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Germany | Rheinische Post | 19. Juni 2015

E-mobility – the spark is missing

The German national conference for e-mobility underlined once more the national goal of having 1 million electric cars on Germany’s roads by 2020. The German government has suggested purchase incentives that could initiate the breakthrough of the new technology. The speakers admitted that the goal of 1 million cars was ambitious. Nevertheless, they maintain that objective. Thomas Becker, an automobile expert at Arthur D. Little, points out that the German market is extremely price sensitive. German car buyers calculate the price-performance ratio very carefully. Electric cars are still more expensive than those with combustion engines.

Becker believes that it will take more than an ecological idea to convince German buyers. Nevertheless, he points out that infrastructure and technology have improved a lot within recent years. Still, a bigger number of electric cars will be required to spread the e-mobility infrastructure. Becker believes that monetary incentives will help the new technology to escape from that vicious circle. Company cars may be a particular key for achieving a sustainable breakthrough for e-mobility.

UK | Renewable Energy Focus | 15. Juni 2015

GCC Solar Energy: Turning plans into reality

This online feature article is adapted from Arthur D. Little’s recent Viewpoint on reviving momentum that the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has lost in past years for developing solar energy technology in the region. The GCC has one of the highest rates of insolation, and therefore huge potential to benefit from solar energy as its primary energy source. Almost all of the countries in the GCC have declared plans for significant solar energy initiatives – particularly Saudi Arabia, with its goals of implementing 41GW of solar energy over the long term.

However, the high ambition across the region appears to have lapsed since the various announcements in recent years. The article talks about key areas affecting the progress, including policy support, implementation vehicles, industrial strategy and participation of the private sector in the initiatives, as well as R&D, human capital development and investment funding.

UK | The Sunday Times | 15. Juni 2015

Rise of the Machines

In this feature article about the rise of machine-to-machine (M2M) technology, Arthur D. Little is quoted predicting that 21 million connected devices will be used in homes in offices in the Nordics by 2017, including 45% of vehicles. M2M technology in vehicles will enhance the safety and reliability of those vehicles, as well as make them more environmentally friendly.

UK | European Communications | 15. Juni 2015

Big Data survey: Telcos split on role of CDO as reality doesn’t match the hype

In this feature article about whether telcos should hire a chief data officer (CDO) to manage their Big Data strategies, Arthur D. Little manager Vikram Gupta is quoted on his views that organizations should embrace this new job description. He says that a CDO dedicated to mining, analyzing and management of data, as well as coordinating its use across the organization, is important for tapping the power of Big Data. ADL principal Shinichi Akayama is also quoted, stating how a lot of unrealistic hype has been created around Big Data and its monetary value to telcos, as payoffs from exploiting Big Data do not come easy. He warns that organizations will need to expect a lot of work once a Big Data platform has been introduced. However, he believes embracing Big Data as a strategy will help the operations of the organization considerably.

UK | Transport for Cape Town | 08. Juni 2015

Transport Development Index reveals cost of transport in Cape Town in terms of time and money

The City of Cape Town’s Transport Development Index (TDI) – the first to be developed in Africa – reveals that 95% of commuters making use of public transport in the city fall within the low and low to medium income groups. Furthermore, the low income group spends on average 45% of their monthly household income on transport. The article discusses the TDI, which was developed by Transport for Cape Town (TCT), the City’s transport authority, to evaluate the accessibility and related costs of transport to different income groups and users across the city. Following on from the TDI, Cape Town was evaluated in terms of the Arthur D. Little Mobility Index that is used to measure cities all over the world. The Mobility Index uses 19 different transport-related assessment criteria such as the financial attractiveness of public transport; the share of public transport in the modal split; roads density; cycle path density; smart card penetration; car sharing performance; public transport frequency; traffic-related fatalities; mean travel time to work; and density of vehicles registered, among others. With an overall score of 37 points, the City of Cape Town ranks 73rd out of 85 cities worldwide and 4th out of six in Africa.

Germany | Wirtschaftswoche | 05. Juni 2015

Final of the ears

High-tech giant Apple recently announced plans to enter the music streaming market. Competitors such as Spotify and Deezer will struggle to compete with Apple’s new business model – already the current market leaders are making losses. Clemens Schwaiger, digital media expert of Arthur D. Little, confirms that the decisive battle for music streaming is just ahead. Apple has not yet published concrete plans concerning the new streaming application. Nevertheless, experts believe streaming may be the perfect add-on to Apple’s iTunes. The company will offer a service that is slightly cheaper than competitors’ services. Schwaiger believes that Apple will soon become one of the big players in the music business – for the simple fact that the Californians have a bigger budget than any other company around the world.

With 800 million users worldwide, iTunes has massive potential. If only 10 percent of iTunes users complete subscriptions for the new streaming service, it will easily overtake Spotify with its 60 million users. For record companies, Apple’s entry may lead to bigger earning in the beginning. Some experts believe Apple may also be interested in the music marketing sector at some point. In that case, it will soon become a powerful competitor to record companies as well.

UK | The Energy Industry Times | 04. Juni 2015

A triple lock approach

As the UK prepares for a new generation of nuclear power plants, The Energy Industry Times analyzes its preparation and what others might learn from a country that boasts a long and solid nuclear history.  The article discusses how the UK hopes that its detailed approach will not only guarantee the implementation and operation of safe designs but will also help avoid the construction delays and cost overruns seen at the Olkiluoto 3 (OL3) plant being built in Finland by Areva. Michael Kruse, Partner and Head of the Central European Energy & Utilities Practice at Arthur D. Little is quoted as saying, “At OL3 not all issues – such as I&C for example – had been fixed, which caused delays due to the Finnish regulator STUK not accepting the design. There have been challenges in managing the design requirements. During the construction phase, new design and safety requirements have been imposed on Areva. Also the safety and design criteria, as well as relevant technical standards, were not clarified early enough. There was a lack of transparency on how requirements at plant level would be translated into the design of systems, structures and components, which caused acceptance issues after they were installed. It was also not clear which regulatory approvals would be needed during the project (hold points), and which were known and understood by the licensee and vendor.” Kruse noted that for the owner it is crucial to have an “agile” organisation that is able to cope with design changes and manage the regulator supply chain interface to prevent the schedule slipping.

Germany | Handelsblatt | 29. Mai 2015

Nuclear power stations maintain a risk

The ideological battles for the future of nuclear power are over. The nuclear power phase-out has already been decided. Critics worry about the provisions of German energy service providers. The estimated costs for the dismantling of nuclear power facilities and equipment are €70 billion, whereas companies have calculated €38 billion only. However, Michael Kruse, Arthur D. Little’s energy expert, points out that storage of the radioactive materials, rather than the dismantling itself, is the main problem. A radioactive waste repository has not been found so far.

This problem will prevail for at least a century. Experts demand that the costs of the dismantling be socialized and decommissioned into public stock. This may be the only sustainable solution for the financial issue. The financial burden is too big for energy providers alone. Energy service providers have already announced that they are planning to go to court against the government’s nuclear power phase-out decision in order to receive compensation. Public stock might be an acceptable compromise for both sides.

Austria | medianet | 28. Mai 2015

Escaping from the OTTs’ stranglehold

Data-consuming OTTs such as Netflix and Spotify challenge both internet service providers and traditional media with their new online streaming offers. Telecommunication companies complain that they are investing into modern networks while OTTs are making the profit. However, the new study by Arthur D. Little and Exane BNP Paribas predicts that the upcoming OTT boom will provide opportunities for internet service providers as well. ADL and Exane experts expect demand for fast broadband connections to grow more quickly, enabling providers to develop new offerings to make larger profits. OTTs will also challenge traditional media such as radio, TV and Pay TV. Arthur D. Little projects that prices for content will increase. Traditional TV channels may react by developing their own OTT offerings. In Austria the convergence between media and telcos has just started: market leader ORF has acquired Flimmit, and T-Mobile has partnered with Netflix.

Sweden | InnovationManagement.se | 27. Mai 2015

Systemizing Breakthrough Innovation: Study Results

Most companies recognize the need for breakthrough innovation – it can change the fundamental bases of competition, “rewrite the rules” of an industry and transform the prospects of the successful innovator. There is no one-size-fits-all model for how best to respond to this challenge. Arthur D. Little surveyed over 80 large organizations to explore how to deliver a consistent pipeline of radically new products, performance features, business models and market space. In this article, Ben Thuriaux- Alemán, Fredrik Härenstam and Richard Eagar of Arthur D. Little, discuss how serial breakthrough innovation is real and achievable for any company.