Knoxville startup Fiveworx licenses ORNL energy analysis tool

June 4, 2014
Knoxville-based Fiveworx has licensed an Oak Ridge National Laboratory technology called CoNNECT that will help consumers reduce their utility bills by analyzing their home energy usage. CoNNECT inventors (from left) Olufemi Omitaomu and Budhendra Bhaduri talk with Fiveworx CEO Patrick Hunt. Credit: Jason Richards, ORNL

Knoxville-based Fiveworx has licensed an Oak Ridge National Laboratory technology that will help consumers reduce their utility bills by analyzing their home energy usage.

The ORNL , called Citizen Engagement for Energy Efficient Communities (CoNNECT), enables utility customers to easily monitor their in a user-friendly web-based platform. Fiveworx will apply the CoNNECT tool toward its mission to help utilities increase participation in their programs while reducing their marketing costs.

"Our goal is to motivate consumers to do five or more things to save money on their ," said Fiveworx CEO Patrick Hunt. "By combining principles of behavioral economics, consumer segmentation, big data, and predictive analytics, we help utilities give their customers a truly personalized energy savings plan that they'll embrace and use to adopt energy efficient measures and behaviors."

Fiveworx will use CoNNECT to power its business intelligence platform, allowing utility program administrators and business analysts to make better decisions about resource allocation and marketing of energy efficiency, demand-side management, and demand response programs. Additionally, Fiveworx will use the technology to enhance its existing customer-facing application to include new features such as peer comparisons and to integrate data from CoNNECT into its marketing automation platform.

"The CoNNECT technology will allow us to incorporate all sorts of data—including actual consumption data and information about homes and weather—into our recommendations to deliver the most meaningful and relevant list of energy-saving actions possible. The more meaningful and relevant, the more personalized a list of recommendations is, the more likely customers are to act," Hunt said.

The CoNNECT technology also allows consumers to benchmark their energy consumption against their peers and determine whether their usage is above or below average.

"This technology could become a killer app for home management, and we are proud to have developed it at ORNL," said Olufemi Omitaomu of the lab's Geographic Information Science & Technology group.

The development of CoNNECT was supported by ORNL's Technology Innovation Program and Laboratory Directed Research and Development funding.

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