geo case study published discussing data monetisation

Data Monetisation

We are pleased to announce that a case study on geo discussing data monetisation, has been included in the latest study by everis’ on data sharing between companies in Europe. The study published by the EU Publications Office is available for download online, but we have highlighted key areas of interest.

Building on its experience as a developer of energy monitoring devices, geo expanded its activities into providing B2B data services – offering the data collected by its devices and systems to other companies, with consumers being the end-users of these data. In the beginning, the energy monitoring devices were pre-smart and comparatively basic in terms of sophistication, but over the years they have been significantly improved, resulting in the collection of greater data volumes and more types of data. In the late 2000s, geo realised that the growing amounts of data its devices generated could be useful to other companies, the company therefore decided to strategically re-invest existing revenues into developing a secondary business activity.

B2B data sharing

Data is mainly licensed to the energy and utility sector, including grid operators, meter providers and energy installers. These are usually large companies that are interested in these data to better understand their consumers’ needs and optimally match energy supply and demand. Because geo’s devices are collecting data on a real-time basis, utilities and grid operators do not have to rely on historical data anymore. Instead, they can manage energy flows as they occur, resulting in efficiency gains. Moreover, geo’s clients include insurance companies who use data collected by geo’s devices to assess liability claims of their consumers (e.g. whether a water leak may have been caused by a failure to maintain a certain temperature in a household).

Technical mechanisms

Broadly speaking, geo uses different technical mechanisms according to the needs of the companies re-using their data. Currently, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) appear to be very important because they ease data exchange with other companies. On the other hand, for bulk data geo tends to use FTP technologies or online data repositories. Moreover, the company is considering to engage more often with industrial data platforms as they may become increasingly useful when it comes to providing real-time household consumption data to large operators and utilities, enabling them to combine data from different companies to better manage electricity supply and demand levels.

Conditions for sharing data

First and foremost, data sharing requires the appropriate understanding and informed consent from consumers contributing the data through their use of geo’s in-home devices. This has always been a requirement, but new regulations such as GDPR are formalising, tightening and standardising these requirements across Europe. Obtaining this permission is paramount and is where the consumer energy services geo provides comes in: providing the user with value is a pre-requisite to obtaining their permission to share their data to generate higher value services. Licensing agreements are a central ingredient of geo’s business model for sharing data with other companies. These contracts are legally binding and are used to grant access to data to third parties, specifying in detail the type and volume of data concerned. In exchange, companies must respect certain usage conditions, including some form of remuneration and restrictions of data use to a specific purpose.

To download a copy of the full report or if you are interested in reading the full case study published on geo please use the links below: