Electric Process Heaters Market: Troubleshooting Market Challenges and Identifying Growth Avenues
Energy Sector Outlook
The United States is a leader in the production, supply, and consumption of energy. Growing consumer demand and increasing transition to a low-carbon economy make the United States one of the world’s most attractive markets. To meet the current energy transition, companies will need to adapt to the trends that will shape the energy sector in the coming years. Also, identifying hidden opportunities in the market and keeping a close watch on market trends and industry updates are becoming inevitable for companies in the energy sector to succeed in the long-run.
The client is an energy company based out of the United States. The company produces electricity from clean energy sources including wind, solar, hydropower, geothermal, and nuclear power.
Our client, an energy company, was looking to carry out a market trend analysis to stay informed about the present as well as the long-term forecasts of the market. Through Infiniti’s trend analysis engagement, they wanted to gain a clear perspective of the current energy trends, identify energy resources leveraged leading US-based companies, and evaluate the factors influencing the decision-making process of customers.
In addition, they wanted to tackle challenges such as:
Transition from traditional to intelligent grids:
Although traditional electricity grids were appropriate to avoid overloads in the past, the rising number of decentralized energy generators demanded a more versatile approach to match supply and demand. The client also noted that leading companies in the US energy sector have started investing into smart grids to tackle this challenge. With Infiniti’s market trend analysis solution, the client wanted to identify the cost-effective technologies leveraged by the top companies in the US energy sector to prevent costly outages.
Rising investment in holistic digital customer experience:
With the proliferation of smartphones, major companies in the energy sector are already launching mobile applications through which their customers can manage their plans, make payments, and receive notifications. In order to gain a competitive edge, the client wanted to offer a consistent, user-friendly journey for their customers. To do so, they wanted to identify digital technologies gaining popularity in the US energy sector.
The experts at Infiniti Research followed a three-phased approach that involved:
Market intelligence engagement to assess the company’s long-time profitability, identify business gaps, and evaluate profitable market opportunities.
Market trend analysis to identify the latest trends in the US energy sector and foresee potential growth opportunities.
Market scanning and monitoring analysis to stay on top of market changes and industry developments.
The insights obtained from Infiniti’s trend analysis engagement helped the energy sector client to adapt to market trends and gain a competitive edge. Also, by thoroughly evaluating the company’s past sales data, the experts helped the client to identify the factors that affected their profit margins. By investing into cost-effective technologies like smart grids, they were able to reduce energy waste and prevent costly outages before they actually occur.
The experts also helped the client to identify the digital technologies gaining popularity in the US energy sector. By investing into digital technologies, they were able to strengthen their competitive position in a market, improve customer satisfaction, boost customer retention, and increase revenues.
Within two years of leveraging our trend analysis solution, the energy sector client was able to decrease CO2 emissions and reduce production costs by 27%.
Although it is common in several industries to perceive digitization as a threat, it does not hold true for the energy sector. Energy industry experts believe that digitalization could prove key in addressing several pressing challenges in Germany’s energy sector. In Germany, power consumption is poised to increase due to the electrification of transport, heating, and the rise in industrial processes. Furthermore, the share of renewable energy derived is also on the rise. Even if energy efficiency grows in Germany’s energy sector, the demand for electrical power is expected to grow. Moreover, Additionally, Germany will have to electrify more industrial processes to ensure that the country’s ambitious targets to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases are met. This could considerably increase the demand for power in the region.
Consequently, this results in the power supply become highly volatile in the region and making it challenging to manage and balance the power system. Experts at Infiniti Research believe that digitization can act as a catalyst to combat such challenges and prepare the German energy sector for the future.
Handle growing complexity
The way power is produced and distributed is largely changing. Although renewable energy is an effective way to produce energy, they cause increasing volatility and complexity. Also, there is an increase in the number of players at both ends of the power line. Using digital platforms, the energy sector can handle these complexities and promote new forms of collaborations and encourage better trading relations.
Matching demand and supply
Power consumption is commonly a linear process. However, this pattern is set to change with smart power-consuming devices. Smart power consumption devices are constantly connected and leverage the internet in order to transmit information end-to-end. The information available can make smart devices to enhance their performance by optimizing their own consumption. This helps balances the overall power load.
Managing surplus power
The ongoing decentralization of power generation in the energy sector will result in surplus power being generated. This energy must be put to immediate use or must be stored. The growing surpluses can be handled by creating heat, producing synthesized heat, storing in batteries, using smart consumption to match peaks in supply, or through smart distribution that can be enabled through digital platforms.
This year seems to be extremely promising for the renewable energy sector. With an increasing number of nations and organizations embracing sustainable techniques for energy generation, new renewable energy trends are bound to gain momentum. In fact, renewables are now a mainstream option in the power sector in nearly all parts of the world. Renewable energy technologies have also proven to be reliable and now provide the lowest-cost power generation options in many situations. Based on the global trends in renewable energy, our industry experts have curated some of the biggest renewable energy trends that are likely to make an impact in 2019.
Renewable energy trends
One of the key renewable energy trends that are increasingly gaining popularity right now is energy storage. It plays a vital role in balancing the demand and supply of power and also has the power to tackle intermittency issues of renewable energy. By pairing a storage system with a renewable energy source, smooth and steady power supply can be ensured even when the weather conditions are not optimal for energy generation. Batteries are the most common storage devices used in renewable energy systems. The use of these devices is seeing an increasing trend on both residential as well as commercial level.
Deployment of microgrids
Microgrids are local energy grids that have the power to operate either autonomously or when connected to a larger traditional grid. Such renewable energy industry trends are extremely favored due to their ability to offer energy independence, efficiency, and protection during emergencies. Furthermore, artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities can be used with microgrid controllers for continuous improvement of operations.
Grid parity and declining costs
Grid parity occurs when an alternative energy source can generate power at a cost and performance level that is equal to or lesser than electricity generated from conventional methods. Solar and wind energy have reached parity in both price and performance in many regions, and new technologies continue to optimize their competitive edge. Moreover, traditional models of large, top-down and centrally distributed energy production are being replaced by renewable energy trends that are modular, consumer-driven and evenly distributed power generation.
Renewable energy trends in developing countries
When talking about exciting new renewable energy trends and innovations, we often overlook the fact that a significant percentage of the world’s population remains without access to energy at all. While some have unreliable or prohibitively expensive energy sources, others remain without access to energy at all. Although politics often stand in the way of progress, new energy technologies and commitments to promote renewable energy trends from international groups like the World Bank are laying a foundation for providing energy access to developing countries. With their ever-improving cost and performance metrics, we can expect to see renewable energy trends and innovations increasingly deployed to provide power to developing nations.
Market Research Solution for a Solar Panel Manufacturer
With the rapidly expanding environmental awareness and gradual decline in the cost of solar installations, the US solar energy industry has witnessed a steady growth over the years. But, despite the massive growth of the solar industry, there are still several barriers that could hold solar energy companies back. Therefore, for companies who are new to the solar energy industry, it becomes imperative to conduct market research to identify the opportunities and challenges facing the solar energy industry.
The client is a solar panel manufacturer based out of the United Kingdom. The client was looking to expand to the US solar energy industry. However, before investing huge capital into the project, the client wanted to gain detailed insights into the US solar energy market. Also, before expanding into the new market, they wanted to understand the challenges facing the US solar energy industry and overcome them by devising value maximization strategies.
Other key challenges faced by the US solar energy industry were:
Solar energy industry challenge #1
International competition and legality: The client noted that dealing with international competition and legal compliance were major challenges faced by solar panel suppliers in the US. Therefore, the client wanted to understand the changing laws and policies in the US energy market that could impact their growth.
Solar energy industry challenge #2
Need for modernizing grid infrastructure: This was another challenge faced by solar panel manufacturers. The client, therefore, wanted to identify the latest technologies and innovations implemented by the key player in the US solar energy industry. By doing so, they wanted to make improvements in their grid infrastructure by using technologies, equipment, and controls.
Solar energy industry challenge #3
Supply-demand challenges: As the solar panel installation began to grow in the US market, many leading solar panel suppliers started producing solar panels in huge quantity. This eventually created an oversupply of solar panels. Also, with this supply-demand mismatch, major solar panel manufacturers witnessed a huge decline in their net profit margins. The client, therefore, did not wish to take a chance. By understanding the market dynamism and requirements, they wanted to better manage production and supply.
Solutions Offered and Value Delivered
The experts at Infiniti Research conducted a thorough analysis of the US solar energy industry. The experts analyzed the top ten solar panel manufacturers in the US. The factors such as the latest innovations in design, average sales rate for the past 5 years, and their market position were taken into consideration. The experts also analyzed market potential for solar panel manufacturers and identified the key market entry barriers.
With Infiniti’s market research solution, the company in the solar energy industry was able to understand the market entry barriers and devise well-informed market expansion plans to enter the US solar energy market. Infiniti’s market research solution also helped the client to understand the latest technological innovations and trends in the market. This helped them to adapt to innovations in the market and make improvements in grid infrastructure. Furthermore, with Infiniti’s market research solution, they were able to easily adapt to the changing laws and regulations.
Also, the insights obtained from Infiniti’s market research solution helped the client to understand their competitors’ sales rate and make an accurate prediction about the potential market demand. This helped the company in the solar energy industry to establish a foothold in the US solar energy market and exceed their sales expectations within the course of one year.
Top trends shaping the future of the solar energy industry
Want to gain insights into the top 5 solar panel manufacturers from around the world? Read the article below.
About the Client
The client, a leading player in the US energy market, was finding it difficult to analyze competitive developments such as expansions, business agreements, product launches, and acquisitions in the renewable energy space. This prompted them to approach Infiniti Research to leverage its expertise in competitive intelligence to develop a competitor analysis template.
The Business Challenge
The energy industry client wanted to leverage Infiniti’s competitor analysis expertise to tactically profile the key players in the renewable energy industry and analyze their growth strategies using a competitor analysis template.
Like the other US industries, the energy industry has shifted its focus from stability to a fluidity as a countermeasure to cope with the ever-increasing challenges. However, our competitor analysis experts suggest that coping with such challenges and exploiting new market opportunities entails adaptation on all fronts. Other competitor analysis strategies include- paying closer attention to the nature of interconnection agreements and regulatory trends in the energy industry. (more…)
The energy sector around the world is facing unprecedented challenges from rapidly changing market demands. To survive the pressure, they must adapt to technological advances such as intermittent renewable power generation, rooftop solar panels, behind the meter storage, as well as an increase in customer expectations. This new market context is unpredictable, and embracing it requires an overhaul of utilities’ operating and business models. Furthermore, new technologies ranging from smart meters to rooftop solar and energy storage —and the problems they bring— have the potential to disrupt the utilities sector. After remaining relatively unchanged for the last century, the grid is facing a host of new challenges that are evolving the business models in the utilities sector, changing consumer expectations and causing regulatory models to adapt. Here are some key challenges that we feel will impact the energy sector this year:
Government policy and regulation
There is a great deal of uncertainty when it comes to regulations in the energy sector. It is generally difficult at an institutional level to set regulations that provide visibility over several decades. At the same time, the stability and predictability of market regulations over long periods depend in large part on how costs to society are kept in check. If these costs are more efficiently managed, the risk of reversals in public policy increases considerably.
One of the most significant challenges facing the energy sector today is the aging workforce coupled with a decline in available talent. As per estimates, 50% of the workforce in the utilities sector in the US will retire in the next 10 years. Many utilities require additional support to work on new capital projects, and those projects are increasingly complex. This need is particularly acute with engineering and design, where the talent supply is greatly diminished. At the present rate, the gap in finding appropriate replacements is expected to increase in the coming years.
Modernizing grid infrastructure
As far as the utilities sector is concerned, a modernized grid means better security, reduced peak loads, increased integration of renewables, and lower operational costs. The goal is to use technologies, equipment, and controls that communicate and work together to deliver electricity more reliably and efficiently. Consumers will also benefit from the reduction in the frequency and duration of power outages, reduced impact from storms and have service restored more quickly when outages occur. In addition, with easy access to their usage data, consumers can better manage their own energy consumption and costs. Though the ‘smart-meter’ is expected to make it big in the years to the come, companies in the energy sector will face stiff competition from Amazon Alexa, Google and others. This should serve as a wake-up call for utilities to be agile, flexible, and operationally sound.
Digital disruptions are undoubtedly creating new opportunities in the energy sector. However, they also come with their fair share of threats. On one hand, technology is instrumental in realizing intelligent grids and interconnected assets; on the other hand, it introduces new threats such as the possibility of cyber attacks. The developing interconnectivity and proximity of energy systems mean that conflicts can have ripple effects on energy markets and prices. New technologies, such as batteries and grid-embedded generation, are making the cybersecurity of grid systems more vulnerable. With most companies being highly inexperienced in handling large-scale cyber attacks, there are higher chances of future wars and attacks to have a larger cyber component.
To know more about the opportunities and challenges in the utilities sector
With rising global demand, the oil and gas industry faces three major challenges: reduce costs, improve environmental footprint, and optimize the performance of its industrial base assets.
Producing crude oil and refined products at a lower cost to stay competitive in the market is one of the industry’s major challenges. Optimizing production systems and environmental utilities on current operating sites is, therefore, a priority for all the oil and gas industry players. The oil and gas industry is also a major consumer of water and energy resources and is therefore subject to increasingly stringent environmental standards. These constraints are forcing companies to rethink extraction, production, and distribution methods to preserve their license to operate.
In addition, oil and gas industry players will have to invest massive amounts of venture and capital into ever more challenging and expensive production provinces, such as the ultra-deep reservoirs, ultra-deep waters, unconventional resources, and inhospitable environments to continue meeting the world’s demand for oil and gas. However, attracting skilled human resources, both in the technical and managerial areas, becomes crucial for companies operating in this industry.
- The client: An oil and gas industry major
An oil and gas industry major based out of the US approached Infiniti to gain an understanding of the market landscape for oil and gas including current sales trends, key challenges and opportunities, market dynamics, growth drivers, and technological advancements. Additionally, the client was unable to devise an effective growth strategy and take necessary actions to gain a major chunk of the market share as there was no clear visibility of the market size and potential.
How Can Market Intelligence Help Companies in the Oil and Gas Industry?
Market intelligence solutions help companies to develop customer segmentation strategies based on value. It also allows companies to understand precisely how much marketing activity to carry out to which customers and which of their most valuable customers are at a risk of leaving. Market intelligence also helps firms to analyze the unstructured data and identify the crucial pieces of data that are used to retain their customers.
Summary of our market intelligence solution?
To help the client obtain accurate market information, our market intelligence experts carried out an initial hypothesis around the target segments, and the potential respondents were identified through robust secondary research. The market intelligence experts also collated information from external sources including case studies, company publications, journals, news aggregators, and industry forums with the oil and gas industry.
Solution Benefits and the Business Impact
The oil and gas industry client obtained an in-depth understanding of the market potential with the help of Infiniti’s market intelligence solution. The solution also helped the client identify the key competitors, their products, technologies employed, and regulatory timelines. This further helped the client make strategic business decisions.
The digital revolution is here, and for companies in this industry, it could mean the difference between surviving, thriving, or floundering. The proliferation of increasingly affordable digital technologies is expected to unleash innovations across the oil and gas industry, affecting everything from how companies procure goods and services, develop fields, and move product all the way to the HR and back-office services used to back the core businesses.
A must-read case study for strategy specialists and decision makers looking to develop an understanding of the oil and gas industry
LONDON: Infiniti Research, a global market intelligence solutions provider, has announced the completion of their latest market segmentation solution for a renowned energy sector client. The energy sector largely contributes to the economic development of a country. Digitization, strong economic growth, and higher efficiency are some of the key factors expected to drive further growth in the energy sector.
“The growing demand for renewables among the consumers are forcing energy sector companies to meet the demand-supply concerns and simultaneously enhance the supply of the services. Market segmentation will help players to identify different groups of buyers in the market and target specific products and services for each segment, “says an expert at Infiniti Research.
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The solution offered helped the energy sector client to design their advertising and media campaigns to drive sales and improve market attractiveness. The client was also able to seek ways to determine the prominent branding strategies and keep the brand in tune with the customers.
Additional Benefits of The Market Segmentation Solution
- Re-align their offerings based on each customer segment and adequately allocate their marketing resources to meet their target audience’s needs
- Understand the commonalities in opinions and leverage the use of statistical techniques to profile people with similar attitudes.
- To know more, request a free proposal
To know more about how our market segmentation solution helped the energy sector client
In 2013, sustainable energy accounted for almost 22% of the global electricity generation and is expected to witness a 26% increase by 2020.
Due to the world economy’s heavy dependence on fossil fuels during the past decades, the carbon dioxide emissions accompanying economic development have intensified the global greenhouse effect; and global warming, climate change, and ecological destruction have severely threatened human survival. As a result, the issue of sustainable development is growing in importance, and the governments of many countries have made sustainable development one of their administrative focal points.
As the world moves towards a more sustainable energy future, the development of technologies that facilitate this for heating, transport, and power systems is crucial. Sustainable energy is one of the fastest growing and complex sector, as energy is an area of geopolitical concern as well as financial activity. There are many forms of sustainable energy that can be incorporated by countries to stop the use of fossil fuels. Moreover, sustainable energy is replenishable and helps in reducing greenhouse gas emissions without causing any damage to the environment. Sustainable energy sources include solar energy, wind energy, geothermal energy, and biomass energy.
Although the sustainable energy sector seems to have a promising future, there may be certain factors that affect its growth:
- The high capital costs: The most obvious barrier to sustainable energy is the upfront expense of building and installing such power harnessing facilities. Sustainable energy sources are free and require minimum maintenance. A bulk of the expense comes from developing the technology to harness and transmit such energy.
- Siting and transmission: The sustainable energy segment consists of a decentralized model with smaller generating stations spread across a larger area. To adequately take advantage of these resources new transmission infrastructures are needed, and both siting and transmission can be significant barriers for suppliers in this sector.
- Market Entry: New energy providers find it difficult to compete with major market players like coal and gas, and those who have proven themselves with low cost solar and wind technologies.
To overcome the challenges mentioned above, sustainable energy suppliers are increasingly opting for a detailed market intelligence assessment. Leveraging the use of market intelligence solutions help firms operating in the sustainable energy market gain a holistic view of the current market scenario and its key stakeholders. At its core, market intelligence solutions make use of varied information sources that help in creating a broader picture of the company’ existing market, competition, and growth potential for new products and services.
The Business Challenge:
- The client: A sustainable energy supplier
The client, a prominent sustainable energy supplier, wanted to gain detailed insights into the current market scenario to achieve a stronger foothold in the sustainable energy market space. The client also wanted to carry out a thorough analysis to improve their business models and projections. Additionally, the client was looking at utilizing statistical tools and more complex technologies to handle and manipulate the data.
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Infiniti’s team of experts, specializing in market intelligence, carried out extensive interviews and discussions with prominent stakeholders within the sustainable energy market space. This helped them in understanding the current market scenario, the competitors in this market space, and the potential threats. Moreover, our experts were also successful in gathering information from primary sources including industry experts, researchers, consultants, and distributors. They also explored secondary sources like newsletters, business journals, market research data, and industry associations to improve their awareness in the sustainable energy space.
The Solution Benefits and the Business Impact:
The market intelligence solution offered by the experts at Infiniti assisted the client in anticipating their competitor’s plan and helped them identify the gaps in the market. The solution helped the client by offering a 360-degree view of the market, suppliers, opportunities, and also highlighted areas of concerns. The client also gained a competitive advantage as these solutions enabled them to control costs, act faster than the competition, and react more quickly to customers’ needs. Moreover, it also helped them develop strategies to improve their market presence.
Considering today’s market developments, sustainable technologies are cheaper than nuclear and coal and are on par with combined-cycle natural gas. This, along with the lowered costs of digital equipment such as sensors, CPUs, and data storage technologies will help in the growth of the sustainable energy industry.