Feb 10, 2010 14:57 ET
Unshackling the Public Utility Industry From Equipment Manufacturers; Joint Venture Between Oregon-Based FirstPoint Energy Corporation and Bogota, Colombia-Based PrimeStone
PORTLAND, OR--(Marketwire - February 10, 2010) - Convergent Industrial Holdings, Inc.
(Convergent), its U.S.-based family of companies including FirstPoint
Energy Corporation N.A. (FirstPoint) and Bogota, Colombia-based PrimeStone
S.A. (PrimeStone), announced today a joint venture, FirstPoint-PrimeStone
(JV), to meet the increasing demands by utilities companies needing an
alternative to the meter manufacturers' demanding a ransom.
Brian Bishop, the interim President of the JV, explained that he was
excited to take leadership, unshackling the utilities companies from both
the meter manufacturers and the meter data management software designers.
Bishop explained that it's an industry where the utilities generally have
no choice but to upgrade the meters due to expiring software, lack of
maintenance and manufacturers' planned support contract expirations, but
further explained that by upgrading any of the components, the older meters
become unsupported because the new versions of software, data translators
and data acquisition hardware most often don't support older equipment. He
said it's a classic game of planned obsolescence of perfectly good
technology that the consumers ultimately pay for.
"Convergent, the subsidiaries of which span the spectrum -- FirstPoint of
Oregon, a meter data management, validation and billing services company;
Cipher Systems of Oregon, an Original Equipment Manufacturer with products
enabling any metering device to be a Smart Meter, such as meter-agnostic
data acquisition components, multipoint-multipath high-power ZigBee
transceivers and controls for equipment such as water-heaters; Aries
Engineering of Oregon, a controls systems manufacturer, specializing in
environmental controls design and manufacturing servicing the Demand
Control market with products such as GoldHeat; and FG&S of Los Angeles,
serving as the international sourcing and custom logistics needs managing
distribution contracts -- are all vital components in delivering
best-of-breed, cost-effective, legacy and future-compatible solutions,"
said Ken Millard, President of Cipher.
"PrimeStone, with its universal data translation and data acquisition
components, has been a viable alternative to current technologies such as
MV90, Meridien and others," said Juan Ibanez, President and founder.
Ibanez explained that the synergy and complimentary products of the JV
places PrimeStone and FirstPoint as the front runners in the utility
industry at the very least, if not the singular alternative. Ibanez added,
"Our technology leaves a considerable gap between the JV and the rest of
the market solutions, especially because the solutions are hardware and
software-agnostic. In short, it simply plays well with others!" PrimeStone
provides mission-critical solutions in the AMR/AMI market
Global Private Funding Inc. of Beverly Hills, CA, an equity-based lender
underwriting the JV, is a hands-on participant, providing management
oversight, implementation of best practices, financial and transactional
validation and revenue financing. John Jay Esq., Executive Managing
Director of Global, explained how the market research supporting this JV
clearly demonstrates a demand by the utilities for a means to break away
from the equipment manufacturer's stronghold. The combined capabilities of
the JV deliver business rules-based validation, estimation, and editing
(VEE) of revenue data and exports-verified revenue data to external
systems, such as billing systems, outage management systems, customer
information systems, etc. "With over 45 years of combined experience
servicing clients in the utility market, PrimeStone and FirstPoint are two
very well-positioned and respected leaders, joining to create an even more
stable venture, at a time when the market is rampant with mergers and
acquisitions just to stay alive," commented Dr. Sam Francis Senev, Chairman
and CEO of Global.
"As soon as the word leaked, we were deluged with inquiries from
utilities," said Penni Carmin, Customer Service Manager at FirstPoint.
For updates relating to the Joint Venture, please visit
888-422-8484 ext: 5181