My visit to Bangalore the week of January 14-18, 2008 has offered many wonderful opportunities to see India’s Silicon Valley. The visit to Infosys in ElectronicCitywas truly a surprise: a Silicon Valleystyle Google campus with more impressive architecture. The campus is very beautiful and its contrast to the surrounding areas is jarring and amazing at the same time. The Infosys founder, Narayana Murthy, has diverted some of his entrepreneurial energy into transforming a non profit that feeds 85,000 local children a daily lunch with the same attention to detail that the campus shows. Clean, fast, efficient, organic. Thank you Hema, for organizing the visit.
Hema and Ashok Hattangady manage Conzerv, founded 25 years ago. They grew it from a family owned business to a venture funded one. Hema is the Vice Chairman & CEO and Ashok Hattangady is the CTO of Conzerv Systems Pvt. Ltd., a 25 million dollar Indian company rapidly becoming a multinational.
Conzerv manufactures several kinds of meters and provides energy efficiency training and consulting. While their core business has been in other industrial applications for meters of all kinds, it has recently expanded to include energy audits using web-based solutions to interpret data and identify energy saving opportunities. Most relevant to this blog, data center energy efficiency has been generating leads for them over the last 90 days. Hema also introduced me to Satish Kumar, who is catalyzing the IT industry with a brainstorming session in New Delhi. Unfortunately it takes place the week after I am scheduled to depart. More to folow as I hear about the conclusions. Dale Sartor of Lawrence Berkeley Lab was scheduled to participate.
Through the assistance of B.G. Rudrappa, a former Karnataka Power Corporation executive and A N Ramesha, Chief General Manager of Bangalore Electricity Supply Company BESCOM, I was able to address 20 staff regarding collaboration among vendors, utilities, research institutions and users in Silicon Valley on the topic of energy efficiency in data centers. While the staff made clear to me that this is not a priority and that they enjoy generating huge revenues from IT companies, they were willing to concede that if there is energy wasted, it is in BESCOM’s longterm interest to educate their ratepayers on the benefits of best practices in data center design. “Captive power” is how locals refer to diesel generated power that sits next to each major residential or commercial building. Companies frequently generate their own power full time rather than use utility-provided electricity, citing its availability and quality as superior. In fact, it is estimated that 1.5 M MW of power is supplied by BESCOM locally, while an additional .9 M MW of power is off the grid: commercial buildings and residential developments using diesel generators. Of that 2.3 M MW, just 20 – 30 MW may be known data center usage – and very little of it is supplied by BESCOM. A small base but growing rapidly.
Both Sudhir Sethi, Founder, Chairman & MD of IDG Ventures India, as well as Dr. Sridhar Mitta, Managing Director of E4E India, recommended that NASSCOM