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Northpower goes live on Gentrack network billing software to improve billing processes and meter asset management

  • 14 January, 2008 11:18

<p>Auckland, New Zealand, January 2008 - Northpower, one of New Zealand’s northernmost electricity network companies, and nationally recognised as one of the ‘best places to work’, has celebrated it’s go live on a new network billing and asset management system - Gentrack Velocity.</p>
<p>Through deployment of Gentrack Velocity, Northpower has successfully automated many of its network billing and energy retailer reconciliation processes improving its overall billing accuracy. Northpower has also consolidated the management of its metering asset data onto Gentrack. This successful implementation of Gentrack, a flagship product of Talgentra Ltd, is further evidence of Talgentra’s continued leadership in enterprise software solutions for the energy industry - taking the percentage of electricity installation connection points (ICPs) managed within Gentrack nationally to 65 per cent or 1.3 million.</p>
<p>Richard Dempster, Northpower’s Divisional Network Assets Manager, commented: “Our vision is to become the best rural network company in New Zealand, and to support this vision we need strong systems to support our people and our business. Given Gentrack’s extensive user base and proven capabilities, we knew it (Gentrack) was the best solution available. We had a number of key objectives to meet as a result of this project, none more important that improving the accuracy of our network billing and asset information Following extensive testing and the successful go live, we are now well on the way to meeting these objectives.”</p>
<p>Northpower, headquartered in Whangarei, owns and manages one of the most consistently efficient energy distribution networks in New Zealand, securing the supply of electricity to some 52,000 homes and businesses across the Northland region. In common with most of the other distributors in New Zealand, a sizeable amount of Northpower’s revenue is derived from network charges, calculated by applying meter consumption data provided by energy retailers to appropriate network tariffs. The deployment of Gentrack has dramatically improved the speed and accuracy of this network billing process, replacing internally developed systems which typically required manual input.</p>
<p>The new system, running on a Windows/SQL technology platform, simplifies the management of Northpower’s network tariffs and automates the upload and validation of consumption files from energy retailers such as Genesis Energy, Meridian Energy, Mercury Energy and Contact Energy. This automation and application of Gentrack’s integrated workflows and data management tools, has also enabled Northpower to refine and improve its billing processes.</p>
<p>In addition to consolidating and automating network billing activities, Northpower has leveraged the system’s latest meter asset management capabilities. In contrast to other network providers in New Zealand, Northpower owns 99 per cent of the meters on its network and consequently places a high emphasis on meter reliability. Northpower now uses Gentrack to manage these meter assets, with the system interfacing directly to a master asset register and WASP system for accurate scheduling of meter testing, maintenance and replacement programs.</p>
<p>Mr Dempster adds: “We see the move to Gentrack as a strategic investment for our business. As a community owned entity, we strive continually to optimise our operations and profitability while ensuring supply and reliability needs are met. With the automation Gentrack brings to the entire billing and asset management environment, the risks and inefficiencies associated with our otherwise manual based processes have been removed, and the quality of our data is significantly improved.”</p>
<p>Northpower is also an active participant in New Zealand’s biannual Network ThinkGroup, a networking forum established and facilitated by Talgentra specifically for energy distributors using Gentrack. This active working group meets to discuss industry issues, trends, and new regulatory directives set by the Electricity Commission, and collectively explores business and operational improvement opportunities through application of the Gentrack solution.</p>
<p>About Gentrack
Gentrack is a leading billing and customer management solution developed in New Zealand specifically for energy and water utility companies. Built for low cost of ownership and rapid implementation, Gentrack is improving the bottom line of utilities in competitive and regulated markets world wide with over 40 sites across New Zealand, Australia, USA, UK, South East Asia and The Pacific Islands.</p>
<p>Gentrack is a flagship product of Talgentra Ltd, a Bayard Group owned enterprise Software Company specialising in billing, meter data and customer management solutions for utility and airport industries. More about Talgentra and its solutions is available at www.talgentra.com.</p>
<p>About Northpower
Northpower is a Northland owned electricity distribution company with over 52,000 electricity customers connected to its network over an area of some 5,700 square kilometers covering the Whangarei and Kaipara District Councils in New Zealand. Its mission is to provide safe reliable hassle free service. Northpower Contracting, a division of Northpower, is a leading supplier of electricity distribution network design, maintenance and construction services with branches across New Zealand’s North Island and in Perth, Western Australia. More about Northpower is available at www.northpower.com.</p>
<p>Contact
Talgentra Limited
Aaron Baker – Marketing Executive
Phone: +64 9 966 6100
Email: info@talgentra.com</p>

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