The development of a competitive market within the English suppliers of water and waste water retail services was set out by Water Act 2014. On the back of experience in the development of competitive markets, Market Operator Services Limited has selected CGI and Bridgeall to develop and implement the technical side of the new market. CGI will provide a central market operating system that runs on its secure cloud service, while Bridgeall will develop the sub-system that calculates the primary charges for water and waste water services.
The UK Government established the Water Act 2014 to provide a guiding framework for the development of a market within the suppliers of water and waste water retail services. The act will allow 1.2 million businesses and other non-household customers primarily located in England with a choice of supplier. The competitive market is set to be operational by April 2017 and is being developed by three organisations: Defra, Ofwat and Market Operator Services Limited (MOSL).
MOSL was created to deliver the operational capabilities to support the creation of the market, and is charged with developing and implementing the systems and processes that are to enable customers to switch between suppliers.
The deal between consulting firm CGI and MOSL will see CGI’s central market system deployed by MOSL in its development of a central market operating system (CMOS) to run the competitive market system. The CMOS will provide a platform through which retailers and wholesalers can interact. The CMOS will be hosted and operated on CGI’s secure commercial cloud. The English water market instantiation of the solution will be specifically configured to meet the demands of the Market Architecture Plan (MAP) developed for the scheme.
As part of the contract, CGI partners with technology consultancy provider Bridgeall. Both parties will bring their experience developing the competitive water market that opened in Scotland in 2008 to their new relationship. Bridgeall in particular will leverage its expertise in the development of a sub-system that calculates the primary charges for water and waste water services, passing them on to the relevant wholesalers and retailers.
“This is a very exciting time for the water industry,” explains Tara McGeehan, Vice-President, Energy & Utilities for CGI in the UK. “Competition for non-household customers will create new business opportunities for many operators. At the same time, water market competition will help to drive innovation, as well as offer customers improved service at lower cost.” Commenting on the partnership, she adds: “We are delighted to be working with MOSL to deliver its new central market operating system. We have a very tight timescale to design, build and implement the system, but by working in partnership with all the key stakeholders and leveraging our central market systems experience, we will develop a system that will make competition work for the water industry.”
Stephen Beer, Managing Director of Bridgeall, comments: “Bridgeall’s experience in the design, development and operation of central systems in the Scottish water market will be valuable in addressing the challenges faced by MOSL in the UK. We are uniquely positioned to make a very significant contribution to the success of the Core Market Operator System for the English market.”