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Promoting the development of an energy efficiency service (EES) market - Good practice examples of changes in energy service business, strategies, and supportive policies and measures in the course of (CHANGEBEST)

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The ChangeBest project aimed at assisting energy companies and other market actors in entering or enlarging the B2B and B2C markets for energy efficiency services (EES) by supplying methodologies, strategies and advice for developing promising business cases of new Energy Efficiency Services. The project was also intended to contribute to stimulate discussion regarding the barriers and facilitating policies and measures influencing EES market development. Besides an outstanding market analysis and key guidelines for new ESCOs, the project succeeded to introduce in the market 35 new services. This was done through the launch of 48 pilot projects operated by 38 partners from practice from 16 different EU Member States. Their activities were successfully supported by 19 national partners of the ChangeBest project team. This development led to 480 contracts sold excluding the mass markets services, which in turn resulted in more than 166GWh of energy savings per year. Market actors were also highly involved throughout Europe, as shown by the high number of stakeholders (over 1.500) that attended the organised workshops in each of the participating country.


  • 48 promising energy efficiency service business cases and strategies have been implemented by 38 partners from practice and most of these new EES are expected to be continuously sold after the end of the project.
  • Dissemination of interesting good practices of energy efficiency services as well as a very interesting strategic product development guide which should further help new and existing EES providers to enter or expand their EES business in the future.
  • The project has shown that market facilitation policies and measures could be helpful to increase trust and to further expand the EES market.
  • Dissemination of sound policy recommendations on how to support the development of the EES market and development of a concept for increased EES networking at the European level.

Lessons learned

  • In Europe there is a large potential for profitable EES, even in EES markets at initial or not well developed stage. Despite the market heterogeneity and the substantially differing policy environments in the EU Member States, there are many possibilities for market actors (ESCOs, building technology providers, energy companies, other companies) to offer EES or partial services related to EES, generating profit from saving energy at the customer’s site.
  • Strategic product development of new EES should start from the identification of possible EES ideas that provide economic, energy-efficient solutions to the customers and lead to the development of professional business cases. In general, moderate profitability can be expected if the EES are well-designed and important success factors are respected. Even small EES or EES by companies not yet well-experienced in this market and EES in less developed markets can be profitable.
  • The empirical analysis has shown that success in developing profitable EES business cases also depends on the maturity of the market in the respective country and market segment, and on the policies and measures hindering or fostering success of EES providers. Political decision-makers on EU and national level have large responsibility in providing supporting framework conditions for EES market development and a level playing field that gives equal chances to all market actors.

Partners and coordinator

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Wuppertal Institut für Klima, Umwelt und Energie GmbH
Contact point: 
Claus Barthel
Felix Suerkemper
+49 (0)202 2492-269
Stefan Thomas
Oliver Lah
+49 30288745816


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In brief

01/07/2009 to 30/06/2012
Contract number: 

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