A rechargeable battery rental service jointly offered by Orix Corp. and NEC Corp. for single-family homes in the Tokyo area has drawn around 1,000 applicants ahead of the August start of the launch, according to a company source.
The service, offered by One Energy Corp., which is majority owned by Orix, will charge ¥5,145 per month to rent a battery, compared with more than ¥1 million to buy a similar home recharging device. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government offers subsidies for home rechargeable batteries.
The device can store 5.35 kilowatt-hours of electricity in the night when power rates are lower.
The monthly charge will be offset entirely and become effectively cost-free if the household leases rooftop space to One Energy for installing solar panels, the company said.
The rental is available in the service area of Tokyo Electric Power Co., which supplies electricity to homes and businesses in Tokyo and the surrounding prefectures.
For a family of three in Nerima Ward, which has been testing the device, the annual electricity bill is projected to total ¥160,000 in 2013, compared with ¥235,000 without the recharging system in 2012, the source said.
One Energy, also controlled by NEC, is aiming at 100,000 subscribers in three years. It started accepting applications in June.