LAVA

Keynote Speaker at BOOST18

LAVA has been invited by Ferranti to act as key note speaker at the Ferranti BOOST18 event. We brought market insights about Pricing & Sourcing in a world of irreversible transition towards green energy.

TOPIC 1: Renewable energy

In the past 15 years, concerns about the environment have arisen that have led, among other things, to the growth of renewable energy generation and the demand for more green, sustainable (or blue) energy. The uncontrollable nature of the renewable output makes it hard to match production to consumption. While some parties search to secure their profitability others search to save on their costs. When considering the decaying availability of budget coming from the authorities, grants can only disappear on the mid-long term while the grid costs are continuously rising. Matching offer and demand on a correct price for both, buyer and seller, is a challenge that could reach a societal level. LAVA has market experience and offers some insights on this topic, considering a few main points of view:

  • Which is the optimal combination of renewable energy sources and storage, taking the consumption into consideration?
  • How can an investor optimize his engagement in renewable production and storage?
  • How can a supplier identify the customers for whom this combination makes sense, and which are these combinations?

TOPIC 2: Energy price

When an offer is made to a (large enough) B2B customer, a lot of attention is paid to the calculation of the energy price, taking into account a lot of parameters derived from the consumption pattern, itself priorly normalized, and risks characterization figures. Generally, once the contract is signed, no actualization is made on the original volumes either for the contract with fixations.

The fluctuating nature of the energy price in combination with the uncertainty about consumed volumes and consumption patterns (mainly the deviation from the offered volume) can quickly reduce the profit margin or result in a loss. Statistical analysis of the contract process & volumes, portfolio structure and product catalog make it possible to define the required frequency for the feedback loop necessary to secure benefits.

LAVA has market knowledge, considering the domain of activity and the acquired expertise of its consultants: in-depth knowledge of contracting, sourcing, allocation processes, data collection and cleaning, and analysis with statistical models.

TOPIC 3: Cloud solutions for Utilities

  • Utility suppliers need IT systems to support their operations. They require systems to treat their customer’s contact info, billing, sourcing, credit collection and financial management, and this often for complex market interactions. There are many similar processes, but each supplier also tries to find its ‘niche’ in the market, its specific offer, whether it is a better price, a given customer segment, a specific product, a contract with better terms, suppliers all have needs for this dedicated ‘tweaking’ of their business offer and processes. Is this specificity compatible with a common cloud solution?
  • LAVA has market experience and offers some insights on this topic, considering a few main points of view:
    • Where do you find your supplier company in the utility market? What’s of importance for decisions on cloud solutions?
    • What is the role of your Cost-to-Serve? Can you lower it using a cloud solution?
    • Does it matter in which utility market you are? Which role does the complexity of your business play?
    • What can you learn from completed cloud implementations?

Check www.lava- consulting.com for more details about our clients and partnerships.

Get inspired by our client cases! From March 14, 2018, every Wednesday in repeat loop after the evening news of 20h00 on Kanaal Z

LAVA on Kanaal Z!

Watch the episodes!

LAVA presents:
Tomorrow’s business challenges of utility companies 
and technical service providers

 

The ecosystem of energy companies and technical service providers experience exciting times:

transition of the energy market, introduction of e-Mobility, smart services, mergers and consolidations.

Only intelligent, agile organisations with a clear vision and strategy succeed in continuously strengthen their market position: because they involve their employees and partners, they align organisation and processes with the strategy, they implement the right applications and go digital.

In Z-Impact, Kanaal Z focusses on these business topics. Management Consultants of LAVA present expert cases together with their clients. They give advice to entrepreneurs and managers on how to strengthen their businesses successfully.

10 Episodes on Z-Impact, from March 14, 2018, every Wednesday in repeat loop after the evening news of 20h00 on Kanaal Z.

Watch the episodes!

Also on www.lava-consulting.be and www.kanaalz.be.

 

CLIENT CASES

 

LAVA, Dulle Grietlaan 17, 9050 Gentbrugge

EANDIS

Transition with big change

The Belgian energy market today is confronted with an ever faster evolution of technology which has an impact on the way the current market functions. In order to develop the value that this technology can bring, we need a flexible federal platform that can support the new market processes, facilitate the exchange of information between the various actors in the market and is able to gradually support new processes in the market. The current implementation of the federal platform enables us to bring the current market processes in line with the new possibilities that smart meters offer us.

Eandis, the largest distribution system operator in Flanders, like all actors in the energy market, needs to make the transition to the federal clearing house and the new market processes. To complete this transition successfully, Eandis counts on the services of LAVA.

The term ‘transition’ is often to be found in the context of a project approach. We talk about Transition when a company changes its way of working structurally. Sounds logical. The change in the way of working in the market must be reflected in the internal processes of Eandis and the implementation of a new ‘Clearing House’ (data exchange platform) has major consequences for the internal IT landscape of the distribution system operator. We can therefore speak about a structural change in the way Eandis is working.

A change like this is being prepared precisely, with a detailed project plan and clear roles and responsibilities for everyone who is closely involved. The project leaders also provide a Transition phase that accurately and meticulously maps out the exact transition. This phase is crucial for the success of the change.

A Transition phase within a project contains three periods:

  • Completing the existing way of working
  • The transition itself
  • Starting up the new way of working.

Each of these three periods has its own complex needs: involvement of the people (internal and external), mapping of the impacted processes, informing suppliers and adjusting their role and responsibility, etc. Each of these needs is then translated per period in an action-oriented approach. This leads gradually to a transition scenario which contains a precise overview of who executes the tasks and when the actions will take place, from minute to minute. The actions are about communication, IT, business tasks, decision moments, etc.

LAVA supports Eandis during this period. Our experience with the execution of complex transitions, our structural approach and our thorough market knowledge of both the current market forces (MIG 4) and the new market forces (MIG6) make us an ideal partner for Eandis. Together with the Eandis teams we are responsible for the smooth running of the transition period. We limit the risks that such a transition entails and ensure broadly supported and pragmatic solutions within Eandis, with minimal impact on the end customer.

Read more about Eandis at www.eandis.be

Read more about how LAVA can support your transition www.lava-consulting.be

E-Mobility gets momentum’

Relive The LAVA Event about E-Mobility

The arrival of multimodal e-mobility is on the fast track and has great impact. On the way we move from A to B, how we bridge distances, the way we live and work, on the automotive industry both from a technical – sales – and maintenance viewpoint, on charging infrastructure, how we want to balance supply and demand of electricity, how we design buildings and cities, on Mobility-As-A-Service (MAAS) and the sharing economy (car-sharing, ride-sharing), the use of self-driving vehicles, the impact on legislation, etc.

It also has an impact on how I, as a customer, can access e-mobility services in an easy and transparent way. Because that’s what it’s all about. How am I being taken care of as an end user? And how do I interact as an individual with service providers?

Our event ‘E-Mobility gets momentum’ allowed experts from different sectors to speak. They shared their thoughts on what is needed to let the new mobility thinking become a success story.

For Luc Lebon of Blue Corner, the roll-out of a dense network of charging infrastructure with subscriptions and extensive service is a necessary and crucial facilitator to encourage the end user to a mind shift.

Philippe Decrock, spokesman for Traxio, launched the idea of ​​Mobility As A Service (MAAS), and the new mobility thinking which builds a bridge between road users and the energy sector.

From this energy sector, Michel Davidts of Eneco brought the vision of the electric car as the missing link in electricity supply.

Finally, Ruben Evens of Tesla, translated Tesla’s vision to guide the world towards sustainable energy. Having your own driving license is old school. Soon we will all step into an electric shared car. Car brands become less relevant. Drive and technology all the more.

The event gave two main take-aways:

  1. A fully integrated service is top priority to unburden the customer and to make multi-modal e-mobility into a success story;
  2. Utility and service companies will have to adapt and integrate processes, systems, data and organization to ensure that multimodal e-mobility becomes a proper alternative.

 

Relive the e-Mobility event. Also on Kanaal Z until Monday, November 20, 8pm.

 

Speak to you soon on our next event.

The LAVA team

 

Schréder

LAVA revises Schréder’s IT Strategy

Schréder is a global prime provider of cost-effective lighting solutions for safe, comfortable and sustainable environments. With its Belgian roots, Schréder is a group of 48 companies worldwide, with over 2,600 people, all passionate about light and innovation. With its expertise in design and development of outdoor lighting solutions, Schréder wants to contribute to the well-being of communities anywhere in the world.

Today, Schréder is taking up the tremendous challenge to shift from a product based company to a solutions partner. Products evolve: Schréder now provides energy efficiency and markets evolve towards smart lighting.

This change in strategic positioning has impact on just any fiber in the company. One of these fibers is IT. IT should even be more aligned with Business, or be part of the Business. The internal application landscape needs to be made future proof. As well as the IT architecture. To name just a few aspects.

In order to design the future global IT strategy to fully support Schréder’s changing business model, Schréder asked LAVA to revise its ICT Strategy.

From the start a team of business and IT senior representatives was set up of for going through an IT strategy review and approval process.

LAVA started off with interviewing C-level management to get a helicopter view of Schréder’s business drivers and future market challenges. LAVA got insights on how Schréder will adapt its business model to face these challenges. This was the basis to draft a new target IT Strategy, aligned with business.

LAVA assessed the capabilities of the current application landscape and IT infrastructure and designed a target landscape and architecture, with the right priorities and associated roadmap for implementation, in agreement with C-level management.

The required IT governance and Business/IT organizational interaction has been worked out.

The team got approval from the Board to implement the target IT strategy.

Carine Couls – Chief Transformation Officer at Schréder commented “It was a real pleasure working with the team of LAVA. The LAVA team was really interested in our company, our sector, our challenges and our opportunities. In a very short timeframe they were able to understand our business drivers. This ability especially together with their strong expertise has led to a good IT strategic plan. Very professional!”

Working jointly with Schréder has been very enriching and rewarding for LAVA. The project was challenging, with a global scope and impact, and right in the context of smart lighting and energy. A crossroads where we like to be challenged.

Read more about Schréder’s business on http://www.schreder.com.

Meet LAVA on www.lava-consulting.be.

LAVA Consulting
ENGIE

ENGIE adapts its Settlement & DAM environment to the MIG6 protocol with the help of LAVA

Within the Settlement & DAM department, which deals with the processing of allocation, reconciliation, grid processing and reporting, the change to MIG6 (*) requires major changes. Their implementation involves a series of steps: the establishment of blueprints, the definition of tests, validation of developments. All this in several phases and iterations.

 

The complexity of the field requires active and in-depth knowledge as well as operational experience of current market processes complemented by an understanding of the influence of MIG6 on these processes. At LAVA we have found the right support.

 

LAVA contributed to the achievement of our objectives by respecting the tense schedule that the project schedule imposed on us. Thanks to the fast integration of LAVA into our teams of specialists, we were able to write our blueprints without a hitch. Support during development and validation tests enabled the team to work agilely on short cycles, integrated into a global schedule.

 

In the margins, with the help of LAVA, we were able to identify certain elements of the value chain that will require specific attention for the transition to MIG6 and thus prepare the necessary actions for their evolution.

 

Olivier Langaskens Metering, Settlement & Reporting Manager at ELECTRABEL ENGIE GROUP

(*) Note by LAVA: Protocol of exchange between the various actors in the electricity and gas world in Belgium (suppliers, managers of distribution networks, transmission system operators). In this way, a central register of access points is kept up to date, and the parties concerned receive the necessary information (such as counting data).

VEB

Vlaams EnergieBedrijf migrates its customer management system with help of LAVA

Vlaams EnergieBedrijf (VEB) organizes the purchase of gas and electricity for a variety of public services. In recent years, VEB has been successful in reducing the energy costs of many government bodies. Moreover, it was no longer mandatory for these governmental bodies to organize a tender for the purchase of energy and VEB also gave them budget advice. Due to the growth in recent years the original customer management system was reaching its limits. With the help of LAVA a new, stronger application was implemented.

LAVA took the role of Project Manager for Vlaams EnergieBedrijf during this crucial phase. LAVA together with Vlaams EnergieBedrijf and its external suppliers, drafted the migration plan and took over the coordination of the implementation. LAVA also developed the quality plan and coordinated the testing phase. Thanks to the constructive cooperation of all parties involved the migration of the data was successfully executed and the timings were respected. Right in the middle of the migration process we also implemented a large new customer. End of January 2017 the first invoices were created by Haugazel, the new application. Vlaams EnergieBedrijf is ready for the future, ready to unburden more government agencies in their purchase of energy.

On April 27th LAVA organized an inspiring event on drones and smart glasses

Relive the LAVA event about drones and smart glasses

Belgium is ready for innovative applications such as drones and smart glasses aimed at increasing process quality and process simplification. This proved again from the testimonies and keynotes at the LAVA event on drones and smart glasses. More than 40 participants from utility companies, field engineering, logistics and production companies attended the session in the Communication Loft in Ghent. They were welcomed by Luc De Keyser, Managing Partner at LAVA.

Lieve Van Gijsel of Aetos Drones gave an inspiring explanation of the possibilities of drones in the context of increasing the quality of business processes in a wide range of sectors. Drones form an extra pair of eyes in the sky, but also inside buildings, pipes and even pipelines. They optimize technical inspections and facilitate technical maintenance. Thanks to specialized software, drones themselves are even able to make an initial interpretation of images. The session ended with a live demonstration of different types of drones. The participants could see in real time how drones took aerial photographs and videos of the surroundings.

Next, Peter Verstraeten of Proceedix gave an interesting reading about the possibilities of deploying smart eyewear in production and supply chain environments. The focus was on digitizing work instructions and technical inspections. Different types of smart eyewear were demonstrated. Finally, the attendees could listen to the testimony of Guy Slagmulder, CEO of Ardovlam, who explained a specific application of smart glasses for the installation of fire detection systems in his company.

LAVA can look back on a more than successful edition.

 

Download presentation Lieve Van Gijsel

Download presentation Peter Verstraeten

 

LAVA & VMA

VMA strengthens its strategic market position

LAVA helps VMA clustering its four electro technical service providers to empower its market position

Technology is evolving quickly, impacting many businesses and markets around the world. Companies that fail to adapt are ultimately squeezed out of the market either by a slow death or a takeover. In recent years this evolution encouraged many large electro technical service providers to change strategy and evolve into total solution providers.

CFE, one of Belgian’s largest industrial groups, with multiple technical service providers) understood this game like no other.

Incited by VMA, CFE decided to empower its market position in electro technical services by clustering the four legal entities Nizet, Vanderhoydoncks, VMA and VMA West. The goal is to create one strong electro technical total solution provider with a structure well suited for future regional and international growth and capable of securing a top market position.

For this cluster to become a success, one team needed to be built, with a shared strategy, a clear execution plan and a solid base of support. Often one or more of these components are forgotten or neglected leading to below expectation performance and results. Guy Wynendaele, managing director of VMA, and CFE (the holding company behind VMA) were well aware that a strategy is only as successful as its execution and called upon LAVA to help avoid this pitfall.

Once the goal was translated into a clear strategic objective, ten intense weeks followed to build “the VMA Cluster”, a joint effort of the four entities and LAVA.

LAVA interviewed key employees, performed organization scans and facilitated multiple workshops with a selection of people of each company to define the VMA Cluster. Together we defined one common strategy, organization structure, mission, culture, and plan of execution supported by senior management to attain the set goal.

Everyone was challenged to reach out to share ideas, hopes and fears. Through intense collaboration and several team building exercises one fully aligned, integrated management team was built based on mutual trust and openness, ready and energized to execute their strategy.

In the coming year, LAVA continues to support the VMA Cluster to assure the operational plan is well executed and the set objectives are achieved in a timely and durable manner, keeping track of progress and making necessary adjustments along the way.

Exciting times ahead.

Get inspired about LAVA on www.lava-consulting.be.

Follow the VMA Cluster on www.vma.be.

LAVA

LAVA’s February’s off-site – 2017

This month’s off-site took place in Antwerp. The Locker Room (www.lockerroom.be) is an inspiring hide-away close to the Schelde Docks. It’s a trendy loft, decorated and furnished like a meeting room, one you would like to have at home, with lounge chairs, bookshelves with interesting literature and a great Brainstorm Wall.

I arrive first, by far. Something that can be considered as unprecedented. Bit by bit, my colleagues drop in and the walking diner starts, delicious, homemade vegetarian finger food.

Luc De Keyser, LAVA’s Managing Partner, walks us through LAVA’s year-to-date financials, project updates and sales opportunities. Every team gives a status update on LAVA’s Shared Objectives (Shared Objectives do motivate LAVA people much more than individual goals, read our December2016 off-site article for more details). Then, it’s Jorn’s turn. He gives us a heads up about Operational Excellence. As a (recently awarded) Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, and LAVA’s Service Champion for Operational Excellence, Jorn takes the lead for this service offering and represents the rich experience LAVA has to offer in this domain, in a service context as well as production environment, for large and small companies. Measuring is the fil rouge in operational excellence. Measuring of quality and time, to make sure changes in processes, roles and responsibilities are done for the better. A very inspiring topic. Follow our social media to stay up to date.

Last on the agenda is ‘Discover your colors’. It’s a methodology that, based on four colors (green, yellow, red and blue) gives insights in your beliefs and perception, why you see things the way you do. It helps to understand why others see the same things differently. It teaches you what your energy drivers and drainers are. The most interesting aspect is the insight of how you can improve the quality of your collaboration and communication, how you can have more impact on colleagues, clients, anyone, just by adapting your approach to their colors. For the sake of silo thinking and for fun we split the group according to the four primary colors. This shows that LAVA is predominantly blue and red, a lot of structured, super organized people and a lot of leaders, driven by action. Luckily everyone is a blend of colors. Green and yellow are less present in numbers within LAVA, but they don’t go unnoticed!

In between sessions, Edwin, utilities expert and talented photographer takes pictures for updates on LAVA’s social media.

We finish the evening with a drink at the bar and go home inspired.

If you need help to optimize your company’s performance, contact us at info@lava-consulting.be.

Get inspired on www.lava-consulting.be.