Since its first staging in 2015, the Meralco Technology and Innovation Summit (MTECH) has provided a venue for its employees and industry stakeholders to learn and experience new technologies relevant to utilities, and more importantly, let them into Meralco’s vision of providing solutions to enable a better energy future for its customers.
This year, MTECH 2018 themed “A New Wave of Disruption” provided another update on disruptive technologies showcased in last year’s summit, while discussing new ones that are fast becoming essential and critical in enabling a more secure, efficient and sustainable energy future.
MTECH 2018 participants catched up on strategic technologies such as Blockchain, IoT, Edge Computing, Virtual Reality, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence, which have developed at a staggering rate over the past year, while learning a new set of digital disruptors.
Featuring exhibits, pocket sessions, and a culminating forum, the annual tech summit ran from November 19 to 21, 2018 at the Meralco Center, the power utility’s headquarters in Pasig City. It brought together over 2,000 participants from the electric distribution industry, business and corporate partners, government and academe, media representatives, and leading experts both in Information Technology and Operational Technology.
On the first day, the summit opened the exhibit at the Lopez Building Lobby. The technology showcase throughout the three-day summit equipped participants with a better understanding and appreciation of the power industry by bringing together different technology vendors from around the world to present their latest products and services.
Aside from Meralco and its subsidiaries, namely, Customer Frontline Solutions, Radius and MServ, other MTECH 2018 exhibitors included: Nokia, Delnet, Trends, Schneider Electric, Pazifik Power Inc., Nuvve, NTT Data, Microsoft, Indra, Dimension Data, Amazon Web Services (AWS), SAP, Vobling, VMWare, Cisco-Fujitsu, CapGemini, Itron, NEC-Juniper, OneCommerce, Teltrends, Intellismart, Intel-Calbr8, and Voyager.
MTECH 2018 also held a cyber security skills competition dubbed FORGE 2018 during the first two days of the summit. It provided participants with hands-on experience of cyber-attacks based on real business scenarios.
Pocket sessions were held as well at the Mini Theatre featuring speakers from local and globally-renowned tech firms such as AWS, SAP, UIPath, Nokia, NTT Data, VMWare, Pazifik Power Inc., CharIn, Nuvve, and Quiddity. Topics ranged from Engaging Voice Experience, Digitized HR, Intelligent Process Automation, New business models and Adaptive Communications, Artificial Intelligence trends, Software-defined Networking and Security, RMU automation, developments on Electric Vehicle and Charging infrastructure, and Design Sprint.
The annual tech forum also brought in senior high school and engineering students for the Young Engineers and Scientists (YES) Summit held on the event’s second day. This student congregation familiarized students with the new technologies and competencies of the future engineer and utility worker, as they listened to various presentations and toured the exhibits.
The summit culminated with the MTECH Forum led by Meralco chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan and Meralco president & chief executive officer Oscar S. Reyes. The following Meralco executives, meanwhile, gave presentations that delved into developments on disruptive technologies and their roles in Meralco’s continuing digital transformation journey: Meralco Chief Technology Advisor Gavin D. Barfield, Meralco Head of Customer Retail Services & Corporate Communication Alfredo S. Panlilio, Meralco Head of Networks Ronnie L. Aperocho, Meralco Head of Human Resources and Corporate Services Edgardo V. Carasig, and Meralco Head of Strategy and Business Development Office Raymund B. Ravelo.
Also joining the Meralco executives at the MTECH Forum are global technology experts who shared the latest trends or game-changing breakthroughs in technology and how they can be adopted into the energy industry to deliver operational efficiencies and value-adding services. They were Capgemini Head of Energy and Utilities Perry Stoneman; Cisco Vice President of Architectures (Asia Pacific & Japan) Vish Iyer; Gartner Vice President & Executive Partner for Southeast Asia Jonathan Krause; and AWS Head APAC Big Data Analytics & AI & ML Segment Babar Jan-Haleem.