What is the Swiss challenge
Electricity and supply: today's challenges
Low wholesale prices
The low wholesale prices often remain below the production costs of many Swiss power plants. The decreasing equity leads to continued pressure for cost optimization, especially refinancing and the sale of non-core business areas. Some energy supply companies are already relying on a division of the business areas into two companies in order to position the business areas that are attractive for new investors independently in the market.
In order to be able to compensate for the large losses or losses caused by the sale of energy from traditional power plants on the wholesale market or with large customers, energy supply companies are increasingly looking for investment opportunities in energy services and in regulated electricity generation, where in certain European countries there are still subsidies for investments in new ones renewable power generation systems such as wind and solar systems exist.
Changing regulatory requirements - liberalization and the digital energy supply company
Based on the current statements of the Federal Office of Energy (SFOE), the electricity market will not be fully opened before 2020 - in the longer term, however, this may also be implemented in Switzerland. Experience in the European countries shows that the complete opening of the electricity market should lead to a reduction in end customer prices. The currently decreasing margins in today's partially open end customer market (customers with an annual consumption of at least 100 MWh can enter the free market) are a foretaste of a possible second full stage of the electricity market opening. The emerging competition for customers will also develop in Switzerland, and energy supply companies that fail to win new customers will experience customer erosion. A clear strategy and market position are required to counteract this erosion - and preparations for this should start today.
New regulatory requirements - financial market and taxes
Business on the wholesale markets is increasingly becoming the focus of financial regulations (e.g. MIFID II, FMIA, etc.) and are confronted with new requirements in tax law (e.g. BEPS).
The arrival of decentralized generation and storage, combined with the possibilities of the “Internet of Things”, create a revolutionary atmosphere in the energy sector.
Energy supply companies and network operators are required to adapt to the new circumstances and, in particular, to evaluate or offer new business models in connection with decentralized generation, prosumer services and home automation. The shift in electricity generation to the distribution network and the additional storage options are leading to new requirements in network management (smart grid) and, due to the advent of IT technology, also to greater vulnerability to cyber attacks.
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