‘Too cautious, too many rules, too slow on data’: Electralink’s Stuart Lacey calls for change in the energy industry

The energy industry has to be ready to fail, says  Electralink chief executive Stuart Lacey. In a wide-ranging  interview with New Power, he said innovation doesn’t come from a process of building consensus, it comes from lots of trying and failing: “Some people that we speak to will go bust, but that’s the nature of the innovation process: try, fail, try, fail”.

Electralink was one of a handful of ‘central bodies’ set up at the time of energy privatisation to carry out services required by the new industry. In Electralink’s case, that meant the data transfer service (DTS), managing many of the key data flows across the industry – more complicated than it might appear, as they are up to 30 data flows in a change of supplier between parties as diverse as the meter owner, network and supplier.

More from the interview: 

Lacey says a lot of ‘use cases’ for industry data, “frankly should have been done years ago and they have been kicked down the road”. That includes, “ a long, long programme of digitising network assets.” 

On industry rules:  “There are too many codes. It is not just a question of banging them together, because that will give you three horrendously complicated codes.” “The fundamental is that underpinning it all is the customers have a right to their data and customers give permission to an organisation to use their data.” 


Download the full interview

New Power Report 126 August 2019 Electralink