FAQs: Clients

EirGrid and System Operator for Northern Ireland (SONI) – SEM Establishment Programme

eirgridSoni EirGrid and SONI are the electricity transmission system operators (TSOs) for the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland respectively, and jointly operate the Single Electricity Market (SEM) for the island of Ireland.Market Reform provided a wide range of services to EirGrid’s and SONI’s SEM Establishment Programme, from inception to completion, including assistance with:

  • planning and structuring of the programme
  • programme and project management
  • business planning and organisation design advice
  • business process and procedure definition
  • development, and change management, of specifications for the market systems
  • selection of the systems Prime Contractor and ongoing oversight of their implementation and testing activities
  • advice on market design and market rules
  • certification of the market optimisation software
  • conduct of market simulation activities
  • planning, preparation and delivery of training
  • planning and coordination of market readiness and operational cutover activities, including the Market Trial
  • operational support

The programme addressed a number of unique complexities, including two currencies, two legal jurisdictions, two client sites and project activities spread across five locations in four countries. The SEM was delivered, on-time and on-budget, on 1st November 2007.

Market Reform has continued to advise EirGrid, SONI and their SEM Operator organisation (SEM-O) on a range of initiatives, including the Day 1+ market release, harmonisation of ancillary services, business process definition, market systems development plan, market solver change management, unit commitment recertification and the implementation of intra-day trading.

New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) – Strategic Development Initiatives

NYME NYMEX (now part of CME Group) is the world’s largest derivatives market and clearing house for energy. Market Reform and its individuals have worked with NYMEX on a number of strategic initiatives, including:

eNYMEX Establishment

eNYMEX was NYMEX’s initiative to provide internet-based trading and financial clearing of a wide-range of energy derivatives, including its extremely successful initiative to clear off-exchange/OTC trades (now known as Clearport).

Key Market Reform individuals were responsible for development of the business plan for the eNYMEX initiative, and provided subsequent advice on project management, organisation design, financial modelling, definition of business processes and system requirements, product development, and training.

Strategic Planning

Led a strategic initiative to define and articulate NYMEX’s growth strategy, and evaluate selected strategic initiatives, as a prelude to its initial public offering later in 2006.

Confidential Strategic Review Project

Conducted a review for NYMEX’s President and Board of Directors of a strategic overseas opportunity the exchange was pursuing.

Spot Market Clearing

The aim of Spot Market Clearing is to provide financial clearing for electricity spot markets, replacing the crude credit risk processes used by many with the robust processes of an accredited clearing house.  Work undertaken by the project included definition of the Spot Market Clearing concept and business plan, development of the process model, and marketing of the concept to key stakeholders.

Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) – Short-Term Trading Market (STTM) Establishment

AEMO AEMO is the electricity and gas market operator for much of Australia. Market Reform was engaged to advise and assist AEMO with the establishment of the Short-Term Trading Market (STTM) – a natural gas cash market with trading hubs based around major demand points at Sydney, Adelaide and (subsequently) Brisbane. Key areas in which Market Reform provided assistance included:

  • Initial planning and structuring of the project.
  • Project management of this complex, multi-disciplinary effort, involving personnel from AEMO, Market Reform, IT contractors, legal advisors and vendors
  • Detailed market design
  • Definition of market rules and procedures
  • Market systems analysis and design
  • Certification of the market software
  • Market readiness, including planning, preparation and delivery of training and the market trial.
  • Establishment of capabilities within AEMO to operate the STTM.

More recently, Market Reform has assisted AEMO with the investigation and design of a gas trading hub, and market arrangements, based around a major supply point.

Press Article: Gas trading hub launched

PJM Interconnection – Multiple Initiatives

PJM PJM is the electricity system operator for the mid-Atlantic region of the US and parts of the Midwest, and operator of the world’s largest electricity spot market. Market Reform has conducted a number of initiatives for PJM, including:

Settlement Formulation Review

Market Reform was engaged to conduct a review of the specification/formulation of PJM’s market settlement system against the provisions of its tariff and operating agreement (i.e. market rules), identify issues and recommend remedial measures.

Credit and Clearing Analysis

Following some significant financial defaults by participants in its markets, PJM engaged Market Reform to provide advice concerning how it could improve its management of credit risk. A benchmarking study of credit risk management practices in a range of spot electricity and other markets was also conducted.

Comparative Commodity Market Analysis

Market Reform analyzed a range of existing forward markets in commodities and securities, in aid of PJM’s efforts to examine how it could do more to encourage and facilitate robust forward market activity in electricity.

Forward Energy Reserve Market

Market Reform investigated the design, structure and mechanics of a proposed ‘Forward Energy Reserve Market’ – a call option market aimed at encouraging greater demand-side participation./td>

Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) – Strategy and Organisation Assessment

Ercot ERCOT is the electricity system operator and wholesale spot market operator for Texas. It also operates the market infrastructure to support retail competition in Texas, and the registry for renewable electricity certificates.
Market Reform was appointed by ERCOT to conduct an assessment of its strategy and organisation. This work included changes to the company charter, evaluation of capabilities and services, analysis of staffing requirements, and making recommendations concerning staffing, organisation structure, governance, strategic planning process, people strategy and fee structure.Separately, Market Reform performed an expert review of the protocols for ERCOT’s Texas Nodal market, and provided assistance to ERCOT with readiness for nodal market operations.

OpenLink Financial – Project Management

OpenLink OpenLink is one of the world’s premier providers of commodity trading software. Market Reform has provided system implementation and project management services to OpenLink, in the delivery of trading and downstream processing capabilities for major North American banks and large public utilities.

Coliban Water – Water Pricing and Optimisation

Coliban Market Reform was engaged by Coliban Water to develop an economically-oriented optimisation process based on the utility’s Operating Plan (OP) process. The aim of this process is to support the efficient operation of the water supply system, produce more accurate scarcity prices, and ultimately to support economically efficient and operationally feasible water trading. A deterministic (no uncertainty) water scheduling/pricing model, incorporating the most important operational interactions and constraints on the physical water supply system was developed. This model has the potential to be extended to a more sophisticated stochastic model, that could determine decisions and prices which account for future uncertainty.

SP AusNet – AMI Program Review

SPAusnet The State Government of Victoria has mandated the rollout of Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) – including remotely-read interval meters, communications infrastructure and data collection systems – to all premises in Victoria. SP AusNet, one of the three electricity distribution companies responsible for this rollout, engaged Market Reform to conduct a ‘health check’ of its AMI Program, to identify and examine key gaps and points of concern, make recommendations for remediation/mitigation, and form an assessment concerning the likelihood of the program meeting its delivery obligations. This review, reporting to the CEO, was conducted in an accelerated timeframe, utilising a senior team of experienced consultants, with international experience in advanced metering and market infrastructure establishment programs.