To date, there is little in the way of digital support for collaborative ventures in the energy sector – including, in particular, alliances of regional and, as a rule, small power companies. To remedy this problem, the Smart Energy Communities project (SMECS) is investigating innovative forms of cooperation in the energy sector and ways of harnessing current technology trends such as Blockchain, the Internet of Things, smart services, big data analytics and cloud computing. SMECS helps small power companies and cooperatives to establish communities that will be able to deal with the new regulations in the reformed German energy market.
SMECS is based on a platform that links power generators with each other and with consumers, and on an ecosystem with a central coordinator responsible for coordinating and controlling all these activities and stakeholders.
The project partners fulfill different roles. CIS Solutions, the coordinator, is developing the service platform together with CAS Software. Energiearchitektur Chiemgau and Energieforen Leipzig are responsible for the development of management concepts for regional power generators and for increasing the degree of networking. Social CRM Research Center is developing new concepts for customer relationship management and for community management. And Fraunhofer IAO is assisting with the development of solution components on the data and service levels, with the enhancement of forecasts and with overall system development.
SMECS supports small power companies and cooperatives with sales and marketing activities. A central coordinator will optimize all activities of the small power companies and cooperatives. The aim of the project is to tap new sources of revenue for small power companies, strengthen their regional market presence through collaboration and improve the efficiency of their operations. It is seeking to promote cooperation between similar market players in order to increase their size and market visibility.