Emissions, O&M

Accenture opens Innovation Center for utilities, energy clients

Consulting and digital analytics firm Accenture has opened its Industry X.0 Innovation Center geared to help resource companies in the utilities, energy, chemicals, metals and mining sectors.

The Innovation Center is in Essen, Germany. The location is at Zollverin, a former coal mine and now a UNESCO world heritage site. It will offer use cases in artificial intelligence, blockchain, Internet of Things, augmented reality and other parts of the digital journey.

Clients also can collaborate with Accenture experts to prototype products and services.

“The Industry X.0 Innovation Center in Essen addresses the industry-specific challenges and needs of our clients and, through collaboration with our experts, can help them achieve incremental and breakthrough innovation,” said Götz Erhardt, a managing director at Accenture who leads its Resources operating group in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Russia. “The center’s combination of practical use cases, innovation and design-thinking tools and techniques, and industrial-ready digital technologies will help rejuvenate the industrial heart of Germany.”

The center in Essen expands Accenture’s global network of more than 20 innovation centers.

Speaking during Accenture’s International Utilities and Energy Conference last month at Half Moon Bay, California, Mattias Alonso pointed out of how Fortune 500 companies from two decades ago are no longer in business or on the list. Digital is the breaking point between success and failure, he said.

“Utilities are the most susceptible to future disruption,” said Alonso, who is Accenture’s senior global utility lead. “History shows that disruption shifts are underestimated.”

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Digital Transformation of the Power Plant is one of the content tracks at POWERGEN International, happening Nov. 19-21 in New Orleans.