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We needed someone to show us how to do it properly.

Interview with Thomas Kiwus, enercity AG

Hello Thomas. This is quite the opposite of a TV crime show: nothing you say can or will be used against you. You can say anything you want.

Sounds good to me.

What was the challenge or problem back then?

When Ambrosys came on board, the initiative had been running for about a year. My team and I had been working on a business model with different people. And now we wanted to deepen this business model with a strategic partner who was familiar with data management, data analytics and climate management: What can this business model look like, how do we position ourselves on the market with it?

Can you tell us what the business model actually was?

It was about climate neutrality management, based on an energy management system, as a service for SMEs.

So: SMEs that fancy becoming climate-neutral but don't know exactly how to do it can contact enercity. A service that goes beyond the supply of energy. Right?

Exactly. Let me dig in: enercity already offered the energy management system. Climate management would have been the next step, the addition of a climate neutrality strategy for the company, derived from the data from the energy management system, combined with other data that had to be added in accordance with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol scope two and three.

 

What was the reason Ambrosys was brought in?

The crosscheck for the concept of "climate management based on or as an add-on to an energy management system" and the validation and adjustment of the business case and the relevant database.
We needed a partner with whom the whole thing could be fleshed out. Ambrosys would have been the ideal platform builder for enercity, bringing the data together in a triangle with the provider of the energy management system and Emyze and making it reasonably exploitable for businesses on an intelligent platform.

Emyze is an app, I got it on my cell phone. Depending on my lifestyle, I enter my energy-related data into it and it calculates my footprint. Is that right?

Exactly. The idea was to also use the app to feed data from employees of client companies into this climate neutrality strategy model, so that we can then provide the companies with relevant data.

Let me ask you again: Why Ambrosys in particular?

We got to know Ambrosys as a knowledgeable and creative partner - who brings knowledge that enercity lacked at the time. We also didn't have the resources available in our own company to set something like this up. Ambrosys would have been a good strategic partner, also in view of the fact that we have municipal utilities, cities and local authorities as customers. Our energy management system, which we offer to municipal utilities, should also show in simulations how the city will change if we invest in building refurbishment, in PV systems, in large heat pumps, in whatever - in other words, help calculate the climate neutrality of a city.

Why did you trust Ambrosys with this simulation?

Ambrosys already had comparative projects with Storengy. For us, this meant that Ambrosys really knows its way around the technology, renewables and the corresponding data. I knew from my time at Stromnetz Berlin that Ambrosys was working on setting up an asset management system there, a data model for the many electrical components of lines and substations, so to speak. So that we could track and build better in the future. That's how I knew they could do it. They have the basis, the expertise and the knowledge to build such platforms. And the network too.

At the time, the question was also: do we perhaps go into cooperation with a start-up that has to start from scratch, or with a large company that has already come a long way in this area? Both would have been very expensive.

Well, for the time being, it wasn't about building platforms, but ...

... a business model for the platform strategy with a business model canvas behind it.

What qualifies a company that, like Ambrosys, actually comes from a technical background for delivering added value to business models?

You have to know the market and the solutions that are market standards, i.e. the platform solution and how it is structured and, of course, what data is relevant. In order to then use algorithms to automate the whole thing to such an extent that companies see the great added value of no longer having to cling to their Excel solution. Because they still do that in many places.

Yes, or to punch cards.

I don't think they do that any more. Excel solutions are already the worst case. I think they still use paper sheets in the power plants, and in the end everything is typed into Excel. There are much, much better solutions today.

To the best of your knowledge, what would you recommend Ambrosys for?

For conceptual work: for example, what a concept could look like for a platform to provide climate neutrality advice; what data is relevant there. To act as a partner in the design of a business model and a strategy. But then also to take over the implementation.

Thank you very much, Thomas. Good luck with everything!

Thank you. I hope you were able to get something out of it. Take care. Bye.

 

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