Vattenfall to automate energy trading

The utility continues to invest in the Netherlands with the acquisition of a startup that can provide savings and greater flexibility for power customers.

Photo: Elisabeth Redlig/Vattenfall

In an energy system increasing powered by intermittent electricity, rapid flexibility is becoming more and more crucial – both for a the large, power thirsty industrial consumers aiming to buy cheap and for owners of solar, wind and energy storage facilities seeking to maximize earnings.

This is the mechanism in play behind the purchase of Dutch Senfal, which Vattenfall announced Tuesday. Senfal is a startup employing 22 personnel and has developed a fully automated trading system that buys and sells on short-term energy markets. Such trading can take place both in the form of regular energy trading as well as via demand response, which typically involves industrial players being paid to temporarily shift some of their power consumption to assist grid balancing.

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