The CoSMo Company and BearingPoint have joined forces to provide key expertise to European utilities, which are facing increasing demand to transform their capacity to meet the changing environment. Their joint expertise lies in deriving capital expenditure (CAPEX) and operating expense (OPEX) efficiency as well as in modelling risks, as more than €85 billion in investments is required in the next 10 years.
The announced partnership between Lyon-based The CoSMo Company and the European consultancy sees the firms collaborate on research, consulting and delivery offerings. CoSMo, which also has an operation in San Francisco, brings expertise in the optimisation of investment decisions. The firm renders highly complex real world situations into models and simulations, with the outputs used to accurately predict the outcomes of events, enabling utilities to optimise their operations, including capital expenditure (CAPEX) and operating expense (OPEX).
BearingPoint is one of the larger players in the consulting industry, and has a significant track record in the power & utilities industry, operating on the edge of strategy, business and technology, and, since more recently, ventures.
“This partnership enables utilities to face the inevitable wall of investment by keeping OPEX and CAPEX as low as possible while maintaining an acceptable level of risk and quality of service", explains Hugues de Bantel, CEO of The CoSMo Company.
The agreement builds on experience gained in France, where the two firms worked together at a large gas utility supplier. "In the course of this project, it quickly became apparent that CoSMo and BearingPoint were a good fit", says Emmanuel Autier, a Partner at BearingPoint in France. Since the firms have worked on several joint engagements in Germany, the Netherlands, the UK and in the Nordics as well.
With the ramp up to a more formal pan European partnership, the firms expect to better support European utilities deal with the massive asset management challenge they are set to face in the coming decades. Research from UMS Group found that over half of executives in the industry are planning asset replacement programmes, with 40% stating that the impact on budgets is likely to be 40% or higher. According to one estimate, phasing out of legacy assets from the network, to be replaced by not just newer, but also smarter and "greener" solutions, will require investments totalling more than €85 billion in the next 10 years.
The combination of CoSMo’s decision management engine with BearingPoint's business consulting skills and utility expertise will, in the eyes of Autier, enhance the ability to deliver "Strategic Asset Investment Optimisation" services.
The tie-up will further allow utility companies to better model and prepare for investment risks, as well as broader external threats, in what is becoming a more complex operating environment.
Sustainability is another area where the two organisations expect to make a difference. In the face of a rapid need to decarbonise the energy generation network, in line with global and regional agreements, considerable investment will be required in the coming decades to make networks ready for decentralised forms of energy generation and more collaborative cross-country models. Utilities across the continent are already beginning to act to meet growing needs, from the adoption of renewable energy, to building energy exchange platforms and innovation in green energy domains.