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Leading Excellence: Aligned with self-reliance

The IESA Industry Excellence Awards

The IESA Industry Excellence Awards were initiated by the India Energy Storage Alliance in 2017 to acknowledge the innovativeness and achievements of organisations in energy storage, EV and the microgrid industry.

This year, specifically, IESA lauds the resilient efforts of the industry and its perseverance in the wake of a slowdown and the midst of a pandemic.

IESA's endeavor has always been to encourage and champion the work of organizations, projects and people who not only help in promoting green energy solutions, but also create value for the end consumer. The excellence awards recognise and reward remarkable achievements in the field of energy storage, e-mobility and microgrid solutions.

The awardees are selected by the competitive scoring and evaluation framework developed by the jury panel and senior advisors to IESA, who comprise global Industry veterans and policymakers. The awards are presented at IESA's annual conference and Expo event held every year to showcase developments in the Energy Storage space. Over the years, different categories of awards have been added based on industry feedback and suggestions.

With the development of new policies in this space, IESA added new categories to recognise the effort of both the State and Central government bodies and departments, and key policy makers and regulators. This year IESA has also introduced categories to honor the efforts of women leaders in both energy storage and e-mobility sphere.

The awards are given under different categories like:

  • Technology Innovation of the year
  • ESS Project of the year
  • Microgrid Project of the year
  • Microgrid Company of the year
  • EV Emerging Company of the year
  • EV Company of the year (e-2W segment)
  • EV Company of the year (e-3W segment)
  • EV Charging Infrastructure Project of the year
  • EV Charging Infrastructure Company of the year
  • EV Charging Infrastructure Emerging Company of the year
  • EV Charging Infrastructure Service Provider of the year
  • Energy Storage and EV Policy Leadership Award for States
  • Woman Leader of the Year (ESS & EV)
  • Emerging Leader of the year
  • Policy Pioneer of the year
  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • IESA Earth Day Hero Award

THE IESA AWARDS 2020 

The fourth IESA Industry Excellence Awards this year were held on November 3, as a part of the virtual India Energy Storage Week (IESW) conference and exhibition.

More than 50 applications across 15 categories were received for this year's Excellence Awards. The nominations were scrutinised by the selection committee that was chaired by Pankaj Batra (Former Chairperson, CEA) and included Jitendra Kulkarni (VP, Innovation, SB Energy) and Dr. Rahul Walawalkar (President, IESA). The 'Policy Pioneer Award' and 'Woman Leader of the year' were two new categories introduced this year.

Following are details of the categories and the winners  

AWARD - Technology Innovation of the Year  

This award recognizes organizations that have displayed excellence in innovation in their product or solution. Focus is given to the stage of technology and the unique quotient the product brings to the market, addressing key challenges. Special recognition is given to products whose R&D has been conducted in India. This year two winners were announced in this category.

WINNER-I - Epsilon Advanced Materials 

Epsilon won this award for their technology to convert a by-product of coke oven operation to synthetic graphite to be used in anode of Li-ion batteries. The product demonstrates higher capacity and lifecycle than its competitors. The facility to manufacture the product has been recently commissioned by the company in Bangalore. The technology is in the process of patent approval and has been totally devised in India.

This innovation is of critical importance as India is poised to launch 50GWh advanced chemistry cell manufacturing in India. The Epsilon team is already working with international companies to pre-qualify their synthetic graphite for use in the latest generation of Li-ion batteries.

WINNER-II - Delta Electronics

Delta won this award for their 'Microgrid Plant Controller' that addresses technical challenges of the microgrid operation and its deployment, and at the same time ensures RE resource is operating at peak performance, while reducing the cost and environmental impact associated with the production of energy.

The controller is a single hardware and software platform pre-engineered to meet the need of a wide spectrum. The system is fully commercialized, and the R&D was carried out by the Delta team in India.

AWARD - ESS Project of the year 

This award recognizes a company for executing the best energy storage project of the year. While selecting the winner, special focus was given to projects that were executed and commissioned in India, and also managed development and R&D initiatives in India, addressing and overcoming several challenges.

WINNER - AES

AES received this award for their Grid Connected Utility Scale Storage Project in Delhi. AES and Mitsubishi Corporation signed a partnership agreement to deliver India's first grid-scale Battery Energy Storage System project in 2018. The 10MW one-hour system was inaugurated in February 2019 at a Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd's Rohini Sub-Station in Delhi. This project has been built to demonstrate the benefits Battery Energy Storage can bring to the Indian electricity grid. The project is the first of its kind commissioned in India. AES led the design, development, construction and operations of this project with majority of the work being conducted by their India team. Since commissioning, the project has successfully demonstrated various applications - like providing ancillary services, ramping support and peak shifting - highlighting the potential of energy storage for helping distribution companies to improve power quality and reliability.

AWARD - Microgrid Project of the year 

This award recognizes the immense contribution made by energy storage developers, manufacturers and power electronics companies in the microgrid market. It specifically considers key projects undertaken in India, and their impact on the society and overalllocal or national economy.

WINNER - Larsen & Toubro

Larsen & Toubro Ltd received this award for the 22MWp microgrid project in Port Blair, Andaman. The project highlights unique microgrid solutions with solar and energy storage, helping remote island communities to reduce reliance on diesel generation. It is also India's first large scale microgrid with 20 MW Solar PV and 8 MWh of Battery Energy Storage Project.

The L&T team had to deal with challenges for delivering the solution to the remote island and also manage the special environmental constraints as well as terrain, given the pristine nature of Andaman Islands. Containerized battery energy solution and in-house developed energy management system are some of the key highlights of the project. L&T is a major technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing, and financial services conglomerate, with global operations.

AWARD - Microgrid Company of the year

This award recognizes the company that is involved in supplying the last mile or remote areas of the country with clean and reliable electricity. It also highlights the role of the microgrid company that gives best customer satisfaction with good performance and maintenance of microgrids.

WINNER - Husk Power System

Husk Power is one of the world's leading off-grid utilities. They provide reliable power to rural communities and businesses, entirely from renewable energy sources – 24 x 7. More than 30MW of generation asset and uptime of 99 percent, makes it one of the best off grid utilities not only in India but across the globe. With more than 90 minigrids on ground, and having served more than 15,000 rural communities, Husk Power System is currently the leading minigrids player, bringing socio-economic development of the deprived communities in India. The company designs, builds, owns and operates the lowest cost hybrid power plant and distribution network, offering a flexible 'pay-as-you-go' energy service, using a mobile-enabled smart metering system. It's grid-compatible 100 percent 'theft proof' power generation and transmission lines meet global standards and can be rolled out rapidly and cost effectively to help meet national electrification goals.

AWARD - EV Emerging Company of the year 

This award recognizes EV manufacturers, equipment manufacturers or service/solutions providers for outstanding performance during the past year. Jury decisions are made based on revenue, growth rate over the last two years, major achievements in terms of projects or products released, innovative business models, and the company's best practices.

WINNER - Bounce (Wicked Ride Adventure Services)

Bounce has achieved a revenue of `100 crore in 2019. They have deployed 1500+ vehicles on their platform and completed 2 million km. The company is actively promoting battery swapping service and has installed over 100+ swap stations in two cities. They are spread across five States in India and have been demonstrating many innovative approaches for better market reach. This includes services like swap stations, keyless technology, lock smart, availability of vehicle in less than three minutes, and no issue of parking (users can park the vehicle at designated parking.

AWARD - EV Company of the year (e-2W segment) 

The award is to recognize companies with the best e-2W deployed in the Indian market. Attention is given to revenue earned in the last year, and financial growth over last two years. Major product launches and geographic presence, innovative approach and industry best practices followed, are also considered.

WINNER - Hero Electric

Hero Electric was started in 2007, and today the company is the market leader with a share of 40+ percent in the e-2W segment. In the last financial year, it recorded a revenue of `238 crore. The key product differentiators are lower price point, higher battery life and efficiency. The company has a presence in all the categories of e-2Ws, starting from low-speed models to high-speed vehicles, across the country.

Hero Electric's endeavor of making the country greener and to be the best in 'Zero Pollution' transportation in the country through its wide range of Electric Vehicles is supported by its Mission 'No Emission'.

AWARD - EV Company of the year (e-3W segment) 

The award is to recognize the company with the best e-3W deployed in the Indian market. The electric 3W market is very fragmented in India currently, and is dominated by passenger carrier segment, followed by the load carrier segment. Over 300 companies assemble e-3Ws for the unorganized sector in India primarily with lead-acid batteries.

WINNER - Kinetic Green

The company is a venture from the Kinetic and Firodia Group. It offers a wide range of battery-operated vehicles such as E-Autos, E-Carts and Buggies, with intrinsic features like zero carbon emission, no noise, no vibration, and intelligent ergonomics that make them ideal solutions for smart cities.

Kinetic Green is a front runner in indigenization of manufacturing and has achieved complete localization, except for battery cells. The company pays strict adherence to the QC and QA processes. It offers innovative models to make it attractive for the customers. The company is the market leader in the organized e-3W segment and has expanded its global presence as well.

AWARD - EV Charging Infrastructure Project of the Year

This award recognizes the immense contribution made by charging service providers to the EV industry. It also specifically recognizes key projects undertaken in India and their impact on the market.

WINNER - Fortum Charge & Drive Pvt Ltd

Fortum has been creating a network of charging stations to enable the growth of the EV ecosystem in the country. The major achievement of the company is in establishing scalable models through partnerships with EV OEMs and other stakeholders.

Fortum built a 50KW charging station in Gurgaon, which was first-of-its-kind when launched and unheard of in India then. In this project, the Fortum team overcame challenges of power conditioning, tripping issues, and executing the project in a very short time frame. Through innovation, they it resolved tripping issues indigenously, increased reliability, implemented quick turnaround time, and offered convenience to customers.

AWARD - EV Charging Infrastructure Company of the year

Realizing the fact that EV charging is critical for the growth of the EV adoption, IESA committee decided to recognise the work of companies in the business of setting up charging stations. This award distinguishes the company that has showcased exemplary performance in the EV charging infrastructure market in India during the past year.

WINNER - Exicom Tele Systems

Exicom has won this award this year for holding the highest market share in terms of revenue. The company has also installed the highest number of chargers across the country.The key differentiators of the services have been the BMS, batteries analytics, and complete solution availability.

Exicom has been present in power electronics and energy systems market for over two decades and now enjoys a leading position in EV ecosystem solutions as well. The company has a large customer base and also leads
in technology innovation. It has filed two patents on charging infrastructure and user interface apps.

AWARD - EV Charging Infrastructure Emerging Company of the year

This award is presented to the company that has shown remarkable performance in terms of revenue growth and best practices, and has grown from a significant position to one of the top tier companies.

WINNER - Okaya Power

Okaya is one of the leading manufacturers and suppliers of EV charging stations, lithium-ion batteries, and lead-acid batteries in India. It has deployed more than 500 chargers and 250 MWh of battery energy storage systems (BESS) solutions across the country.

Its strategic initiatives for its success include building a diversified product basket across augmented areas of charging and battery manufacturing. Its best practices are in the effective implementation of corrective and preventive actions in product design, quality, and in-depth analysis of failure modes.

The energy storage company has AC/DC charging stations and off-board charger solutions in its e-mobility product range. It is one of the largest suppliers of EV charging stations in India.

AWARD - EV Charging Infrastructure Service Provider of the year

This award felicitates the company that has exhibited exemplary performance and leads the EV charging service market as a charging network operator.

WINNER - Energy Efficiency Services Ltd. (EESL)

EESL is a Super Energy Service Company (ESCO), which enables consumers, industries and governments to effectively manage their energy needs through energy efficient technologies. In 2018, EESL launched a national e-mobility program to promote the EV ecosystem in India. Its energy efficiency solutions have saved the country over 47 billion kWh energy annually, while reducing 36.5 million tons of carbon emission.

Key differentiating factors of the company include rigorous location assessment, payments integration, customer support, maintenance, building a large charging plaza, and incorporating innovative business models to offer the lowest rates. Company has partnerships with fleet operators, EV-OEMs, hospitals, municipalities, and even oil marketing companies.

AWARD - Energy Storage and EV Policy Leadership Award for States

Apart from the initiatives being taken by the Central government, we have many States driving the adoption and manufacturing initiatives for storage and EV sectors. Over the past three years, more than 10 states have come up with energy storage and EV policies for accelerating EV adoption as well as inviting industries to set up manufacturing investments. The selection committee has decided to recognize these efforts with an award, for the State that has developed best policies to drive the demand creation.

WINNER - Delhi

The Delhi Electric Vehicle Policy, 2020, aims to establish Delhi as the EV capital of India and accelerate the pace of EV adoption across vehicle segments, especially in the mass category of 2W, public/shared transport vehicles and goods carriers. The policy seeks to drive rapid adoption of Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) so that they contribute to 25 percent of all new vehicle registrations by 2024 and bring about a material improvement in Delhi's environment by bringing down emissions from the transport sector.

AWARD - Emerging Leader of the Year

This prestigious award is for individuals who have showcased exemplary performance in the company as well as in the industry, have played a notable role in the grooming of future industry leaders, been a part of innovation in technical and business processes, as well as made an impact in regional, national and global markets.

WINNER - Anant Nahata, MD of Exicom Tele-Systems

Mr Nahata has played a pivotal role in building Exicom into a top technology solution provider in DC power, e-mobility and storage segments. His decision to use power electronics experience in e-mobility has been a game changer, and under his leadership, Exicom has already deployed 1600+ EV chargers in the India market.

He has a bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and worked as an investment banker with Credit Suisse for a couple of years before returning to India to join the family business.

AWARD - Policy Pioneer of the Year

This year IESA has introduced the Policy Pioneer Award, given to an individual for exemplary efforts taken towards shaping the energy storage and EV industry in the country.

WINNER - Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog 

A visionary, Amitabh Kant has put in unwavering efforts towards structuring various policies around energy storage. He has played a critical role in influencing the future of the ES and EV market in India. He believes that clean energy will be a major driver of India's economic recovery and international competitiveness, and that we must leverage our domestic innovation ecosystem to bring value to the country and industry.

NITI Aayog's role in shaping the National Mission for Transformative Mobility and National Program for Advanced Chemistry Cell Battery Manufacturing (Giga Factory), has been well appreciated by the industry.

A member of the Indian Administrative Service (Kerala Cadre: 1980 batch), Mr. Kant has been a key driver of the Make in India, Startup India, Incredible India and God's Own Country initiatives that positioned India and Kerala State as leading manufacturing and tourism destinations.

AWARD - Lifetime Achievement Award

This prestigious award is for individuals who have showcased exemplary performance in the company as well as in the industry, have played a notable role in the grooming of future industry leaders, been a part of innovation in technical and business processes, as well as made an impact in regional, national and global markets.

WINNER - Rakesh Malhotra, Founder of SAR group

Mr Malhotra is a veteran in the battery and energy storage space. He is the founder of the SAR Group and Livguard Energy Technology.

He is a serial entrepreneur since 1988 and an early-stage investor in India, Singapore and US. SAR Group companies are engaged in a wide range of industries including power electronics, energy storage, renewable energy, water and air purification, Industrial IOT, etc.

He also serves as the Managing Partner of Ncubate Capital Partners, the private investment arm of SAR Group, that is exploring the renewable space, looking for projects and technologies around storage, e-vehicles and data analytics. Three out of 14 start-ups funded by Ncubate since 2012 operate in the renewable energy storage and e-vehicle space.

A graduate from Jadavpur University in Electronics & Telecom Engineering, he started his career in 1983 at NELCO (Tata Group) followed by Mitsui and Siemens.

WOMEN OF THE YEAR

Awards were also presented to women who have played a leading role in promoting electrification of vehicles, deployment of RE and ES projects. Encouraging the involvement and contribution of women in these fields, the IESA award selection committee decided to honor two women winners from different segments, this year.

AWARD - Woman Leader of the Year (ESS)

This award is presented to women leaders who have made remarkable contributions towards the ESS industry. Though one winner was selected, all nominees were strong contenders for this award.

WINNER - Dr Judy Jeevarajan 

Dr Jeevarajan has spent more than two decades researching on Lithium ion battery safety and on thermal runaway.She works with Underwriters Laboratories Inc. and has been part of standards development with International Electrotechnical Commission, and the Society of Automotive Engineers to name a few. In addition, she has initiated the Battery Safety Council with the National Transportation Safety Board, and her contributions were invaluable in creating awareness and in training the industry professionals on battery safety in the country.

AWARD - Woman Leader of the Year (EV)

This category is awarded to women leaders who have exhibited extraordinary efforts in the promotion of the EV market in the country and have played a pivotal role in shaping the industry.

WINNER - Sulajja Firodia Motwani

Ms Firodia Motwani has been part of the Indian automobile industry for the past 25 years. She founded Kinetic Green Energy in 2015, and during the past five years the company has emerged as one of the most sort after brands and a market leader in the e-3W segment. Other feathers in her hat include heading the e-3W segment at the Society of Manufacturing of Electric Eehicles, and leading EV implementation at DHI.

IESA - Earth Day heroes

This year IESA also gave out the Earth Day Hero Awards, that were constituted under the IESA and Earth Day Network partnership for the Great Global Clean-up Hero Campaign to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Five winners under different categories of the campaign were chosen for the awards.

IESA-Earth Day Hero 'For Impacting the Urban' - Madhukar Varshney, Founder of 'Rise Foundation'

Mr Varshney's outstanding work has inspired many urban dwellers of northwest India to do their bit for the environment. His organisation adopted the strategy of 'Miyawaki Plantation' to turn an urban space in Dwarka, Delhi, into a forest. Around 4,000 individuals and 250 households became a part of the process to plant and maintain the grove. The Foundation showcased easy methods to make earthen pot composters at home as repositories that turn kitchen waste into manure as fertilizer for the urban forest developed.

IESA-Earth Day Hero 'For Encouraging the Children in School' - A D Gomes, Principal of St. Augustine's Day School

Principal Gomes is a true inspiration for his school students, teachers, and other staff. Online MUN session on climate change, online art competition to spread environmental awareness, online PPT making competitions on several environmental issues, nature quiz, an online study of varied plant types and on each one's importance, encouragement to students to plant trees and keep bird feeders at home in their balconies or terraces are a few of his school's regular engagements in environmental protection that impact over 3,500 students and teachers.

IESA-Earth Day Hero 'For Mobilizing Youth and Social Media Outreach' - Rumit Walia, Founder of 'Tears of the Earth'

Tears of the Earth is a community of citizens with a strong concern for the environment. 'Unstoppable' describes them well as they continue their programs for a better environment despite the ongoing lockdown. Members of the community direct their efforts to create a Pledge Wave – to Do it yourself (DIY) activities that recycle, upcycle, and re-use waste material; to use of art forms to widen environmental awareness; help increase the green cover; and protect animal and bird species.

IESA-Earth Day Hero 'For Inspiring and Mobilizing Women' - Neha Ankit Kadakia, Founder of 'Hastaksharr'

Ms Kadakia, founder of a woman-centric social enterprise Hastaksharr, has taken up a series of interesting out-of-the-box initiatives to encourage over 21,000 women and their children across the country to engage in eco-friendly activities. Her many methods of engaging people include green Do It Yourself activities, ways to make organic skincare products, art competitions to spread environmental awareness, and an eBook in the form of a video flipbook that comprises stories of several green warriors who do great work for the environment yet go unnoticed. She has conducted several online educative sessions on organic painting, story-telling to spread environmental awareness, etc.

IESA-Earth Day Hero 'For Awareness in the Rural' - Aakriti Tamrakar

Ms Tamrakar, the youngest Earth Day Hero, is a master's student in Environmental Studies. She has sought the support of her fellow villagers and the police authority to make her entire village in Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh, environment-friendly and aware. Waste management awareness drives, distribution of sapling and masks stitched from waste cloth, are just a few of the many means she adopts to help the 8,000 inhabitants of her village make a switch to environment-friendly ways of life.
Author : IESA
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