Session 8: From Asset Ownership to the Shared Economy

May 8th, 2018

According to market researchers, by 2025 the majority of energy companies in the world will not own ANY infrastructure and/or generation assets. We are moving away from the era where large (traditional) corporate and/or government balance sheets are required to fund cross-industry innovation. The new energy value chain will be “transaction centric” enabled by multi-sided markets (peer- to-peer, localized, and on-demand transactions). The competitive technology landscape is no longer about traditional technology competition but rather about non-energy stakeholders entering the market with innovative new service-based solutions. In this session, speakers will focus on how to demonstrate shared-economy solutions inside and outside the energy sector, will describe how this shift is already happening and how it can support an accelerated clean energy transition.


Session Chair: Charles Navarro, Clean Energy Investment Specialist (Consultant), Energy for All Initiative, Asian Development Bank


Sebastian Groh, Managing Director, SOLshare

Solar Peer-to-Peer Grids: From an Energy Access Model to the Future for Utilities Globally

Leveraging a base of over 4.5 million solar home systems in Bangladesh, SOLshare, acting as the Airbnb of the off-grid world, has been developing the principle of how energy can be traded with the help of IoT devices. Rural villagers are turned into prosumers sharing their excess power. This modular infrastructure approach allows grids to grow dynamically while the ownership and assets are distributed. This presentation will explain the intricacies of energy sharing in bottom up grids, and describe what can be learned from it on a broader scale addressing fellow practitioners, policy makers and investors alike. This presentation will illustrate our beliefe that smart, peer-to- peer grids can be the future for utilities globally.

Manuel Cocco, Cofounder and COO, Vireo

Vireo, the Digital Green Revolution

Vireo has created a fintech solution to connect local green projects with global impact investors through the blockchain. This presentation will describe the creation of a shared-economy solution that can support the required accelerated clean energy transition via the realization of promising green projects. Vireo provides investment opportunities in duly vetted green assets that generate returns while supporting the real economy. Vireo is the first company offering digital assets directly linked to and based on green commodity production, accessible to both traditional and digital investors on a global scale. Vireo products will be accessible to both traditional and digital investors, and will make it possible to adjust the risk/return profile of green investments in emerging countries.

BenJeMar-Hope Flores, Researcher, Power Systems Analysis and Control Laboratory - Seoul National University of Science and Technology

Smart Contracts for Smart Grid: Harnessing the Potential of Blockchain Technology for Future Energy Systems

This presentation will discuss how blockchain based smart contracts could enable auditable exchanges between distributed energy resources without intermediaries to broker the transactions. Reduced transaction costs in energy sales can encourage more investments for renewable power. Recent implementations done by start-ups such as Power Ledger and LO3 Energy involve developing a systemthat allowed peer-to-peer energy trading among neighbors forming a micro grid based on a shared system of solar panels and storage systems. Another application is incentivizing sustainable behavior such as generating solar energy in a form of a cryptocurrency such us the SolarCoin, which is 50 times more efficient than generating BitCoin. This paradigm can transform the very architecture of our future resilient grids.

Kazuo Matsushita, Professor Emeritus, Kyoto University

New Financing Sources for Small Green Power Projects

While large energy projects have access to standard financing, many smaller projects lack access. Banks are reluctant to lend or on-lend at high interest rates. Instead, an innovative form of financing can be used—hometown investment trust funds (HITs). HITs were created in Japan as a new source of financing for solar and wind power. The objective is to connect investors with local projects in which they have personal knowledge and interest. Investors can choose their projects and invest through the internet. Using HITs, many Japanese investors have invested small amounts in local wind and solar projects. In response, local banks have started to invest. HIT funds have since spread to Cambodia, Viet Nam, Peru, and Mongolia, and are attracting attention from Thailand and Malaysia. The presentation will explain HIT funds and provide an example of HIT financing for renewable energy in Japan. (Note: this topic will be explored further in an ACEF Deep Dive Workshop on Friday, 8 June.).