The majority of British Gas’ 16 million smart meters will be supplied by Landis+Gyr, and British Gas intends to recruit 500 people to install the meters.
As part of a government initiative, British Gas will roll out smart meters as standard to homes and businesses, and the utility has signed a deal worth about $954 million with Landis+Gyr to replace current gas and electricity meters with new smart meters.
The new meters will offer an in-home display showing how much gas and electricity is being used in real time as well as the cost. Meter readings will be sent directly to energy suppliers.
Landis+Gyr has been working with British Gas for the last three years to develop smart meters for its customers, and the partners have already installed more than one million smart meters in customers’ homes and businesses.
As a result of the deal with British Gas, Landis+Gyr expects to double its 600-strong UK workforce and extend its manufacturing facilities to meet not only the demands of British Gas’s roll-out, but also those of its other UK customers.
British Gas has already announced more than 1,000 roles for smart energy experts who will install smart meters and provide energy efficiency advice to households. Today’s announcement paves the way for the recruitment of 500 smart energy experts in 2014.
British Gas expects household customers to see a 5 percent reduction in energy use attributed to the smart meters. The meters will enable Time-of-Use tariffs, which provide lower prices for electricity used during off-peak hours. By reducing peak demand, the need to build new power generation capacity in the future is also reduced. The meters will also enable the use of microgeneration such as solar power and the local sharing of such energy in the community.
British Gas serves around 12 million homes in Britain – nearly half the country’s homes – as well as providing energy to one million UK businesses.
Recently, Philadelphia-based utility PECO said it has installed about 700,000 smart meters across its service territory since March 2012 and will complete the deployment of smart meters to all 1.6 million its customers, both residential and commercial, by the end of 2014 – five years ahead of its original schedule. PECO is installing Landis+Gyr meters for residential customers and Elster meters for commercial ratepayers.