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Charmaine leads the consultancy business, focusing on new business and capability development. Previously a Principal Analyst for Delta-EE’s New Energy Business Model Service, she has over 16 years’ experience in consultancy and energy companies. Her particular experience is with product and service innovation in the renewable energy and energy retail sector. Prior to joining Delta-EE in July 2017, she spent 5 years at a UK supplier, growing product lines and sales channels.

Charmaine holds an Honours degree in Geography from the University of Cambridge and sits on the IET Energy Policy Panel.

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Continued optimism, confidence and positivity – a mantra for the new energy world in 2021

It feels like we are starting 2021 with some cautious optimism - perhaps not as much as we would have liked, but I for one, am upbeat. Whilst Covid-19 continues in waves, there remains much to be positive about for us in the new energy sector.

Governments and companies have all taken steps or reported news of continued optimism, which against the wider macro and micro global news is very welcome. Commercially we have seen:

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Can the transition to new energy happen fast enough? A view from 2019 into 2020

This time last year we talked about the energy industry being on the cusp of change.

Our general feeling was that the tipping point for new energy had come – and we think events in 2019, such as the rise of climate change protests (for example, Extinction Rebellion) and increasing adoption of Net Zero targets, have shown this to be true.

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Platforms: an essential part of the energy system

Platforms are one of the hot topics in the new energy sector. There are platforms which connect buyers and sellers such as for installing heating appliances or auto-switching, which interrupts the traditional energy retail-customer relationship. And there are those which connect, link and even manage large numbers of energy assets together such as hot water tanks, electric vehicles and batteries.

But why are platforms such a hot topic today?

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UK’s Smart Future Cities – where are the opportunities?

The UK has an opportunity to incorporate smart technology and Internet of Things (IoT) into its physical, energy and transport infrastructure, to improve public services and the overall quality of life for its citizens. Over the past few years, the National Government and UK Local Authorities (LA) have been taking proactive steps to implement and support this smart city transition, with key cities such as Bristol, London and Manchester pledging carbon neutrality by 2050 or earlier.

City-wide and integrated approach

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Auto-switchers - more than a passing fad?

It’s already been 18 months since we wrote about the emergence of what we believed could be an important new trend: the growth of auto-switching services. Since then, we have watched as a series of new players has begun playing this new game. Customers continue to sign up – perhaps as many as 200,000 across Europe – and we’ve spotted no fewer than twenty auto-switchers across the world, several of whom are increasingly well funded. We have revisited this intriguing trend in some recent research, increasingly convinced that incumbents need to start taking the threat seriously.

For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, auto-switchers are next-generation price comparison sites, reimagining the one-off, manual tariff switching services that companies like GoCompare, Moneysupermarket and Selectra offer residential energy users. Typically, you register your home and criteria online and the auto-switcher will run an algorithm, or even use AI, to find the best deal on the market to suit your preferences (price savings, service, green) then switch you whenever it flags up that savings can be had. Timings & authorisation vary, but the idea is that you only ever personally need to take action once at the start (unless to update preferences) then forever live in complete security that the hassle of switching is removed from your To Do list forever. Some services operate membership fees (Flipper) and others rely on commission (comparison sites, Labrador) or optional hardware (June), but all share the goal of permanently soothing the perennial consumer headache that is finding the best supplier.

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Is investment an indicator of future success?

The German football team is out of the World Cup. Was it what you expected? Unlikely. Had you predicted this would happen based on the players selected, Joachim Löw’s ability to coach, or the huge investments made to secure a top-tier national squad? Probably not.

As we published the ‘New Energy’ Business Model Service’s latest report, this got me thinking about who is investing in what within ‘New Energy’ and if how much you invest in something is really an indication of future success?

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1595 Hits

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