Energy consumers are craving for transparency, comfort, eco-responsibility and, cheaper energy bills. At IO. Energy, we tackle these consumer desires from 4 angles: unlock E-mobility, empower energy communities, leverage flexible assets & benefit from smart building set-ups.
IO.Energy is 60+ energy market parties, research institutes, startups, and technology corporations with exciting ideas which could provide the consumers with the changes they need.
Great start! Nonetheless, an idea is worth nothing without an outstanding execution. By outstanding execution, I do not mean planning, I mean doing.
How? Stop working on a business plan. Start searching for a business model!
14 working groups are searching for their business model as we speak. To reach that goal, each group has filled the 8 building blocks of the business model canvas:
- Customers: Who are the energy consumers to whom they address their solutions? Do they have other kinds of customers then energy consumers?
- The value proposition: What are their offering to the energy consumers to relieve their pain and generate new gains?
- Resources: What is needed (materials, talents, data access, etc.) to make their business model viable?
- Partnerships: Which capabilities are needed from outside? Which kind of partners does each working group need to build and run its solution?
- Distribution: How do they bring their offering to their consumers?
- Customer care: How do they delight consumers with new energy services? How do they make sure that they are and feel listened to?
- Costs: What will be the main operational costs to take into account to bootstrap and run their solution?
- Revenue streams: Who will pay and how much are they ready to pay?
Diverse consumer-centric BMC were drafted for value-adding solutions such as a rewarding system encouraging electric cars owners to recharge their batteries at times and locations which are optimal for the grid stability or a flexible assets management tool empowering green energy communities to leverage their co-own solar panels, heat pumps and so ends.
Finding your business model is a tough exercise. Although each IO. Energy working group was able to fill the 8 building blocks after 3 intense days of customers discovery, their answers are not carved in stone. On the contrary, it is the intrapreneur job to test every assumption used to fill the business model canvas and iterate.
Successful intrapreneurs fight against the natural bias which pushes us to look for a confirmation of what we have in mind. They rather challenge their own beliefs by talking and testing their consumers in order to adapt each building blocks of the business model canvas to the market reality.
If you find yourself spending 4 hours thinking about the architecture of your solution while you do not have any evidence that consumers perceive a benefit in your value proposition, you felt in the budding intrapreneurs trap.
How can you avoid that trap?
Test your value proposition on real consumers, not your family and friends. Do not stop once you get 3 people interested. Test your assumptions on a representative panel of consumers. At IO. E, we test our value propositions on diverse consumers personas such as consumers motivated to decrease their energy bills and those interested in decreasing their carbon footprint.
Most of all, make sure that someone is willing to pay for your services. What if consumers are interested in your solution but not at the proposed price? Does it validate your business model?
Not yet! Sure, you have a value proposition worth celebrating but not too long! We urge you to get back to work and find out how much your customer is willing to pay and if it covers your estimated cost. If not, are they any other revenue stream/other customers willing to pay? If not consumers directly, would other customers benefiting from your solution be willing to pay?
If no one is ready to pay for your solution, it is not worth developing it. It’s time for a pivot.
IO. Energy Ecosystem fosters entrepreneurial solutions development with energy data access, cross-sector partners and innovation best practices.