Luigi Ghiani, Fabia Miorelli, Archishman Bose, Miguel Hernandez
Uncovered Need and Potential Market
Renewable energy technology (RET) penetration needs to increase in developing countries. In developed countries, additionally, energy efficiency improvement is needed for a more sustainable future. The initial investment in such technologies is usually very high, but profitable in the medium-long run. Many barriers slow down the technology spread, like the low income of households, insufficient awareness of the economic potential of the energy resources that can be locally exploited or of the incentives, together with the lack of information about local suppliers.
In this context, it is then possible to identify some potential partners, that could benefit from technology, but lack information or possibility to invest. On the other side, potential investors can be encouraged to invest in energy technologies, because it is a relatively safe investment, in assets that can be eventually reallocated, and profitable especially in countries with incentives and energy policies. Social and environmental commitment can also play a key role, especially if investors are shown real figures of the impact they can have.
Objectives of the Proposal
Resource owners and investors all over the world, are not in contact yet, but they could share benefits from the mentioned investments. The main objectives are to:
- encourage investments in sustainable energy technologies, by promoting them as a profitable business opportunity, creating value for four parties (investors, resource owners, suppliers/manufacturers, Internet Platform);
- faster and deeper spread of RET and energy efficiency improvement technologies through economies of sharing and reducing the emissions;
- encourage creation of energy communities, for example in rural areas, incrementing the distributed generation facilities and increasing the energy access ratio;
- improvement of the quality and the efficiency of buildings with ad-hoc solutions certified by suppliers, reducing the total energy consumption and the urban pollution for distributed heating systems;
- reduce some of the most significant soft cost contributors, namely Supply Chain Costs, Costumer Acquisition, Installer/Developer Profit;
The proposal is to develop an Internet Platform, to match investors, potential partners and suppliers. The platform acts like a matching network, information database and as a consultancy service. No prior knowledge is needed by the customers, but rather just provide data about what they have: pictures of the house, its rooftop, or of their garden, crops they grow, cattle, unused space, etc. The platform will be used for user friendly data collection and, on the other side, investors will be guided about possible investments, per their preferences (payback time, risk, NPV etc.). The platform will:
- provide matches, elaborating data and collecting information of both parties;
- provide consultancy according to different levels of service provided: local legislation and policies analysis, full arrangement of the match and of
- provide information of the partners who joined nearby, to put new potential partners in contact with them and to ask for information/feedback on the experience;
- provide an interactive map: containing information of local supplier of technologies, to benchmark prices, quality and to collect customer’s feedback. Eventually the platform can arrange all the installation process with them and create partnerships;
- offer a solution that addresses the implementation of digital technologies and decrease of soft costs, as well as integrates social economies for affordable energy.