Helping innovators to design new business models using a unique mix of energy, engineering and commercial expertise

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Business model innovation is just as vital to Net Zero as technological innovation

Energy Systems Catapult is driving innovation in business modelling to unlock value and support credible, investable routes to market for zero carbon companies.

Well-designed business models help companies to de-risk new innovations, streamline operations and maximise the value they create for customers. At Energy Systems Catapult we take a whole systems approach to business models design, working with people throughout the sector to better understand the needs and challenges they face.

We support zero carbon companies to unlock value and find credible, investable routes to market. This is brought together by our unique mix of energy, engineering and commercial experts who can help identify, design, and validate new business models.

The Business Model Innovation team utilise a range of methods, tools and experts, including:

  • Assessing new and emerging business models in energy and future market opportunities and barriers.
  • Designing and iterating new business models by exploring markets, customers and approaches.
  • Assessing existing business models and exploring risks and opportunities for the future.
  • Designing tests to de-risk business models and provide assurance.
  • Creating go-to-market strategies with business plans, commercial models and product roadmaps.

We work with a range of organisations

Start-ups and scale-ups

Innovators with disruptive new ideas wanting to ground them in viable business models, looking to grow their position, seek investment or refine their approach.

Product and service companies in the energy sector

Looking to understand the future risks and opportunities of existing business models, or design, test and launch new innovations to the market.


Local authorities, community groups and local partnerships

Organisations looking at new approaches that will help local areas transition to Net Zero

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arbnco case study: How to make SMEs more energy efficient and cut energy bills?

What we offer

Designing, testing and evaluating innovative Business Models with support from Energy Systems Catapult capabilities.

Understanding New Energy Markets

Identifying and understanding the market for new energy products, services and business models. Building evidence for product design, or to inform future clients and investors.

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Business Model Health Check

Assessing strengths and weaknesses of business models, with simple tests to de-risk. Expert recommendations for appealing to customers, partners and investors.

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Commercial Analysis

Quantifying new opportunities in the market and using our benchmarks to stress test your financial assumptions. Leading to stronger investment cases to scale your business.

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Transition to Net Zero

Working with local organisations (e.g. Local Authorities, Community Groups, Private Sector) to understand how to finance and deliver Net Zero. Including emerging concepts like Smart Local Energy Systems and Energy Service Companies.

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Consumer Insight and Proposition Design

Working with our in-house experts offering a range of services including on consumer research, proposition design, user experience (UX) and consumer trials.

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Harnessing Digital and Data

Working with our in-house experts offering a range of services, tools and expertise, such as data science, algorithms and artificial intelligence.

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Markets, Policy and Regulation

Working with our in-house experts offering a deep understanding of policy and regulatory challenges for low carbon innovators.

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How to work with us

Energy Systems Catapult offers technical, commercial and policy expertise to drive Net Zero innovation across the whole energy system.

We are not-for-profit, independent and technology-agnostic – building a trusted track record of delivering thought leadership, collaborative R&D and commercial commissions – so are uniquely placed to take on the challenges that others cannot tackle.

We use our grant-funding to develop capabilities, tools and labs – from world-class Net Zero modelling and cutting-edge systems engineering, through to digital and data science and real-world innovation trials that drive start-ups to success.

Supporting, convening and advising government, academia, industry, local/regional authorities, investors and SMEs to create new markets that unleash innovation and define the pathway to Net Zero.

Collaborate with us

We work with partners from the public and private sectors to secure funding and collectively deliver the thought leadership and innovation projects that tackle the hardest challenges in the way to Net Zero.

Commission us

We offer technical, commercial and policy expertise through our independent evidence and insights to identify and deliver Net Zero innovation priorities. Then actively support clients to develop actionable plans for implementation.

Case Studies

Business Model Innovation for Start-ups

Scottish proptech firm arbnco developed the Digital Energy Efficiency Platform (DEEP) under Government funded “Boosting Access for SMEs to Energy Efficiency” innovation programme.

DEEP aims to eliminate the common barriers SMEs face in tackling energy efficiency, such as high upfront and transactional costs, economies of scale and difficulties accessing finance.

Energy Systems Catapult provided arbnco with Business Model Innovation support to find or develop a sustainable model that facilitates investment in energy efficiency retrofit/refurbishment projects by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) – which account for 99% of all businesses in the UK and are responsible for over 50% of energy use.

DEEP centralises building data sets and delivers bespoke retrofit strategies tailored to each individual building, including costs and finance options, and a business case for implementing energy efficiency.

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Energy Launchpad case study: Ventive Home retrofit-in-a-box explores service model

Collaborate with us

Helping SMEs identify, design, test, refine and validate innovative Business Models to unlock value and support credible, investable routes to market for zero carbon innovations.

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Commission us

Helping established energy companies understand the future risks and opportunities of existing business models, or design, test and launch new innovative business models to the market.

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Want to know more?

Find out more about how Energy Systems Catapult can help you and your teams