Launch of Veriown Energy and Innovation Center

A new Chicago-based company formally launched on July 29 focusing on delivering “immediate scale and innovation in commercial-sized, distributed energy solutions.” Called Veriown Energy, the company is a spin out of New Generation Power, a global developer of utility scale renewable energy and infrastructure, with booked contract revenues over $600M.

Focused on the commercial and institutional market, Veriown plans to offer businesses, universities, governments and other institutions on-site distributed solar and distributed energy services – including microgrid systesms — to allow its clients to lock in predictable energy rates with little to no capital expense.

Veriown’s management team has a significant track record in energy, utility infrastructure, government policy, smart grid R&D, investment banking, and building global companies for public markets. As CEO, Steve Johanns joins Veriown from Eaton, where he developed its Energy & Infrastructure business strategy for the central region of U.S. Tom Levitsky, formerly Director of Global Performance Engineering for First Solar, will serve as Vice President of Operations, bringing more than 20 years of utility, large industrial, and government systems engineering to his position at Veriown.

The new company also has relationships with companies such as Eaton, Jones Lang LaSalle, Talesun Solar, and WESCO, which provide Veriown a window into the potential market, technology solutions, and supply chain capabilities.

Also announced was the creation of the Veriown Innovation Center (VIC), a joint partnership of Veriown and CogniTek Management Systems (CogniTek), which will commercialize a number of patents and R&D assets focused on developing and commercializing distributed generation technologies designed to enable continuous energy without the need for subsidies. 

Michael Gurin, CEO of CogniTek, will be Chief Technology Officer of VIC. Sean Murdock, founder of NanoSonix, will be Chief Strategy Officer.

According to research by Navigant, the renewable distributed energy generation (RDEG) market will experience strong growth over the next several years, with total system revenues increasing from $50.8 billion in 2009 to $154.7 billion by 2015. During this period, the annual RDEG capacity additions will increase from 5.9 gigawatts (GW) in 2009 to 15.1 GW in 2015.

Also as part of its launch, Veriown announced a partnership with the Galvin Center for Electricity Innovation at the Illinois Institute of Technology to collaborate on delivering the next generation of microgrid solutions to the industry. 

“The Galvin Center is pleased to partner with Veriown in fulfilling our collective ambition to create new advanced distributed energy and microgrid solutions,” Dr. Mohammad Shahidehpour, Director of Galvin Center for Electricity Innovation at Illinois Institute of Technology. “It is a very dynamic and ever-changing energy landscape and we look forward to the collaboration ahead.”

One customer of Veriown – the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) – recently signed an agreement with the company that calls for the construction of three megawatts of solar power for UVI’s two campuses and assist in reducing the institution’s dependence on fossil fuel by 50 percent by 2015. The photovoltaic system will use approximately 4.2 acres on the St. Thomas Campus and 3.9 acres on the Albert A. Sheen Campus on St. Croix. The system is expected to produce 4.5 million kilowatt-hours annually.

“This is a historic and transformative development for the University and the Virgin Islands,” said UVI President David Hall. “Once this project is completed, UVI will have blazed a trail that many universities throughout the world are destined to follow. Energy consumption and costs are crippling challenges facing the Virgin Islands and the broader Caribbean; and this initiative creates a pathway for addressing the problems.” 

Source: Veriown Energy