When the Thüga Group embarked on a major project to provide a new billing platform for the German energy industry, they chose to go with a collaboration of consulting and technology partners including Accenture, powercloud, BTC and Klafka & Hinz. This collaboration provided the basis for the successful delivery of Thüga’s TAP energy billing platform. With around 15.5 million metering points, TAP is considered one of the largest IT projects in the market. The platform is positioned to set a new standard for the energy sector with a total of 38 municipal and energy utilities choosing to use TAP. The solution offers customers competitive services at economical prices based on a pay-per-use model.
Just like powercloud, the TAP system is a modular software-as-a-service platform built on a cloud architecture and sets new standards in terms of technology. This means users will be able to select the elements they need from the modular system. And the potential is not limited to Thüga’s TAP solution, as powercloud sees a major opportunity to replicate the functionality to similar platforms in the United States and other European countries.
In a recent interview with ZfK, a German magazine for communal business, Managing Directors of powercloud, Marco Beicht and Zoran Petrovic, explain the collaboration and the various roles provided by the individual service providers:
Zoran, Managing Director & CGO at powercloud:
Through this collaboration, we will successfully deliver a flexible, open platform, designed for the future, and built by a team of talented partners. This collaboration was a natural fit with the philosophy behind the powercloud platform – broad openness. This makes it very easy, for example, to integrate a wide range of software solutions from other companies into our ecosystem. Everything is oriented towards cooperative ideas such as these. That is what sets us apart from other suppliers and is ultimately what also convinced Thüga. Our motto is, “Always move away from the monolithic solutions of the past towards a flexible platform of the future.” This allows everyone to play to their strengths.
Marco, Founder and CEO at powercloud:
As general contractor, Accenture provides overall management and is the central point of contact for the individual projects and migration tasks. Experts from Accenture will establish the new TAP platform based on powercloud and set it up. We will concentrate on what we do best, developing the powercloud platform, not only for the market role of supplier, but also for the network operator. Of course, we will also be on hand to assist with onboarding and support for subsequent operations.
As the local partner for system integration & support, BTC strengthens the team with its expertise in energy industry processes. The company commands wide-ranging technological know-how and has years of experience in supporting German utilities. Klafka & Hinz supplies regulated EDM processes for energy/gas to facilitate sales, network operation, meter reading management and time series management. All processes will be seamlessly integrated into the platform.
powercloud acts as the core system for the platform and handles financial processes for all market roles in the energy sector, including invoicing, receiving payments, managing payment reminders, and contract management. All regulatory processes such as market communication, consumption point management and network utilization management are also performed on the powercloud platform. We always ensure that all the regulatory demands on market communication are adhered to.
We ultimately manage all master data and are responsible for all financial processes. Everything is aggregated for the general ledger. And the solution is available for all market roles – supplier, metering station operator and network operator – and for both B2C and B2B clients for energy, gas, water, and heating/cooling. This means powercloud is predominantly responsible for the back-office and mid-office areas. However, Accenture adds a standardized digital layer to our solution, including its own interface for first-level service processes.
The decision concerning TAP is an important milestone in the history of our company. It brings us one giant step closer to our goal of operating a centralized, highly efficient cloud solution for the energy industry. Incidentally, it is also possible to gauge the significance of this milestone by the market reactions – we have been congratulated by over 100 energy utilities, as well as numerous partners and software manufacturers.
We have come a long way, a journey which started back with our collaboration on the cross-association initiative, “IT platform of the future”. We are delighted that this project has given rise to TAP, and we have now secured the contract for the new solution – a sensational result.
powercloud will act as the energy industry engine room for all utilities, regardless of size. We see this as a challenge that is never complete. Quite the opposite, we want to always continue improving. An example of this will include the use of artificial intelligence in the powercloud platform. We promise that all TAP stakeholders as well as other customers will benefit from this and further innovations and will be perfectly equipped for whatever future challenges evolve.
At this point, it is important to reiterate that TAP already encompasses 38 utilities of all different sizes. It was not easy to group all their requirements under one solution. At the same time, this provides a great opportunity for the stakeholders with synergistic benefits evolving because of the standardization. This aligns perfectly with the powercloud strategy that we have been pursuing for almost ten years – to provide a standardized engine room for the energy industry featuring companies of all sizes – from small startups to energy giants.
Source: ZfK (https://www.zfk.de/digitalisierung/it/alles-ist-auf-den-kooperationsgedanken-ausgerichtet, 2021-11-30)