Smart Energy Systems Round Table & Business Community in Milan

For the 2nd time in 2015, the EIT Digital Smart Energy Systems Business Community brought together actors from industry, agile startup scene and EIT innovation projects. On July 7th, they discussed about collaborations and investments in their businesses at Talent Garden in Milan.

Round Table „Energy & Data“

Selected experts from EngieEnelCREATE-NETDeutsche TelekomTelecom ItaliaCefrielCEA, Engineering and SecurityMatters examined opportunities and threats around the theme „Energy & Data“.

The discussion highlighted that the market of ICT solutions for smart energy systems has a very good growth potential – currently 7% per year and an estimated size of 17 billion dollars in 2024 – while it presents a number of challenges for the actors, in particular startups, in this field.  The following points emerged clearly from the discussion:

  • The heterogeneity of member state-level regulations and policies causes market fragmentation and different level of support of the smart energy systems vision across European countries.
  • Ensuring a robust and resilient smart grid, a holistic approach towards security is essential. Clearly, privacy has to become part of the global security picture.
  • Big data technology and services can have a big impact in the field. Yet, this requires embedding a lot of engineering knowledge. Among potential applications, usage of big data for enhancing grid's stability and for sizing distributed generation present emerged as appealing use cases.
  • In terms of infrastructure, the rollout of digital meters for energy consumption – for both electricity and gas – needs to be advanced. Open standards and open data models are required for ensuring interoperability.

Startup pitches to experts

To discuss opportunities of collaboration, six coached startups from EIT Digital Business Development Accelerator BDA pitched in front of the invited community. These startups were:

To improve the contact with the Italian startup ecosystem the recently founded Enel accelerator INCENSE was invited to let two startups from his program pitch at the event: Nozomi Networks and ZenUp.

"Again, we saw great pitches today. But they are only the ice breaker since afterwards startups and industry partners easily find the right person to discuss follow-up actions – be it deals or common projects", said Dr. Heiko Lehmann from Deutsche Telekom, Action Line Leader Smart Energy Systems. Social aperitif and networking dinner formed the frame for the evening.

Around ten participants of the Business Community event took the chance to explore the EXPO 2015 at Fiera Milano the follwing day. Besides the Enel pavilion with its smart grid show room, several country pavilions have been visited.

Upcoming Events of the Smart Energy Systems Action Line & Business Community:

  • SES action line event on September 4th in the Spanish pavillon at EXPO 2015 Milano.
  • SES End-Of-Year Event (3rd Business Community and round table as well as Idea Challenge Final SES) on November 4th in Berlin. 

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