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    MacTel helps Horizon Power with 'cleaner' service push


    March 16, 2023 - Sasha Karen

     

      Macquarie Telecom has inked a deal to move WA-based electricity provider Horizon Power from an on-premises data centres to a private cloud and cut down on its data centre footprint in order to provide "cleaner" services.

      Horizon provides electricity to more than 44,000 customers spread out across 2.6 million square kilometres in Western Australia.

      Macquarie, through its Telecom and Cloud Services branches, was chosen for its ability to manage Horizon’s operational technology (OT) and industrial control systems (ICS) environment, as well as its sovereignty and security credentials.

      “Power is essential to Australia’s backbone and it’s never been more important to handle it in a way that balances sustainability, reliability and affordability,” said Macquarie Telecom WA state manager Aaron Tighe.

      The provider’s reasoning behind the moves were due a desire to provide cleaner services and the state government’s carbon emissions reduction goal of 80 per cent by 2030, according to Jeff Campbell, senior manager of technology at Horizon.

      “To achieve the target, we are looking at how to build more digital and IoT- [internet of things] related services and remove the cost and complexity of managing servers, server clusters, storage devices and backup processes,” Campbell said.

      “This will ultimately allow us to reduce our data centre footprint and corresponding energy consumption.”

      The partnership between the companies is also expected to improve efficiency at Horizon, enabling the “rapid” deployment of applications.

      “Straight out of the box, Macquarie showed a deep understanding of what we were trying to achieve and how they could work with us to execute our goals,” Campbell added.

      “We’re introducing technologies that provide condition-based monitoring, such as light detection and ranging (LiDAR) drones and IoT sensors. This allows us to capture and crunch data so we can make assets more efficient.

      “For instance, we can send field staff only to the assets requiring maintenance or get detailed data to provide better services and products for customers in specific areas.”

      In the group's latest half-year result, which released last month, its traditional telecommunications business flatlined, with revenue dropping 1 per cent to $59.8 million.

      Meanwhile, revenue in its combined cloud services and government and data centre services soared, rising by 19 per cent to $59.8 million and 51 per cent to $31.7 million, respectively.

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