Energy efficiency – an opportunity for SMEs

Workshop of Certimac and partners in Italy on the role of SMEs in the decarbonisation process

There are 4.4 million active businesses in Italy. Of these, over 95 per cent are micro-enterprises (less than 10 employees) and almost 5 per cent are small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). These are influenced not only by economic competition at national and international level and the need to reduce (energy) costs, but also by a greater attention to environmental and climate challenges.

“But SMEs have difficulties in assessing information and they have a lack of time and human and economic resources to be dedicated to energy efficiency”, summarizes Luca Laghi from Certimac, the GEAR@SME partner together with ENEA as linked third party in the Italian Use Case, “furthermore, the energy market is fragmented and very complex.”

This is exactly where GEAR@SME comes in. The 40 participants in the workshop learn that the GEAR@SME approach has three dimensions: First, the approach of bringing SMEs together through a so-called “trusted partner”. This is an actor who already has a good relationship of trust with the SMEs and supports them in taking the path towards energy efficiency and climate protection. Secondly, the concept of the “collective approach”, i.e. that SMEs can save energy and protect the climate together and exchange ideas in the process. Thirdly, the concept of “multiple benefits”. This means that energy saving can bring companies further benefits beyond energy and cost savings.

“We are satisfied with the workshop”, says Luca Laghi afterwards, “I think we were able to draw a good attention to the topic and the participants took away a lot of knowledge”.