Upside was created for the Nesta Dynamic Demand Challenge in August 2013.  As a finalist in the challenge, we won £10,000 to develop a simple prototype and business plan for our service.

As a result of the competition, we won entry to the EU’s Climate KIC acceleration programme in July 2014.  We entered stage 3 of the acceleration programme in March 2015.  We have now won significant grant funding to build a pilot of our service:

Innovate UK.  We are leading a consortium that includes Sharp Laboratories of Europe, Select Innovations, Tempus Energy and the University of Manchester that has won £470k from Innovate UK to build a pilot of our core service and communication protocols.  This project commenced in March 2015.  Our advisory board on this project includes Siemens, Riello UPS and Emerson Network Power.

DECC EEF.  We have won £300k from DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund to build the platform, community and partnership agreements that underpin our open innovation model for developing algorithms for managing a distributed energy storage portfolio.  This project commenced in April 2015.

Innovate UK.  We are part of a consortium that includes Mixergy and the University of Oxford that is undertaking a feasibility study of the potential to integrate domestic hot water systems into our service.

Our funding

We are grateful to the following organisations for their support and funding of our projects.


Upside has also won significant recognition from the industry, through awards such as Rushlight, Shell Springboard, the UK Energy Innovation Awards and SXSW Eco.

Artificial Intelligence seen as a key technology to enable better balancing of UK’s energy market

Next generation AI techniques for energy demand response
Upside Energy and Heriot-Watt University have been awarded a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) grant by Innovate UK to maximise the opportunities presented by the emerging energy demand response market.
The project will use machine learning, and distributed artificial intelligence methods to manage a portfolio of storage assets to provide real-time energy reserves to the grid.

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It’s a nifty idea – it combines a way to help the whole country balance its load, with a scheme that actually pays money to subscribers.

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