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Tantalus Systems sees more uptake of its smart grid solutions

Smart grid company Tantalus Systems (Tantalus Systems Stock Quote, Charts, News, Analysts, Financials TSX:GRID) has deployed one of its TUNet systems and solutions to upgrade another power grid, this one based in Brainerd, Minnesota. Tantalus now has over 200 utilities using its solutions across North America and the Caribbean Basin.

Tantalus’ advanced metering tech platform TUNet collects and analyzes granular data from meters and devices to help utilities predict potential problems and operate more efficiently, with the Burnaby, BC-based company announcing a new TUNet rollout for Crow Wing Power (CWP) which has a 5,000-sq mile service territory in Minnesota. 

Tantalus said the changeover featured the replacement of over 60,000 aging meters connected through a one-way power line carrier (PLC) communications system with the TUNet smart grid platform including advanced metering infrastructure and load management applications. Crow Wing installed over 15,000 load-control devices to be controlled by Tantalus’ head-end system and load management application. 

“In seeking to deliver purpose-built solutions that meet the immediate and long-term needs of public power and electric cooperative utilities, we take great pride in having the opportunity to work alongside the team at Crow Wing Power to help their utility become more sustainable,” said Peter Londa, Tantalus’ CEO, in a press release on September 29. 

“By collaborating with our user community to digitize the distribution grid, we can empower utilities, such as CWP, to have more granular control and situational awareness of their networks to improve their efficiency and reliability,” Londa said.

Last month, Tantalus celebrated its 200th utility leveraging its solutions with the onboarding of the City of Escanaba, Michigan, with the company saying the utilities are under greater pressure than ever before to continue operations in the face of increasingly common severe weather events and demands to improve efficiencies due to climate change. The company has pointed to the fact that there are almost 3,000 public power and electric cooperatives in North America alone that represent Tantalus’ potential market.

“Securing the 200th member of our user community is a tremendous milestone for our organization and the utilities that already rely on our team,” said Londa in a September 14 press release. “Throughout our history, Tantalus centred its purpose on developing technology solutions in support of the public power and electric cooperative market segment by transforming existing distribution grids into digital networks capable of resolving an increasing number of challenges confronting the utility industry.”

Tantalus reported its most recent quarterly financials in mid-August where the company saw revenue climb by three per cent year-over-year to US$8.0 million and adjusted EBITDA drop from US$737,665 to US$65,475. Over the quarter, Tantalus completed a C$10.6 million financing round and ended the quarter with US$10.7 in cash and total assets of US$29.9 million.

Tantalus, which started trading on the TSX Venture earlier this year before moving to the senior board in May, has so far seen its share price drop from C$3.30 per share to now around C$2.20.

Paradigm Capital analyst Daniel Rosenberg initiated coverage of GRID with a “Buy” rating and C$3.00 target price on October 1, saying Tantalus’ products have seen strong adoption to date with impressive customer retention numbers, while the ongoing government spend on improving infrastructure works in GRID’s favour.

“We view Tantalus as particularly well positioned to benefit from a major capex cycle. The company offers utilities very attractive economics and technological flexibility by combining existing legacy infrastructure with modern technology at a fraction of full rip- and-replace costs. Tantalus is well positioned in serving flexible, cost-effective solutions to an underserved market of smaller-sized utilities,” Rosenberg wrote.

Disclosure: Tantalus Systems is an annual sponsor of Cantech Letter.

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About The Author /

Jayson is a writer, researcher and educator with a PhD in political philosophy from the University of Ottawa. His interests range from bioethics and innovations in the health sciences to governance, social justice and the history of ideas.
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