Utopus Insights, an emerging leader in energy analytics, was launched in 2017 by IBM, Vermont Electric Power Company and Boston Consulting Group. The company’s core workforce had served as IBM’s energy research team, working for over 15 years with leading OSIsoft customers in the energy space such as Alliander, Hydro Quebec, DTE Energy, Oncor and Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO) to develop digital solutions to energy transformation challenges. Utopus Insights provides breakthrough software at the intersection of energy, data, and weather to help customers unleash affordable innovation that delivers results. The company’s most recent work prior that led to launch was formed out of a project that included VELCO, IBM, and the University of Vermont and is leveraging OSIsoft PI System to generate customer value. The company was purchased in February by Vestas Wind Systems A/S, already an OSIsoft customer.
Involved from the start, Kerrick Johnson, Co-Founder and Chief Ecosystem Officer at Utopus Insights, previously at VELCO, will describe the amazing journey the project took from research partnership with VELCO to startup company to being purchased by Vestas. Kerrick will also outline Utopus Insights’ future powered by its new ownership.
Kerrick Johnson is Utopus Insights’ founding Chief Ecosystem Officer. Prior to joining the Utopus team, Kerrick served as Vice President—Strategy and Communication at Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO). Kerrick joined VELCO in 2006 as the company undertook a $1 billion expansion—the largest in its history. He conceived and led VELCO‘s work to secure the nation’s only successful statewide smart grid project through a $68 million DOE investment grant, and spearheaded implementation of a $75 million statewide fiber optic network. Kerrick’s responsibilities expanded to include IT/Telecommunications, leading the company’s operationalization of the fiber network, creation of a statewide radio system, and other bold strategic initiatives. His conceived and led a research engagement with IBM that produced the Vermont Weather Analytics Center, an energy data and analytics platform that lowers weather-related operational costs, increases grid reliability and unlocks the value of renewable generation. This initiative grew into VELCO’s partnership with the newly launched Utopus Insights.
Prior to his 17 years in Vermont transmission and distribution utility work, Kerrick worked for the Vermont Attorney General’s Office as an Investigator for the Consumer Protecting Division and Legislative Liaison. He attended Vermont’s Johnson State College and served four years in the US Air Force as an airborne Russian linguist after having graduated from the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California.