4 Reasons to Invest in an Energy Asset Management Platform for Your EaaS Company

By Uplight Staff Writer on

Commercial & industrial (C&I) site operators face major energy management challenges today. Fleet electrification pushes demand beyond what local utilities can supply. Increasing production collides with rising energy costs. Grid outages put refrigerated goods at risk. And always-on data requirements make resiliency a must-have. The threats are real, but Energy-as-a-Service (EaaS) providers have stepped up to provide solutions.

From solar panels to batteries, smart cold storage systems to EV charging stations, and a wide range of assets in between, EaaS providers are managing an increasingly diverse mix of distributed energy resources (DERs) for their C&I clients. Larger portfolios of assets create more complexity, but also new opportunities to strategically deploy DERs to help clients achieve their resiliency, cost savings, and ESG goals.

Sophisticated hardware needs equally sophisticated software to manage and optimize asset performance in real time. An energy asset management platform provides scalable tools that EaaS providers need to manage site-level asset portfolios to maximize savings, aggregate flexibility within and across sites, and optimize energy asset dispatch to the larger grid across multiple value streams.

Here are four reasons EaaS providers should add an energy asset management platform to their tech stack this year.

1. Safeguard Energy Resiliency

Power outages aren’t just disruptive—for C&I customers, they can lead to significant financial losses from damaged inventory and delayed production. As more extreme weather events and variable energy sources have entered the picture over the past decade, so have related power reliability issues. It’s no surprise that resiliency is a top priority for C&I organizations investing in microgrids and other energy services.

With an energy asset management platform, EaaS providers can monitor customer site loads and asset telemetry in real time. When a utility power outage happens, they can immediately deploy onsite energy resources such as solar PV, microturbines, and batteries to ensure critical systems stay running until the grid is back online.

While resiliency is a top priority, outages don’t happen every day. EaaS providers can continue to drive value for C&I customers even when power’s flowing from the grid—and energy asset management software helps unlock these growing value streams.

2. Reduce Customer Energy Costs

As electrification takes off across sectors, peak demand is skyrocketing. To shift load and incentivize energy reduction, utilities are responding with time-of-use (ToU) tariffs that increase costs during periods of peak demand. For C&I customers, these tariffs can substantially increase energy bills across sites—which is bad news for operating budgets.

An energy asset management platform empowers EaaS providers to reduce clients’ peak demand through proactive flexibility management—such as using stored energy in a battery to power high-load systems during ToU tariff windows, or waiting to charge EV fleets until late at night when utility rates are lower. This technology also supports flexible aggregation and market participation through a virtual power plant (VPP) arrangement to further offset energy costs. By strategically deploying flexibility and managing demand, EaaS providers can consistently reduce energy costs for their customers, providing a competitive advantage as grid market structures continue to evolve.

3. Assist Customers in Achieving Sustainability Goals Through Energy Measurement and Management

While reducing energy consumption during ToU tariff windows has a clear cost advantage, it also aligns with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Generally, periods of high demand in the evening hours are when the carbon intensity of grid operations is the highest due to the operation of polluting and expansive fossil fuel peaking plants. With the Security and Exchange Commission’s recent climate disclosure rules, C&I customers need an energy asset management platform to manage energy consumption and reporting.

To illustrate the potential impact, let’s say an EaaS provider operates multiple C&I sites that generate clean electricity from solar PV panels, which is stored throughout the day in onsite batteries. During the early evening ToU tariff window, the EaaS provider uses the available flexibility services from these batteries, reaping the financial benefits of tariff optimization while also offsetting the use of more carbon intensive sources of grid power. This strategic dispatch unlocks additional value for EaaS providers and their clients, and supports the goals of managing and reporting on scope I, II, and III emission goals.

4. Optimize Asset Performance Across Value Streams and Customer Sites

A final reason to invest in an energy asset management platform is the complexity of optimizing asset dispatch across different value streams from multiple customer sites. The more levers EaaS providers can pull to manage energy costs, the more challenging it becomes to balance onsite energy needs and real-time energy market monetization opportunities.

A simple use case could entail a customer site with a single onsite battery that stores energy from an onsite biogas facility paired with a rooftop solar PV system. The client’s service-level agreement (SLA) requires at least 15% of the battery’s capacity to remain unused as a fallback if a power outage happens. Leading up to the ToU tariff window, the EaaS provider must decide how to dispatch the battery’s available flexibility. It could employ a demand response approach and use the battery to reduce the amount of power the client uses from the grid, or it could sell flexibility into the market to capitalize on ToU tariff rates. With an intelligent energy asset management platform, the EaaS provider can review its client’s asset telemetry, onsite generation needs, and current market prices to choose the dispatch option that delivers the most value at any given time.

Scaling Customer Impact with Flexible Energy Asset Management

The benefits of an energy asset management platform are clear for both EaaS providers and their C&I clients. With a powerful set of asset monitoring, dispatch, and optimization tools, EaaS providers can safeguard site-level resiliency, reduce energy bills, and advance ESG goals. With the right platform and technology partner, EaaS providers can build a solid foundation for long-term success that can scale to support new clients, asset types, and ever-changing market regulations.

Energy Asset Management

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