In March of 2018, Schneider Electric’s NEO Network™ team hosted a members roundtable in Amsterdam. During this interactive gathering, NEO Network members and Schneider Electric energy market experts discussed the main trends in the European renewable power purchase agreement (PPA) market, developments in aggregation with a case study from global law firm Bird & Bird, and ended the day with a testimonial from a current NEO Network member currently in the process of executing a PPA in Europe.
Aggregation was a topic of particular interest to the group, with commercial and industrial (C&I) members voicing a variety of motivations. For companies with smaller load, or those just beginning to explore renewable PPAs, aggregation can provide access to PPA opportunities that may otherwise be out of reach. Further, aggregation can create economies of scale for cost savings, as well as grant companies quicker access to multiple projects. The main concerns for C&I NEO Network members were around the minimum volume required to join an aggregation consortium, and the risk allocation among participants. It was clear that flexible options are needed to help position and manage risk.
Developers are equally interested in this strategy. For them, aggregation unlocks access to a wider number of C&I offtakers, and it may be a way to diversify and reduce risk. On either side of the coin, aggregation acts as a way for developers and corporates alike to bypass market constraints and gain more value out of a renewable energy agreement. Attendees of the roundtable had the exclusive benefit of being briefed on the strategy behind the aggregation projects that the NEO Network team is currently finalizing, which allow participating C&Is to sign short-term PPAs at very competitive prices.
Robbert Slooten, an active voice in the corporate renewables discussion and Global Sustainability Program Manager at Philips Lightning, attended the event. His recently published LinkedIn article, Listening to the Needs of the Renewable Energy Buyer, prompted the opening discussion at the roundtable. In this article, he spoke on behalf of all corporate consumers of renewable energy in his plea for a simpler way to buy renewables—and the dream of an ‘Amazon-like’ renewable buying platform. His proposed vision of a one-stop-shop where companies can compare global renewable electricity options may not be far off. The best option for organizations in today’s market environment is to begin engaging in platforms, such as the NEO Network, that exist to simplify and accelerate decision-making on corporate renewable energy purchases.
In addition to exclusive roundtable events, NEO Network members enjoy workshops and expert-led webinars at a regular cadence. To learn more about how joining the NEO Network can accelerate your company’s sustainability and energy goals, visit us at www.neonetworkexchange.com or contact us today for a personal demo.