Scots founder of peer-to-peer energy provider Piclo moves into overseas markets

James Johnston
James Johnston

Piclo® – the peer-to-peer energy marketplace for UK business customers set up in London by expat Scot James Johnston – is now expanding into overseas markets.

Prior to founding the Open Utility parent company as chief executive, Johnston – who gained a BEng and MSc in mechanical engineering at Strathclyde University – secured funding from, among other investors, Ian Marchant, former chief executive of SSE.

Piclo is currently underpinning Good Energy’s Selectricity offering for UK businesses, allowing them to purchase their power from run of river hydro in the west Highlands and wind turbines in the hills of Aberdeenshire.

Piclo trials are planned in multiple EU countries in the coming months and the company is actively recruiting partners globally.

Johnston said: “All across the world, decentralised solar, wind and hydro generators are selling their excess electricity onto the local distribution grid. However, traditional centralised energy markets are complex, opaque and inefficient.

“Open Utility’s Piclo® is a new kind of marketplace that enables households and businesses to transact peer-to-peer with local generators: providing transparency, choice and efficient local balancing.

“Piclo® is delivered in partnership with licensed energy suppliers and transforms how they interact with their customers.

“Instead of launching a single tariff for the whole country, suppliers can let individual customers choose which generators to buy from: for example a local wind turbine or even their neighbour’s solar panels.”

The Piclo® service has been designed to be intuitive and simple. Customers only need to select a few high level preferences and the service automatically matches them with the nearest relevant generators.

Piclo® is country and regulation agnostic and can integrate with a wide range of metering data systems and languages.

14 Aug 2018

Pixie Energy

Pixie logo Pixie Energy is an incubator and a facilitator of strategic research and project work, focusing on energy regulation, policy and markets at the local and national level. Find out more about Pixie Energy here.

Local Energy Matters: Scotland

Local Energy Matters: Scotland is a free-to-download brochure with a focus on energy tariffs in the two Scottish electricity distribution regions, as well news on local energy and low-carbon schemes.

Previous editions can be download here.

Scottish energy market overview

You can read an overview of the Scottish energy market here.

Scottish Government energy feed