Lay the groundwork

Research by Pinsent Masons has revealed that energy technology bolt-ons will underpin the future of the global energy industry as companies respond to the seismic shift in electricity distribution and supply, consumer demand and to capitalise on the smart energy revolution.

The survey of 250 senior executives at Asia Pacific and EMEA-headquartered energy and energy investment companies showed that 90 per cent of energy companies are actively seeking a smart energy technology joint venture or acquisition.

Pinsent Masons says this signals a step change for the global energy industry as companies strive to keep up with the rapid pace of change in consumer energy consumption behaviour, shifts in government policy and to improve security of supply.

The findings of Hungry for change: Investing in a smarter energy future show investors and energy companies prioritising smart meters, new methods of harnessing surplus power and in-house development of data analytics technology within the next two years while cloud management systems and virtual power plants will see a surge of investment in six years.

Research also found 85 per cent of respondents expect M&A to increase in the next 12 months, with Germany, China and the UK revealed as the top three target countries for smart energy investment for energy companies and investors.

Energy partner at Pinsent Masons, Ian McCarlie, added: “Cloud-based management and virtual power plants are high on the agenda, but this is the destination not the starting point. The groundwork must be laid with investment into smart meters, battery storage and data analytics to build a sustainable, resilient and profitable energy industry.”