June 7, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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A subsidiary of Hydro-Québec: Hilo lost a large part

A subsidiary of Hydro-Québec: Hilo lost a large part

As Hydro-Québec brings its subsidiary Hilo back under its yoke, employees are disillusioned with the idea of ​​leaving. start For a Crown Corporation like Hydro. David Saint-Germain, chief technology officer since 2020, resigned Wednesday to join the orbital monitoring firm North Star.

“In terms of career alignment, the recent restructuring was not in line with my vision for the future, so I bowed out,” he said. But it remains reluctant, because Hilo is performing well and meeting expectations. »

Last October, Hydro-Québec fired the CEO of its Hilo subsidiary, Sébastien Fournier. Hilo did not generate the results Hydro-Québec had hoped for, and the Crown corporation wanted to “reassess the business model” of Hilo.

However, according to David Saint-Germain, people in Hilo distributed the goods. “It’s not entirely true that Hilo is not meeting his goals,” he corrected.

“Halo was launched three years ago. There was no technical platform then. But you will see at the end of this winter, the figures that will come out, we have exceeded what we presented to the management,” he said.

The direction Hydro-Québec is taking with its subsidiaries “doesn’t fit him anymore,” Mr. Saint-Germain stated.

“Obviously, this creates a restructuring. There are people who are not registered with Hydro-Québec. They signed up for a business-oriented subsidiary, but it’s not the same type of employer, say. »

Ongoing negotiations

At Hydro-Québec, the announcements are said to have begun to inform the subsidiary’s 150 employees.

“Some of Hilo’s operations remain in a subsidiary, such as technology development, which represents more than half of Hilo’s employees. Other activities such as marketing, sales and customer service will be integrated into Hydro-Québec operations. “Some Hilo employees will have to become Hydro-Québec employees, and negotiations are underway with the unions,” explained Cendrix Bouchard of Hydro-Québec.

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The decisions taken by Hydro-Québec are aimed at maintaining Hilo’s operations, growth and capacity gains by avoiding the duplication of certain operations, the spokesperson added.

Live traffic in space

The stars may no longer align for Hilo and David Saint-Germain, but the latter is in control with his new challenge: directing traffic in space.

What is Hilo?

Created as a deregulated subsidiary of Hydro-Quebec, Hilo offers a smart home concept with a system of smart controls and thermostats. By optimizing their usage and meeting the challenges Hilo throws at them during peak hours, customers save on their electricity bill.

David St. Germain

  • He landed at North Star, a Montreal firm
  • His Position: Chief Executive Officer
  • His Mission: Manage space traffic and avoid the many collisions between the countless pieces of debris orbiting Earth and its user equipment

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