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Andy’s primary responsibility is the ongoing development of Delta-ee’s research services and consulting offerings.  He established Delta-ee's ‘Energy Services in Europe’ Summit and leads our activities in this knowledge area.  He has over 20 years’ experience in the energy industry, predominantly with Wood Mackenzie where he held a number of roles in research, consulting and business development.  He has extensive consulting experience, gained from managing market studies, strategy advice and transaction support projects for industrial and financial clients.  Prior to Wood Mackenzie, Andy had roles with Wefa Energy and also BP Oil International, in both the UK and Germany.

EUW 2017: The hot topics

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It’s been a fascinating few days in Amsterdam at European Utility Week 2017 and it has been great to be able to talk to so many of our clients and friends in the industry, so we wanted to share some of takeaways from the event. In our view it remains the most important ‘new energy’ event in the European calendar and we are pleased to be associated with it as a Game Changing sponsor.

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Customer data analytics enables ‘mass personalisation'

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Customer data analytics enables ‘mass personalisation’

I attended European Utility Week in Barcelona last week and one of my takeaways was the growing presence and visibility of companies developing data analytics solutions.  It’s confirmation of the trend we have seen for some time at Delta-ee, that customer data analytics is becoming an essential part of key business decisions and is fundamental to the way suppliers are changing the way they engage with their customers.

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Fear or greed? What’s the stronger motivation for energy retailers to develop their storage propositions?

Energy storage has been the hot topic in the distributed energy industry since Tesla made its move into stationary storage a couple of years ago.  As is often the case with ‘new’ technology, the headlines and the hype has been quite far ahead of the reality.

The reality in Europe today is that behind-the-meter (BTM) battery storage markets remain very small in most countries.  Market growth is mainly concentrated in just three countries: Germany, Italy and the UK.  And Germany is easily the biggest market – it accounts for over 90% of the total European market.  So the impact to date on most European energy retailers is very limited.

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“Telenergy” – stronger together: why and how energy retailers and telecom operators should work together

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Convergence between energy, IoT, connectivity and telecoms is inevitably leading the growth of a new domain: ‘telenergy’. But energy retailers seem very fearful of partnering with telcos – it’s “dancing with the devil” and will open the route to telcos to “steal my customers”.

Yet this fear could be unfounded and wrong, and the energy retail industry might be missing a big opportunity as a result. Delta-ee are working with Pierrick Hamon, formerly EVP of Home & Convergence in the telco sector, to help our clients really understand and explore the possibility of telenergy partnerships. Read on to find out more, and download our Whitepaper. 

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Worcester, Bosch Group ‘Environment 2020’ awards luncheon – recognising the critical role of installers in a transforming heating market

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I had the pleasure yesterday of being invited by Worcester, Bosch Group to attend their ‘Environment 2020’ annual awards luncheon.  Now in its 15th year this event is an annual competition organised to recognise and reward installers who take an environmentally responsible approach to their work.  Not only did I present the awards to nine worthy winners, but I also had the opportunity to have my picture taken with Bobby the Boiler who gave the awards in the children’s art competition. Some of the projects were interesting pairings of traditional heating and hot water sources with renewables technologies.  I presented a few findings from Microgen Insight Service, encouraging installers to be open to working with new technologies and business models.  Low carbon and renewable technologies will be a big part of the future heating market. There are question marks about how quickly and to what degree, but the direction of travel is clear.  It depends on policy and the right products being available – but regardless of these, installers have a critical role to play to help grow the market.At the event, I heard anecdotal evidence that customers are actually starting to ask installers for their preferred smart thermostat or control system – something that would never have been heard of in the past when customers basically took what their installer gave them. But with the advent of high profile products from utilities (eg British Gas Hive), manufacturers (eg Worcester, Bosch Group Wave) and start-ups (eg Nest, acquired by Google), customers are becoming aware and informed. This supports what Delta-ee has been saying to our clients for some time, that there is the potential for disintermediation in the energy value chain.  And, depending on a company’s existing routes to market and brand positioning, there could be big opportunities or threats. We see this as a key theme in the distributed energy market, and different aspects are examined in detail in both our Connected Home Service and Energy Services Innovation research.There seemed to be mixed views regarding the RHI, with some thinking that it still has promise and could lead to more customers buying low carbon products but others believe it to be too complex and the RHI simply doesn’t help many customers with their main problem: upfront cost.  Delta-ee are still cautiously optimistic, but industry support and promotion of the RHI scheme remains low key.  I’ve noticed, for example, that in manufacturers’ product brochures the RHI sometimes appears almost as a footnote. For the RHI to have an impact, it needs a much stronger push than that. For our latest research into customer awareness of the RHI see Jennifer’s recent blog on our RHI tracker.   If you want to know more details about the Worcester, Bosch Group 2014 award winners and their projects, get in touch with me.Many thanks to Worcester, Bosch Group for the invitation to attend the event and visit their factory.  It’s good to see the industry celebrating success and the high quality work from their installers, who have a vital role to play in the transforming energy market.
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Useful Insights from ISH 2015 - Our Top 10

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Throughout the week of 10-13th March, I, along with colleagues from our Micro-CHP, Heat Pump, Roadmap, Connected Home and Distributed Power research teams, attended the 2015 ISH trade fair – Europe’s largest heating / hot water exhibition.ISH is a fantastic opportunity to get comprehensive insight into the EU heating industry and we all enjoyed meeting many of our clients and industry contacts there. I’ve distilled down the team’s combined insights into the following Top 10 Useful Insights: Connectivity is now in the mainstream. Everybody seems to have apps and internet connectivity nowadays. Controls are becoming easier to use, and remote service or diagnostics from installers are becoming more widespread.Product range homogenisation. It’s increasingly hard for manufacturers to differentiate on the basis of their product portfolio. The product ranges on display from the big boiler companies were almost exactly the same.Manufacturers are trying to differentiate using design styling. Some manufacturers are trying to make products look different (prettier?) from the usual bland white boxes. There were many much nicer-looking systems around eg Bosch had some ‘new’ boilers that looked a bit like an iPhone!Hybrid heat pumps were everywhere. Only very few manufacturers did not have a hybrid on their stand, and some, like Viessmann are putting a lot of emphasis on these systems.Energy labels were omnipresent. Manufacturers have put a lot of effort into making their products ERP and Energy Label ready for 2015. While policy makers have high hopes for the impact on customers decision making, Delta-ee is quite cautious: the labels may send difficult to explain messages to customers eg why should a customer buy an “A+”-labelled HP water heater if they can buy an “A”-labelled direct electric water heater for a fraction of the price? Contact Lindsay Sugden if you want to find out about Delta-ee’s new research into the impact of ERP and the Energy Label on the market into 2016.An absence of truly new technology on show. We saw just different “flavours” or “clones” of existing technologies: heat pump, CHP, boiler, smart home devices, PV, solar thermal, battery.Installation is getting less complex and more ‘plug and play’. Products are more integrated than they used to be and installers have to think less with regards to system design. Also the product controls are being improved for end users and installers. We saw a good example from Junkers/Buderus, where there are now two control interfaces on each system: one limited to basics for the end-user (directly accessible on the front of the system) and one with all the detailed control parameters for the installer.The boiler (and heat pump) manufacturers start to move towards ‘smart’ or ‘connected’ home. They are all in the ‘smart’ or ‘connected’ game now – although mainly they are playing catch up with specialist vendors who are the market leaders.Despite the high profile of connectivity, we didn’t see any major ‘smart’ innovations. Although, compared with ISH 2013, remote diagnostics for installers has become a stronger theme and a focus for some manufacturers.What could be the big things in ISH 2017? Our picks are:Connected devices providing remote diagnostics and controlProducts that provide independence from grid prices eg PV self-consumption combined with battery storageFuel cells and power-to-gas Hope you enjoy this listing and as always we’ll be happy to hear what you think. If you want more detail on any of the above contact me.   
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