Meter data management (MDM) systems, which serve as the central point of data collection for utility metering deployments, are a key component of smart grid initiatives. These systems validate and edit the data received, then aggregate, normalize, and make the data available to other IT applications via well-defined interfaces. For instance, MDM systems often interface to applications such as billing, fraud prevention, or outage management. Whereas a single smart meter deployment may include several advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) systems with different network topologies, utilities nearly always have only one MDM system, since it is a central collection point for the smart meter data.
According to a new report from Pike Research, the expansion of smart grid deployments is leading to significant growth in the market for MDM systems and related professional services. The cleantech market intelligence firm forecasts that worldwide MDM market revenue will increase from $52 million annually in 2011 to $490 million by 2018. Within this total market, Pike Research anticipates that MDM software will represent 65% of the total, and MDM-related professional services will account for 35%.
“Meter data management systems are at an inflection point,” says senior analyst Bob Lockhart. “Historically, MDM systems collected meter reading data from automated metering systems to create accurate bills with little manual intervention. Now, MDM systems have emerged as a centerpiece of the AMI environment, a key component of the smart grid.”
Lockhart adds that, to address this evolving opportunity, vendors with experience in operations or customer care are now entering the MDM market. His analysis indicates that the new requirements are radically different from traditional MDM and require radically different approaches to building and delivering next-generation MDM systems. The new competitive landscape includes specialist MDM vendors such as eMeter, EnergyICT, Ecologic Analytics, and Aclara; meter manufacturers that have their own MDM suites such as Itron; real-time data and event vendors such as OSIsoft; and enterprise resource planning (ERP) vendors such as SAP and Oracle.
Pike Research’s report, Meter Data Management, analyzes the evolving market for MDM systems, including an assessment of 24 different MDM application areas and three tiers of service. The study examines the state of the market, discusses business cases and criteria for utility decision-making, and identifies technology issues faced by the industry. Detailed profiles are provided for key industry players, along with granular market forecasts, segmented by service tier and world region, extending through 2018.