Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

European market for meter data management to take off: Frost & Sullivan

Iain Morris
August 26, 2014
The market for meter data management (MDM) in Europe is expected to take off in the foreseeable future, according to new research from Frost & Sullivan.

Although the scope for MDM is currently limited in Europe, utilities face a growing need to manage and use the data being generated as a result of smart meter deployments.

Frost & Sullivan reckons MDM is set to become an important investment category for the development of smart meters in the near future.

The company’s research also indicates that despite significant investments in smart meter rollouts, the pace of deployment differs considerably from one country to another.

The majority of European countries are still running pilots but some others are now preparing for mass rollouts.

Demand for MDM solutions is initially expected to come from large distribution system operators with many mid-size companies following suit, according to the research.

“Although many utilities still fail to consider smart metering as a software project, the number of those that demonstrate strong interest in energy loss reduction and asset management is on increase,” said Ewa Tajer, a research analyst with Frost & Sullivan. “Consequently, MDM solutions will evolve into smart grid platforms.”

One concern is that a lack of ICT experience within many utilities could hamper the implementation of additional MDM functionalities, with energy companies largely focusing on the basic functionalities related to data acquisition, meter management and simple consumption information.

Such an approach could prevent many utilities from fully capitalizing on the potential of MDM, cautions Frost & Sullivan.

“Utilities will develop their IT environment step by step, adding new functionalities in the course of time,” said Tajer.

“Therefore, vendors expand their portfolio with analytics hoping for an increase in profits,” added Tajer. “Existing participants are building up their capabilities either by organic growth or acquisitions. New entities are entering the market by expanding their portfolios or trying to tap opportunities by entering into partnerships with MDM providers.”
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