Last week, we wrapped up Itron Utility Week (IUW) EMEA, our premier customer event that brings our community together. We were thrilled to bring the virtual event to smart city and utility leaders in EMEA for the first time – it is exciting to see IUW expand into new regions! During the two-day conference, we gathered with industry experts, colleagues and thought leaders for the opportunity to learn from one another, share fresh perspectives and open to the door to new solutions by empowering innovation and transforming challenges into opportunities.

Throughout the event, attendees had the opportunity to join breakout sessions and dig in on a range of topics spanning across two tracks: Water Management and Smart City and Utility Solutions.

The main theme of this year’s opening keynote was connecting people, insights and resources to build a more resourceful world. Tom Deitrich, Itron president and CEO, kicked off the session by delving into three macro trends that will continue to challenge our industry in the years to come. The first trend is environmental as we experience dramatically increasing rates of natural disasters around the globe, driving the need for increased resiliency. The second trend is social. With rising consumer expectations more prevalent than ever, we must meet the demand for real-time feedback and provide a level of service that is expected today. The last trend is related to infrastructure. Tom reminded us that the grid and our water systems are aging, and new regulations and mandates are driving us toward upgrading these systems and moving to carbon-free and renewable energy resources.

Tom stated that these three macro trends are why we gathered for IUW EMEA – to share information, to learn and of course to innovate together. He noted that “the enduring transformation of our industry requires innovation and innovation starts with people.”

Andrew Jones, vice president of Sales in EMEA, joined the conversation to discuss improving ROI and empowering business transformation for utilities, municipalities and cities. Andrew focused on utilities and communities in transition, as well as the factors driving the need for transformation. He emphasized how our world is changing, and we must embrace that change.

During one of our breakout sessions, Itai Dadon, global head of Smart Cities & IoT at Itron, discussed how to leverage multi-purpose networks to enable digital communities. Itai examined the challenges cities are experiencing that are forcing them to seek a fundamental transformation to not only provide services for their communities, but to do so in a meaningfully better way that drives resiliency, sustainability and resourcefulness.

One of the sessions on the final day of IUW EMEA featured Vishal Mungra, senior manager, product management at Itron; Kameel Chaabane, product manager at Itron; along with Graeme Baker, portfolio account manager at Itron. These industry experts shared insights on how to modernize a water network and the benefits of going digital to ensure personal safety while automating daily operations and efficiently identifying and reducing water losses. They honed in on advantages of smart metering and how to extract the best outcomes from smart devices. As Vishal discussed, “without data, we all struggle to make the right decisions at the right time, we have difficulty prioritizing where we should be acting first, and we have difficulty identifying what will give us the best ROI.” To wrap up the session, Graeme highlighted how smart meter reading allowed Yorkshire Water a flexible approach to choosing future meter reading communications technologies and how they’ve been able to significantly increase their meter efficiency.

Missed IUW EMEA?

If you were unable to attend this year’s event, or if you would like to review sessions, all content will be available on demand through April 16, 2021. To access the content, click here and select the REGISTER tile on our event landing page (if you have not already done so). Registration is quick, simple and free.

Marina Donovan
Vice President, Global Marketing and Public Affairs - Itron
Marina Donovan has more than 20 years of global technology marketing and public relations experience with a background in data security, networking and mobile. She joined Itron as vice president of global marketing and public affairs in January 2018. Prior to joining Itron, she was vice president of marketing for Silver Spring Networks.