Energy Management Software Firms Get Smarter About Partnerships
Two years ago, there was a flurry of partnership activity in the energy management software market as firms such as CA Technologies, Carbon Systems and Hara teamed up with large global consulting firms and systems integrators such as Fujitsu, Infosys and URS. With many of the software firms short on a global delivery network, it was hoped these partnerships would provide the necessary platform to deliver large scale enterprise-wide implementations. So, how did that work out?
Since the start of 2011, there have been some sizeable deals. In March 2012, Carbon Systems won a contract with Microsoft to provide its software to the IT giant's 600 facilities across 110 countries and in 2011, Verisae won a contract to provide its application to the multi-billion dollar elevator manufacturer, ThyssenKrupp Elevator Americas. While there are certainly firms actively investing in enterprise-wide solutions, our 2012 global survey of energy leaders showed this applied to less than 25% of large corporates. Facing budgetary constraints, competition from other projects and disengaged CFOs, most firms still focus on single site or multi-site deployments of this type of software.
In response to this trend, energy management software firms have established a new wave of partnerships with energy services firms. Energy services firms have a client-base already committed to energy management and tend to work more at the sub-enterprise scale for multi-national clients. As an example, in November 2012, JouleX partnered with the Energy Solutions Group (ESG) which is the parent company for Building Automation Solutions and Marsh Systems. Similarly, EnergyICT has established partnerships with energy services firms Matrix and SEDAC Energy Management.
For most corporates, energy management is an iterative journey where new services or solutions are introduced and expanded one-by-one. Only once they have proven a success will firms make the next investment. Through teaming up with energy services firms, energy management software firms can gain the foothold necessary before looking to roll-out their product at scale.