Decentrailized Energy Forum

Thanks to our sponsors, partners, presenting companies, investors, speakers and attending delegates, the 2018 Decentralised Energy Forum was a great success! DEF was pleased to host over 170 attendees including 40 entrepreneurs, 30 investors and funders, and 8 high growth technology companies. We look forward to seeing everyone at DEF 2019!


Registration, Coffee Breaks, and Reception: Wildrose Pre-Function

Presentations, Sessions and Meals: Wildrose Ballroom

7:00 - 8:00

Registration & Networking Breakfast

8:00 - 8:15

Opening Remarks


8:15 - 8:45

Keynote Speaker | Consumer Disruption and Modern Energy Market Design

Gary Holden


With over 30 years of experience in the electricity industry, Gary Holden has become a leader in grid disruption and changing the way consumers think about energy. Gary led TransAlta New Zealand in serving 35% of the New Zealand market and ushered TransAlta Generation into Alberta de-regulation. Furthermore, as CEO of Enmax Corporation, Gary introduced Alberta to the innovative long-term energy arrangement EasyMax, doubled Enmax’s market share, and transformed the generation market with the Shepard Power plant, wind projects and district energy in downtown Calgary.

Now, Gary is the CEO of Pulse Energy and his New Zealand retail energy company is connecting a new solar-battery system faster than one per hour. Why? Because consumers are asking for it. Pulse combines grid energy with solar-battery systems through time-of-use price signals; allowing consumers to reap the benefits of solar power. Time-of-use pricing rewards consumers for the contribution the battery makes to offset peak power demand and facilitates consumer participation in energy efficiency, electric vehicles and trading their excess power in peer-to-peer networks with like-minded consumers.

Gary has spent his career shaping energy policy. By applying a deep understanding of electricity markets, Gary has brought engineering, economics and vision to establish the future way policy makers, consumers and champions of a low carbon world can work together. Gary will present the “ideal model” to keep power price under control, while simultaneously delivering solutions for climate change. Come and see how the low cost world is also a low carbon world; and how solid energy policy is the key!

8:45 - 9:30

Panel Session | Capitalising on Disruption: Acknowledging the New Energy Economy

Major changes in the energy industry have uprooted traditional business models of companies across the globe. Driven by shifting technologies, environmental regulation and evolving customer expectations, the competition for customers is shifting and the appetite for change has never been more present. As energy companies explore diversifying their revenue streams by charging for services that extend beyond traditional power supply and delivery, the question remains: who will survive or perish amidst disruption?

Raymond McKay

VP, Energy Solutions

Florijn de Graaf

Sustainable Energy Systems Engineer

Bipin Chandra

Founder & CEO

Patricia Bourne


Sara Mudge

Community Energy Specialist

9:30 - 9:55

Coffee Break


9:55 - 10:30

Technology Innovations: Game Changer Showcase

Hosted by the British Consulate General Calgary

The next cutting-edge tech companies take the stage to showcase how their business fits within our modern energy economy! The Game Changer Showcase is designed to be the premier platform for early-stage and high-growth companies to present their ideas to strategic players across the value chain.

10:30 - 11:00

Keynote Speaker | Building Your Dream Network

John Hill

VP of Network

John is the VP of Network for Techstars, a mentorship-driven seed stage investment program that dreams big and accelerates the growth of tech companies. To date, hundreds of companies have gone through the Techstars accelerator, and John is charged with supporting and growing a global network of tech entrepreneurs, mentors and investors who surround them.

Once a Higher Education Evangelist at LinkedIn, now the VP of Network at Techstars, John is a huge proponent of “the hustle” and believes “changing the world” can be more than hyperbole. A firm believer that a network needs love and attention, John’s presentation will outline how you can build a diverse network that can actually help forge your career forward. Whether you’re focused on online or offline connections, his speech highlights valuable tips and tricks that every entrepreneur needs to know when it comes to networking effectively!

11:00 - 12:00

Business Brokering Event

Find the right partners your organisation needs to get your project off the ground! This interactive session will bring together industry experts from similar fields to provoke a conversation on how your skills, products, and services can be the perfect match for their organisation. Whether you are seeking capital or filling a technology gap, this session will cater to your needs!

12:00 - 12:30

Keynote Speaker | On the Edge: Managing Risk and Reaching the Summit

Caroline Gleich

Pro-Skier, Mountaineer & Adventurer

Mountaineering and entrepreneurship both involve a strategy of calculated risk and venturing out on your own. Whether it’s in the back-country or the business world, it’s not for the faint of heart. Join us at #DEF2018 as Caroline Gleich shares her perspective about managing risk and the parallels of finding the edge in both the mountains and the entrepreneurial arena. Known as the Queen of the Wasatch Range, Caroline’s experiences both on and off the mountain have made her an inspiration to outdoor enthusiasts and entrepreneurs alike.

As a pro skier and mountaineer, Caroline has carved out a career doing what she loves and is backed by some of the biggest outdoor brands including Patagonia, Keen Footwear, and Clif Bar, just to name a few. She recently received acclaim for becoming the first woman and fourth person to ski all 90 lines in “The Chuting Gallery,” a back-country skiing guide to the Wasatch. She has also been praised by Outside for her activism on social and environmental justice.

Caroline’s goal is to inspire people to get outside, live a healthy, active lifestyle and protect the places they love to play. When she isn’t on the snow, she loves trail running, alpine climbing, ridge scrambling, biking and dreaming about her next human-powered adventure.

12:30 - 13:30

Networking Lunch

13:30 - 14:00

Keynote Speaker | Scrutinizing the Modern Energy Pivot

Gianni Kovacevic

Investor, Author & Enlightener

Gianni is an internationally known investor and strategist who specializes in decoding complicated current events. He is a published author who draws from over 20,000 hours of research, and is a sought-after commentator related to wide ranging themes – from the divestment pivot in modern energy, to the rise of a new spending class in emerging markets. An avid proponent of realistic environmentalism, he has enlightened audiences around the world with his unique brand of storytelling that colourfully demonstrates how the environment and investment often go hand-in-hand.

His new book, “My Electrician Drives a Porsche?” was introduced to audiences by way of a one-of-a-kind coast to coast journey across America in an all-electric Tesla, now credited as the world’s first zero emission book tour.

14:00 - 14:45

Networking Break

14:45 - 16:25

Paving the Way: Global Showcase

Times have changed and the way we deliver energy has too. New technologies, climate change policies, and market drivers are all triggering the industry’s largest shakeup in over a century. Disruption is forcefully reshaping power systems around the world, and EVs are threatening oil’s dominance as a transport fuel. Join these experts at #DEF2018 as they showcase how their respective global projects were designed, operated, and managed to achieve reliable economic and environmental benefits within our modern energy economy.

Bill Abolt

VP, Energy

Bipin Chandra

Founder & CEO

Pratap Revuru

Senior Manager, IoT Solutions and Partnerships

Bård Klungseth


John Forsyth

Director of Market Development

Rick Maclise

Standards Team Leader

16:25 - 16:30

Closing Remarks

16:30 - 19:00

Networking Reception


Registration, Coffee Breaks, and Reception: Wildrose Pre-Function
Presentations, Sessions and Meals: Wildrose Ballroom

7:45 - 8:45

Networking Breakfast

8:45 - 9:00

Opening Remarks


9:00 - 9:30

Keynote Speaker | Accounting for Liabilities and Happiness in a Restorative Economy

Mark Anielski

President & Chief Well-being Officer

Mark is an economic strategist specializing in the economics of well-being. He is schooled in ecological economics, accounting and forestry. Mark believes that our measures of success should be focused on maximizing the well-being of people and the planet. He has advised nations and communities in Canada, Bhutan, French Polynesia, The Netherlands, Austria and China in their aspirations to develop a new economic model based on well-being and happiness.

He is the author of the award-winning book The Economics of Happiness: Building Genuine Wealth, which provides a blueprint for building the new economy of well-being. His new book An Economy of Well-being: Common Sense Tools for Building Genuine Wealth and Happiness, was recently published in May 2018.

For the past 30 years Mark has been the President of Anielski Management Inc. an economic advisory services group that provides strategic economic counsel to communities, nations and businesses on how to build flourishing economies of well-being. He is an international expert in natural capital accounting and recently co-founded the Centre for Integral Finance and Economics (London, UK) that focuses on developing new tools to support the emerging field of impact investment and banking.

9:30 - 10:00

From Linear to Circular: Closing the Loop on Waste Streams

The linear ‘take-make-dispose’ economy is no longer sustainable and businesses can’t ignore the toll this system is taking on both the environment and their bottom line. As we begin to re-think and re-design products that are ‘made to be made again’, it’s clear the energy industry requires a systemic shift to achieve long-term sustainability. This segment dives into how the energy system is maximizing the circular economy to cycle back materials through the value chain for re-use, resulting in less energy and resource consumption.

JT Steenkamp

Project Manager

Liz Lappin

VP Project Development

10:00 - 10:15

Coffee Break

10:15 - 11:00

Technology Innovations: Game Changer Showcase

Hosted by Calgary Economic Development

The next cutting-edge tech companies take the stage to showcase how their business fits within our modern energy economy! The Game Changer Showcase is designed to be the premier platform for early-stage and high-growth companies to present their ideas to strategic players across the value chain.


11:00 - 11:30

Keynote Speaker | Big Data & The New Energy Consumer

Bruce Orloff

Partner, Energy & Utilities

Bruce Orloff is a Partner and Smart Grid Leader in IBM’s Energy & Utilities practice with over 29 years experience in the energy, utilities and telecommunications industries. Bruce is an Industry Expert in Smart Grid and Advanced Metering Infrastructure. He has extensive knowledge and experience managing, developing and implementing advanced solutions in competitive electricity and telecommunications de-regulated markets in North America, Sweden and Australia.

Some of his main achievements include implementation of leading edge advanced metering and smart grid solutions in Ontario, as well as overall project management and technical lead on the deployment of a multi-million dollar optical fiber network across North America. Bruce was also part of the executive committee and a board member of SmartGrid Canada from 2010 to 2013, which is a national organization dedicated to promoting a more modern and efficient electricity grid for the benefit of all Canadians through education, collaboration, promotion, and action.

11:30 - 12:45

The Digital Revolution in an Electrified Future

Big data, automation, AI and the Blockchain are opening up a new realm of possibilities for the energy industry. In today’s digital world, more and more devices are becoming interconnected, delivering transparency and trust to the marketplace. The adoption of these technologies is vital to the survival of companies. Listen in to these experts as they outline how these tech advancements will impact the future of energy.

Brian Wyvill


Robin Winsor

President & CEO

Michael Brown

Director of Innovation

Matt Sachs


Jerry Chwang

Managing Consultant / Client Lead

12:45 - 13:45

Networking Lunch

13:45 - 14:30

Panel Session | The Alberta Advantage

Dive into how Alberta’s existing strengths in large-scale engineering and primary industries can be integrated with emerging strengths in technology to form the basis for Alberta’s future economy. Panelists represent strategically positioned industry players, tech success stories and the educational system. The discussion will focus on opportunities as well as challenges faced by tech companies in Alberta.

Richard Gorecki

Director of Portfolio Development

Jeff LaFrenz


Frank Maurer

Associate Dean, Innovation & Strategic Partnerships

Maureen Kolla

Senior Manager, Renewable and Alternative Energy

Andre van Dijk

VP, Power Delivery Customer Service & System Operations

14:30 - 15:00

Keynote Speaker | Artificial Intelligence for Clean Cities

Mark Speaker

Industry Solutions Executive

As Industry Solutions Executive for Microsoft, Mark is on the front lines of the digital transformation in the oil and gas, mining and utilities industries. He gets to see firsthand how the current wave of technology is reshaping these industries. At Microsoft, he is responsible for helping his clients understand the digital possibilities that can transform what they currently do today, making their businesses more profitable, using the amazing offerings on Microsoft Azure, O365 and beyond.

15:00 - 15:15

Closing Remarks