Mitsui Chemicals Invests in Digital Grid Corporation, an Electricity Trading DX that Contributes to a Decarbonized Society

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2021.12.13

Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.

Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. (Tokyo: 4183; President & CEO: HASHIMOTO Osamu) today announced that it invested earlier this month into DIGITAL GRID Corporation (Tokyo; President & CEO: TOYODA Yusuke), which operates a platform service for the direct trading of electricity between power generation companies and customers.

With this investment allowing Mitsui Chemicals and DIGITAL GRID to partner up and leverage their strengths together, the pair will look to pursue a data solutions business that targets Japan’s push for renewable energy.

Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.

Background and issues

Nations around the world are working on carbon neutrality efforts in the fight to stop global warming, and Japan too has declared its intentions to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. However, the current reality in Japan is that little progress has been made so far with respect to renewable energy utilization, which was meant to play a major role in this fight. This can be attributed to the effort required for coordinating supply and demand, as well as to the issue of high costs.

If Japan is to continue expanding its use of renewable energy, it will need to have a setup for simple and low-cost transactions to help coordinate the supply–demand balance of this generally intermittent energy source and reduce its cost. And both Mitsui Chemicals and DIGITAL GRID believe that the latter’s DIGITAL GRID Platform will be an effective means of achieving such a setup.

Synergy between this business and the Mitsui Chemicals Group

Mitsui Chemicals operates a business in which it provides diagnostics and consulting services for solar power plants. This sees Mitsui Chemicals contribute to the stable rollout and use of solar power, which holds a particularly important position among renewable energies. As of this August, Mitsui Chemicals has also been providing online diagnostic services, allowing it to diagnose power generation capabilities in a shorter timeframe and estimate potential power generation volume sooner.
In partnership with the digital grid platform, we will accelerate the creation of data solution-type businesses and contribute to the expansion of renewable energy.

Overview of the DIGITAL GRID

DIGITAL GRID provides the "Digital Grid Platform (DGP)", a platform equipped with a system that allows "power generators who generate electricity" and "consumers who buy electricity" to buy and sell directly.
The DGP takes various forms of electricity – including renewable energy as well as more conventional sources – and connects this with electricity demand in a peer-to-peer fashion.

The three main features of this platform are as follows:

  • ① Enabling of transactions to be carried out without the need for special power trading qualifications or system investments ⇒ Increase in the number of players engaged in power trading
  • ② Sorting of electricity by type (e.g. customers can choose to only purchase renewable energy) ⇒ Making the use of renewable energy a smoother process
  • ③ Use of AI and other technologies to automate complex processes such as supply–demand coordination ⇒ Power generation companies can expect efficient sales, while customers can expect lower electricity costs and more.
Conceptual diagram of DGP
Conceptual diagram of DGP

※ Overview of DIGITAL GRID

Company name DIGITAL GRID Corporation
Representative President & CEO TOYODA Yusuke
Established October 2017
Location Floor 7, Marunouchi-Nakadori Building, Marunouchi 2-2-3, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Business Operating a trading platform for electricity and environmental value
Website (Japanese only) http://www.digitalgrid.com/