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What role do time-of-use tariffs play in enabling the future of customer collaboration? Examining aWATTar and True Energy

The convergence in the relationship between energy providers and their customers is moving faster than ever, driven by a want to reduce costs on both sides and a desire for new and novel services. This new relationship is largely facilitated by the advent of new technologies becoming commonplace – technology such as smart meters, smartphone apps and new energy assets. 

Each technology plays its own role in profoundly changing customer and supplier behaviour. In recent years, smart meters have enabled us to have a live view of all electricity activity in our homes. Apps, and other tools, help us to visualise and track this activity empowering customers to take control over their consumption. 

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Smart meter benefits: the enabling properties of smart meters to transform customer relationships

The smart meter rollout in GB has been besieged with problems, so the smart meter consultation currently underway in GB is necessary. However, completing a market-wide rollout programme is just one area to address. Stimulating innovation to unlock the longer-term benefits that smart meters undoubtedly enable and communicating these benefits and the transformational potential for customer relationships is also key to a successful future energy eco-system. 

A fresh injection to the GB smart meter rollout  

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Accelerating the transition to 'new heat' top of the agenda at the biggest ever Delta-EE European Heat Summit

It was an inspiring two days at the Delta-EE European Heat Summit in London last week when close to 100 delegates from across the heating sector were brought together in an exciting programme spanning start-ups to energy giants and topics as diverse as hydrogen networks, smart electric heating controls and heat-as-a-service.

With this year’s Summit, it seems to us at Delta-EE that we have reached a tipping point in the decarbonisation debate. Decarbonising new build across Europe is looking increasingly positive, and though retrofit remains the largest challenge, the Summit demonstrated that there is a wealth of technologies, business models and proposition ideas that – targeted at the right sectors – promise to overcome some of this challenge.

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OVO's Plan Zero: transforming the energy system

OVO’s ‘Future of Energy’ event at the Tate Modern on the South Bank in London was ostensibly about celebrating the company’s 10 year anniversary – in which the company, founded by CEO Stephen Fitzpatrick, has grown to around 1.5 million. 

With the announced acquisition of the SSE retail customer base of 3.5 million pending – subject to regulatory approval as Fitzpatrick was at pains to point out – OVO will become the second largest energy supplier in the UK with circa 5 million customers - quite a journey and something to be celebrated for sure.  The company has relentlessly focused on customer service and experience, and its success in doing so shines through in its customer growth and the numerous customer service or industry awards it was won over the years.  

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Is electric vehicle range anxiety increasing carbon emissions?

A recent study from Imperial College London, in partnership with UK energy company Drax Group, investigated the green credentials of different types of vehicles, to put to bed the question “are EVs genuinely better for the environment?”

It concluded that, yes, going electric is definitely a win for reducing emissions. However, the premium electric models coming to market today have a considerably greater carbon footprint than the electric models of the past. I want to explore this market development further; could it be that customer desire for range will actually drive up carbon emissions?

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The New Energy Letter: August 2019

How to avoid the fate of Kodak in the energy transition?

Kodak didn’t fail because it didn’t know about digital cameras. In fact, it developed one of the first consumer digital cameras and in 2005 was the largest seller of digital cameras in the US. But in 2011 its share price fell by 80%, and in 2012 it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

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How the transition to new heat is disrupting the heating market and creating opportunities

We are at a pivotal time for the heating market in Europe, as the transition from ‘old’ to ‘new’ heat gains traction.

The decarbonisation agenda is finally placing heat at its centre in many markets. The heating market is seeing more disruption than ever before, as new market players compete with the incumbents, new business models and propositions emerge, traditional routes to market are turned on their heads, and technology ecosystems evolve. 

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The Business of Being an Aggregator

We’re at a tipping point in how electricity systems are balanced. Traditionally, supply and demand have been matched by turning large power plants up and down, with the occasional very large industrial customer, like a steel works, containing its demand to help balance the system. But over the last ten years we’ve seen a new breed of businesses – aggregators – bringing together hundreds and thousands of distributed assets to help the electricity systems stay balanced.

We’ve seen more and more aggregators emerging as markets have opened to distributed portfolios, with more than 70 appearing across Europe. Delta-ee Director Jon Slowe suggests “we are past the tipping point of this being a distinct sector in the energy market and there will be lots more action and development over the next years”.

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Households MADE to deliver the energy transition

Managing domestic energy assets for the benefit of households and networks

Homes of the future will increasingly have multiple energy assets such as electric vehicles (EVs), , solar PV and battery storage systems. The MADE (Multi Asset Demand Execution) project is all about understanding how to manage these multiple energy assets in a way that is both beneficial to the homeowner and the energy networks.

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The epic battle for new energy dominance

We often get asked questions like “Do you think Amazon will acquire an energy supplier?”, “What will BMW’s EV charging strategy be?” and “Are the oil majors really interested in new energy? and we have a lot to say about each of them. However, given the pace at which the energy transition is happening – with opportunistic acquisitions, product launches and partnerships springing up in places that would have seemed unthinkable a year or two ago - probably the only answer we can give to these questions with absolute certainty right now is to “expect the unexpected”. We certainly try to.

Having said that, Europe’s oil majors would currently appear to be best placed in the battle to capture the new energy customer. Given that we recently conducted a comprehensive review of the activities of new market entrants in this space – we can say that with confidence. The oil majors have a combination of strategic need and financial strength which is unmatched at this moment in time. As such, we have little doubt that the likes of Shell and Total will continue to be highly active as the new energy market develops, and we fully expect some of their rivals (BP, Eni, etc.) to increase their activity too.

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