Quinton Fisher joins Total Utilities

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Quinton Fisher joins Total Utilities

Quinton Fisher joins Total Utilities

The team at Total Utilities are very excited to have Quinton Fisher join us as our Auckland Regional Sales Manager.  Quinton has recently moved to New Zealand from South Africa with his wife and two daughters. When looking at countries to immigrate to, New Zealand, Canada and the U.K made his shortlist.  We’re thrilled that New Zealand was their first choice, and we hope that it won't take long for his family to feel at home here. Total Utilities will do all we can to make the transition smooth for the Fisher family. A real people person Quinton brings with him a wealth of experience in utilities and a passion for sales. A real people person, Quinton is all about building and maintaining meaningful long-term relationships with both his clients and his colleagues which makes him the ideal candidate for heading Auckland regional sales. 2020 marks Quinton’s twelfth year in utilities Quinton owned and has now sold a successful business in South Africa, Thinktility, a company who has helped large brands, like Kellogg’s company of South Africa, experience the benefits of reduced tariffs, smart metering and energy-efficient solutions.  Drawn to Total Utilities culture and vision For Quinton, the culture and vision of Total Utilities was a perfect fit. He especially appreciates the feel of camaraderie and togetherness and that it is a place where ideas and knowledge are shared freely. He notes that it doesn’t matter where the suggestion comes from, whether it’s an employee’s idea or a director's, if the initiative has merit then the team at Total Utilities will do their best to explore its feasibility and implement it. Sustainability and renewable energy are important  Total Utilities cares about future-proofing New Zealand businesses, by helping them think about how their utility choices not only impact their bottom line but people and the planet too.  Quinton's passions align with our vision, as he cares about sustainability, identifying and using alternative energy sources, and providing smart and efficient energy solutions backed by clever, cutting edge analysis and insights.  A skilled negotiator with a strong financial and operations background Quinton loves helping people, building relationships and understanding how businesses operate. His skills lie in sales, marketing, negotiating favourable contracts with preferred suppliers, and he brings with him a financial, analytical and technical background.  What's more, he also thrives on exceeding client's expectations, helping them solve complex issues and achieve meaningful outcomes. His why? Reducing costs for businesses, empowering them to understand the financial impact of their utilities' usage, and what level of power they are consuming, with the aim to make their business more streamlined, save money, and increase profitability and sustainability. Making the most of New Zealand's outdoor lifestyle Quinton visited New Zealand in September 2019 to see if it could be a country where his family could lay down roots. The tranquillity and natural beauty remind him of the town where he grew up. Since moving to West Auckland, Quinton has found the transition relatively painless, and now he has time to make the most of our outdoor lifestyle. In his free time, he enjoys swimming in the ocean, mountain biking, fishing, golfing and hiking. A dynamic addition to our team We respect Quinton’s ambition and initiative. When he decided that New Zealand was a place he’d happily immigrate to, he arranged to have a meeting with our managing director, Richard Gardiner and the rest as they say is history.  Serving the Supercity Quinton will be helping new clients around the supercity discover better, more efficient and sustainable ways to manage their energy consumption.  Total Utilities warmly welcomes Quinton to our team. We know that he will take care of you, our clients, and provide you with excellent, insightful service. 

Solar, call now and get a free set of steak knives

Solar, call now and get a free set of steak knives

Making solar part of your business's energy mix has never been more appealing. But risk and opportunity balances between an optimised design and types of PPAs. While there's heat in the market, there are incentives - but don't unthinkingly sign away your business for a free set of steak knives! Or solar panels, for that matter. According to the Electricity Authority, New Zealand's solar energy generation capacity increased to just under 115MW in 2019. Putting this into perspective, 115MW of installed capacity is similar to one of Contact or Mercury's Geothermal stations. As a percentage, this equates to around 1.2% of total operating generation capacity in New Zealand. Source: Electricity Authority Lowering costs for installed solar The installed cost of solar has dropped by around 75% since 2009 toan average of around $2.20 per watt. With large commercial energy rates continuing to rise, the return on investment starts to become more realistic for business customers considering solar. Location is more important than just sunshine hours and roof direction With 29 distribution networks in NZ, there are a variety of charging structures for time of use electricity customers. Some networks prefer to charge more for demand and capacity than on the total volume of energy consumed. Understanding how these charges are calculated is an important consideration for the ROI of solar. For example, a network price structure that favours variable charges will potentially have a far greater ROI than a price structure that favours peak demand. Depending on the distribution network, peak demand charges can equate to a significant portion of your total electricity costs. Installing solar alone does not necessarily impact peak demands to any large degree. However as battery storage becomes more economic, this will assist customers smooth their load and reduce demand based charges. Total Utilities can help to model and evaluate your best options with a solar viability review. What are Power Purchase Agreements (PPA's)? For no money down, you too could have a solar array. Just be sure to check the fine print. And pick up your steak knives! Power Purchase Agreements are a great way for solar companies to sell solar arrays to customers as they don't require a customer to come up with the CAPEX costs associated with the array. There are typically two forms of PPA's that are common in NZ. One involves the solar company installing a meter on the array that is installed and then billing you for the energy you consume from the array at an agreed price. You can still engage with the market and import energy from a standard retailer as required. An agreement would need to be struck with your retailer for any exported energy, depending on the solar PPA, the solar company may get all the financial benefit from exported energy. The other type is where the solar company becomes your retailer as well and manages both the import and export of power. Sometimes the solar arrays are oversized so that the solar company can charge you for what you consume from the array and then make money selling additional energy back to the market. This can all be used to pay off the cost of the array and there can be lease to own options or buy-out clauses after a minimum term. In both cases, there are minimum terms from anywhere between 7 to over 20 years. Where the length of contract, maintenance and replacement clauses become important as inverters can need replacing after 10-15 years and panels at 20-25 years. Is Solar right for my enterprise? The first question I would be asking is: What is the comparison between owning the array outright and the associated financing costs with benefits from the array going directly to OPEX costs from day 1 versus the costs and risks associated with a power purchase agreement? You could also be asking how your energy choices impact your sustainability goals and brand perception. Total Utilities has recently completed three large scale viability studiesof 42kW, 96kW, 146kW, 286kW and 350kW solar arrays for commercial facilities and can assist you in determining the best solution that meets your specific requirements. Solar companies are often constrained by the supplier of their solar products for what and how they deliver an array. Getting an independent solar viability review by Total Utilities can increase the efficiency and output of an array to ensure full value for money if you make solar part of your energy mix.

Big risks in avoiding corporate sustainability

Your corporate sustainability targets might be in for a shock! Prior to Christmas, the Government announced a raft of proposed changes to the emissions trading scheme (ETS) to rapidly decarbonise the economy. This included lifting the ETS price cap from $25/tonne to $50/tonne and creating a market floor of $20/tonne. If we take natural gas as an example, where at $25/tonne the ETS is priced at $1.37, at the market cap of $50/tonne this would increase the cost of the ETS to end users by $1.37/GJ (0.49c/kWh). With current raw gas pricing hovering around $9/GJ for large industrial users this could make raw gas plus ETS $11.74/GJ (4.23c/kWh). We spend a lot of time looking at commercial electricity and energy management and that's really something to notice! If your corporate sustainability journey does not include electricity or energy efficiency milestones, now is the time. In addition to this, a ban on new coal-fired boilers for low and medium temperature heating has been mooted. With all coal boilers used for low temperature activities to be phased out by 2030. Coal boilers would still be allowed for high temperatures of above 300 degrees celsius. The Interim Climate Commission estimates that switching coal boilers away to electricity or biomass at scale becomes economic when ETS costs are in the range of $60-$120/tonne. Now more than ever businesses need to start planning their sustainability journey. At Total Utilities we are here to help. The following was originally posted on the Centrica Business Solutions website and is reprinted with permission. With environmental and economic sustainability at the heart of the corporate agenda, organizations face a range of risks if they fail to make progress All organizations must pay close attention to risk. From financial viability to cyber attacks, it’s vital to understand and prepare for the forces that can disrupt the market and derail long-term sustainability – so businesses can survive in a fast-changing world. Of all the risks that could affect a business’s long-term future, climate change is becoming one of the most urgent and complex. The United Nations warns that changing climate is disrupting national economies – and that accelerated action is needed to reduce emissions. I want to hear about how we are going to stop the increase in emissions by 2020, and dramatically reduce emissions to reach net-zero emissions by mid-century António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General Many organizations are already exploring what they can do to make a difference. They know that significant organizational, reputational and financial benefits can be gained by improving their environmental credentials. That said, our Distributed Energy Future Trends report found most businesses are investing in initiatives that we’d consider to be ‘low-hanging fruit’. Few organizations are implementing the most sophisticated technological innovations that could really accelerate their journey to net zero, such as smart energy management and on-site generation. In fact, just 18% of organizations see energy as an asset to be managed, in order to generate competitive advantage. It’s important that organizations consider the strategic benefits of implementing the latest sustainable energy innovations. But perhaps even more importantly, they also need to recognize the risks they face if they don’t implement these innovations. Here are a few of the top concerns: Energy security As the world moves to low-carbon energy sources, making sure that you have continuity of supply is vital. Business leaders acknowledge the importance of energy resilience, which is why they rank energy security as being a top-three risk to their operations. It’s important to have a detailed energy strategy, one that puts targets around energy resilience. Currently, only half of businesses that we’d consider to be ‘sustainable’ have an energy strategy that details how they will become a low-carbon organization. With other businesses, the figure falls to just 24%. Clearly, there is scope for businesses to push ahead in this area. Having a plan is just the first step, though. It’s also important to consider implementing sustainable energy innovations, which can help to reduce reliance on the grid and provide additional security in the event of a power failure. Without harnessing the latest innovations, organizations may not be safeguarding themselves as fully as they could against the catastrophic consequences of power loss. Innovation is good for business In today’s economy, no company can afford to stand still. It’s important to keep moving forward and improve the products and services you deliver to your customers. Continuous innovation is good for business and often creates new opportunities that can enhance the way your business operates. This is certainly true of sustainable energy innovations. From artificial intelligence to digitalized energy management solutions – low-carbon technologies can create new opportunities for businesses to monetize their power assets and improve their brand reputation. What’s more, organizations that look at their strategy anew and consider how they can join their energy technologies together can maximize their commercial benefits and return on investment. It’s clear that organizations who embrace sustainable energy innovations can gain competitive advantage – and those businesses that fail to harness these new opportunities risk being left behind. Preparing for a more digital world Organizations that aggressively pursue digitalization are expected to grow the most in the next five years. But companies that are truly future-focused don’t just introduce new digital platforms and technologies on a whim – they consider their wider implications, including the energy requirements of each digitalization initiative. In our transformed world, new strategies are required to understand precisely where, how and when energy is being used across your organization. By monitoring, managing and aggregating all available energy assets, including energy demand and usage, organizations can ensure they generate and consume power in the most efficient way. The latest sustainable energy innovations can support this initiative by providing organizations with the insight they need to make more intelligent decisions about their energy strategy in a digital world. But organizations that don’t embrace these innovations may lack these insights and could run the risk of wasting energy and money. And this may snowball, as more and more digital technologies are embraced. Futureproofing your operations Businesses that clearly define their energy strategy and invest in the latest sustainable energy innovations will find themselves in the best position to meet their environmental targets, gain competitive advantage, and futureproof their operations. Companies that do not embrace the latest energy technologies may find themselves at a disadvantage in a competitive market. With businesses maturing at different paces, it will take strategic planning to accelerate environmental and sustainability ambitions. Contact Total Utilities to see how we can help you invest in sustainable energy innovations that will solve business challenges and deliver tangible results.

Finalist - Microsoft New Zealand Partner Awards

Total Utilities is proud to have been nominated as a finalist in the 12th annual Microsoft New Zealand Partner Awards. These awards reveal the capability and influence that Microsoft Partners have in empowering customers to create real change and value. As a business we have been known for a number of years for vendor-independent business consulting which enables our customers to make informed and contestable decisions in relation to their migration to Cloud computing. Once the customer embarks on that journey it is crucially important to have the right governance in place to control costs and realise the value promised in the original business case. Total Utilities has developed analytics that ensure our clients gain the value from their cloud environments and provide insights to help save money. “Being finalists for the 2019 Microsoft Partner ‘Optimising Operations Award’ is a significant milestone for Total Utilities as it means we are now also gaining recognition for our independent, innovative and inexpensive Cloud FinOps service which provides that financial governance.” – Kelvin Sargeant

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