The Industry Is in the Midst of an “Energy Storage Decade”

Expert Interview – April 25, 2024

Florian Mayr, Partner at Apricum

In this interview, Florian Mayr, Committee Chairman of the ees Europe Conference, talks about the highlights and key topics at this year’s ees Europe Conference. The industry expert is involved in planning the conference program.

He is a partner at Apricum, a consultancy, where he is responsible for the fields of energy storage and green hydrogen.

Interview with Florian Mayr

The ees Europe Conference approaching is fast. What can attendees expect this year? Which topics will be in focus in 2024?

Of course, this is a very special year for ees Europe, as it is our tenth anniversary! Looking back on the last ten years, it is quite impressive to see how dynamically the storage industry has developed and how much it has grown.

Every year, ees Europe focuses on different challenges and opportunities that the industry needs to proactively address. We always want to cover the hottest and most interesting topics for the industry in ees Europe’s program – this year, with nine instead of six sessions dedicated to energy storage.

For example, there is a lot going on in the regulatory area, for example the implementation of the EU’s electricity market reform and the resulting potential for energy storage. Another important topic in this context is the EU Battery Regulation with its focus on the sustainability of energy storage. We have put together top-notch panels for both topics.

The era of long-term storage is once again being heralded by many experts. But is it really happening this time? What would it require? I’m sure there will be a sober and probably somewhat controversial discussion about this. Another hot topic will be supply chain security and the right strategies for securing supply. And of course, we also want to talk about sales.

How can the use of energy storage be optimized to maximize ROI? We will also discuss the latest developments in technologies, use cases and markets, as well as the most exciting projects from the past year.

What benefits do the conferences of The smarter E Europe offer attendees? Why should they participate?

The energy world and adjacent sectors are becoming increasingly intertwined. So it doesn’t make sense to deal with them separately. Here are some examples: The expansion of solar energy requires grid flexibility, which can be provided by energy storage and/or smart grid applications. Electric cars are only clean if they are charged with renewable energy.

At the same time, EV owners typically like having large PV rooftop systems and residential storage systems because they can use more of the self-generated solar energy themselves. V2X solutions turn electric cars into flexibility options that can ease the burden on the power grid, allowing more solar energy to be connected.

The smarter E Europe covers the convergence of these four sectors – solar, storage, EVs and power grids. Visitors can switch between these individual areas to expand their options by picking and choosing whatever interest them. Numerous joint sessions will provide more details on the intersections and connections between the conference strands.

Where is the energy storage industry headed? Which markets are currently showing the most potential and how is this reflected in the conference program?

The industry is the midst of an “energy storage decade”: Just as ees has evolved from an “appendage” of Intersolar to a strong independent exhibition and conference, the energy storage segment has grown from a niche market to a key enabler of the energy transition.

In more and more countries and markets, the storage market is becoming more attractive – essentially because of three drivers: First, as fossil-based energy production is being phased out and renewables are being deployed, the demand for flexibility in the power grid is skyrocketing. Second, energy storage is becoming an increasingly competitive option for boosting flexibility. This is thanks to the decreasing cost of batteries and technological developments of hardware and software, and thanks to the increasing volatility of electricity prices and thus the price of flexibility.

And finally third, and perhaps most importantly: More and more regulators and policy makers seem to have recognized the important role of energy storage and are now removing barriers and creating possibilities for monetization.

We will have a dedicated session for the markets. As a nod to the European Football Championship taking place at the same time as ees Europe, we will be pitting some of the most exciting markets against each other to determine the European Energy Storage Champion – all visitors of The smarter E Europe are welcome to cheer for their team!

Which sessions would you strongly recommend, especially with regard to the different stakeholder groups?

I think all sessions are extremely exciting, so I don’t want to pick one or give any recommendations. My advice for visitors: Just try and make the most of it!

You are using an outdated browser

The website cannot be viewed in this browser. Please open the website in an up-to-date browser such as Edge, Chrome, Firefox, or Safari.