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City of Starkville, Mississippi, Selects Elster AMI Solution

RALEIGH, N.C., Oct. 21, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Elster Solutions announces that the City of Starkville, Mississippi, has selected the company's award-winning EnergyAxis® Automated Metering Infrastructure (AMI) solution. Starkville Electric Department (SED) and Starkville Public Works (SPW) received unanimous approval from city officials in August for the deployment of Elster technology and services. According to Terry Kemp, SED General Manager, the move to a smart grid platform is not expected to increase either utility's rates.

Leveraging the new system's meters, citizens will be able to track their daily and average water and electricity usage and better manage their energy consumption. The new system will also provide the city with quicker service responses, increased customer engagement, faster service restoration, increased operational efficiency, real-time monitoring and future adaptability to rate structures, Kemp said.

Hailed as a significant, watershed improvement to infrastructure capabilities by Mayor Parker Wiseman, the new smart grid solution will replace Starkville's manual meter reading system with an advanced, multi-utility metering and communications infrastructure.

Kemp said SED and SPW targeted Elster because the company fit the city's needs, instead of the city adjusting its needs to fit what the company offers. The deployment will include 12,500+ REX2 and A3 ALPHA® electric meters, 11,600+ water modules, utility and customer energy management portals, the EA_Mobile™ two-way mobile data collection system and IP AxisLink™ Gateways to enable convergence of distribution automation (DA) and AMI data through the same EnergyAxis mesh communications network. The solution will be delivered to Starkville using Elster's subscription-based Managed Services offering.

"Not only will customers be able to track their daily and average water and electricity usage, but the technology allows for bill projections, more-flexible billing options and in-depth infrastructure status reports," said Kemp. "The new system will also provide the city with quicker service responses, increased customer engagement, faster service restoration, increased operational efficiency, real-time monitoring and future adaptability to rate structures."

The Elster Managed Services AMI delivery option selected by Starkville will include a Utility Energy Portal that gives operations staff detailed meter reading, analysis and reporting capabilities. It will also include a Consumer Energy Portal that arms customers with real-time consumption information and provides the tools they need to become more involved with their energy management choices. The HealthMAP web portal included with the Managed Services solution will give operations personnel the ability to better view, analyze and manage the real-time health of the new smart grid network.

"We're pleased to be working with the Starkville electricity and public works teams to deliver on their promise to continually improve the level of service provided to their citizens," said Mark Fronmuller, President, Elster Solutions. "This latest contract underscores Elster's strong commitment to the public power market and the ability of our Managed Services offering to help utilities achieve the benefits of the smart grid, while better managing their risks and costs."

An initial deployment of the new project's infrastructure is expected to begin this year, and city employees will begin training for the new system in 2015. The full deployment is expected in 2016.

About Elster

Elster delivers complete Smart Grid and Energy Management Solutions that drive energy efficiency, operational improvements and cost savings for utilities, commercial and industrial customers and consumers. Elster uses its speed and agility to drive interoperability and open standards and strategically collaborates with customers and partners.

Its end-to-end electricity, water and gas offerings include advanced meters/sensors, secure communications, and data collection, management and analytics. Elster is dedicated to customer success in more than 130 countries through Elster's professional integration services, technical support and training.

CONTACT: Elster Solutions Barbara Lehenbauer 919-212-5088 barbara.lehenbauer@elster.com Juhl Communications Ginger Juhl 303-955-4771 ginger.juhl@elster.com

Source: Elster Solutions