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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.

What’s hot from Mostra MCE?

Mostra MCE is a biennial trade fair in Milan covering heating, cooling, water and energy – while having a strong focus on the Italian market, it’s a major international event.  Maria Synodi from our Connected Home team and I had the opportunity to visit and we enjoyed meeting many of our subscribers and industry contacts there (and also escaping from the snow in Edinburgh!).

In this short blog we share some of the things we learnt, and hope you find it useful. As always, we welcome your feedback and questions so please feel free to contact us directly.

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EUW 2017: The hot topics

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.

Best Presentation?

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Customer data analytics enables ‘mass personalisation'

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

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

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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