I’m fascinated by the intersection of the energy transition and how it’s being shaped by changing customer demands, advancements in technology and community expectations.
As one of Australia's oldest and most recognisable brands – with more than 3.95 million customer services – AGL has a great opportunity to be at the forefront of changing consumer needs and new business models, as long as we continue to evolve and innovate.
Our Home of Innovation
Innovation isn’t new to AGL. From lighting Australia’s first gas street lamp, we’ve gone on to lead in the business of energy transition and were proud to be named on The Australian Financial Review and Inventium’s list of most innovative companies in 2020.
That said, we wanted a different kind of focus for innovation – which is why last month we launched AGL Next.
“AGL Next is our home of innovation, allowing us to explore, experiment and test new ideas across energy, telecommunications and beyond. It brings together our teams, partners and customers to develop answers to big questions about how we can create a better future for our customers and communities. ”
We saw this come to life recently with our Electric Vehicle (EV) Subscription Service – recognising the leadership role we have to play in developing and using the best technologies to provide our customers with choice and flexibility in an evolving market.
An important part of AGL Next is how we collaborate with customers and partners to explore new solutions. We first started testing our EV subscription service with customers late last year – iterating and evolving in response to their feedback.
An entrepreneurial mindset
It’s essential that we complement our own thinking with outside perspectives to create diversity of thought and better understand the global trends, opportunities and challenges shaping tomorrow.
That’s why we’re deeply passionate about collaborating with start-ups, entrepreneurs, the investment community, universities and other likeminded businesses to spark new ideas about how we better serve our customers, now and in the future, with a focus on:
- Decarbonisation – Our Climate Statement recognises three major forces driving Australia’s energy transition: customer demand, how communities act and how technology evolves. We’re looking at new solutions, technologies and business models to support the transition to a low-carbon future.
- Decentralisation - Decentralised energy resources – such as solar, batteries and electric vehicles – empower customers to become active contributors. We’re interested in tools and platforms to put power back into the hands of our customers, making sure that no one is left behind.
- Connectivity – We’re looking at ways to leverage or enable connectivity between people, assets and places – recognising that they’re inherently intertwined.
- Circularity – There’s great opportunity to reduce, re-use and convert resources to protect the world's finite resources. We’re interested in opportunities that can leverage our unique capability across assets, markets and customers to turn various forms of ‘waste’ into value.
Recognising that there’s no one size fits all approach to engagement, we’re connecting with communities in different ways – from co-creation with customers to go-to-market partnerships and investments. Since January we’ve met with more than 100 start-ups from 15 countries, hosted over 30 workshops with 14 investors and collected more than 230 insights to build on our knowledge and further accelerate AGL’s growth.
We’re continuing to explore new partnerships and investments to develop solutions that are truly customer centric as part of AGL Next – and that includes empowering our people to be part of the innovation process.
“As Australia’s largest investor in renewable technologies we’ve embraced a cleaner energy future, but we know there’s more work to be done. The way Australians produce, share and consume energy is changing rapidly and AGL Next will play a pivotal role in this transition.”
We’ll continue to work with other businesses that may share similar challenges to ours, as well as start-ups and entrepreneurs that are passionate about solving problems. Whether it’s building new lines of business, unleashing the value of our data, evolving our technology platforms, or embedding digital experiences into more places, we’re committed to delivering progress for our customers and the communities in which we live and work.
To get in touch, reach out to us at FutureBusiness@agl.com.au.