SPL, a provider of billing, outage and distribution management solutions for the utilities industry, has finalized the acquisition of the major assets of CES International, a market leader in utility outage management.
We aim to provide the economies of one-stop shopping, a common interface, and unprecedented application efficiency to a market that, up to now, the software industry has underserved, SPL CEO Harry Debes said in a statement.
The best-of-breed/point-solution era in utility-specific applications has enabled innovative companies like SPL and CES to propel software development forward at an unprecedented pace, added Debes.
Now this era is drawing to a close because customers have found that the cost of developing and maintaining the various point-solution interfaces has become prohibitive. Utilities want vendors with a more holistic view. While CES is our first acquisition, it will not be our last.
In the current economic and industry environment, electric utilities appear focused on achieving operational efficiency and regulatory compliance. Analysts argue that one way to drive costs out of the business is through the integration and optimization of complex business processes such as revenue, customer, commodity and asset management.
As a result, we can expect to see increased investment in applications related to the utility asset lifecycle and the integration of these applications with customer information systems.
Mr Debes believes that outage management is the key to being able to offer a full customer service and that it does so by providing an expanding menu of integrated applications.
SPL will retain the CES product development facility in Minnesota, and the two companies’ product strategy and development teams will merge immediately. The development of integrations between the products is already underway. Over the next few months, the sales forces will merge, but the products will continue to be offered both separately and together.