintenance. “The analysis tools that we put in place enable us to detect the causes of differences in performance between two electricity power stations, for example,” explains Guinamand.

Deploying IoT Services with AWS at Clara Domus

Clara Domus enables building managers to monitor the operation of a building equipped with sensors in real-time to see how the building is behaving on a daily basis. This enables them to detect any problems and create plans to deal with them. Currently there are 500 buildings that connected with over 16,000 sensors. In time, it is expected that there will be 3,500 buildings connected with 160,000 sensors.

Clara Domus is supported by AWS infrastructure as well as by C3 IoT, AWS’s big data and analytics partner. “We use C3 IoT as PaaS to build our own applications that are completed by AWS IoT, which collects the data and integrates it into the applications before connecting to C3 IoT,” explains Guinamand. “Choosing the cloud lets the ENGIE Digital control the financial input related to this type of digital transformation because the services adapt to our needs with no additional consumption.”

Leaving Platform and Infrastructure to the Experts

The relationship with AWS is essential to ENGIE Digital because it means that AWS experts are on hand to constantly train ENGIE’s teams and transfer skills. “The objective is to ensure that at the end of the three year contract we can grow and enhance what we have built with a certain degree of autonomy.”

“It’s clear that we wouldn’t have been able to release our latest services if we hadn’t used AWS. We would have had to build our own services and put everything in place for both platform and infrastructure. You can just imagine the time would have taken,” concludes Guinamand.


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