Customer value for business model innovation: Case of O&M services in Swedish Wind Industry
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Wind energy industry has been growing fast during last years, and the demand for operation and maintenance (O&M) services has been increasing rapidly. As wind turbine manufacturing companies have been focusing more on selling rather than after sales services, this created problems in O&M, which started to influence the overall profitability of wind energy projects. In the current conditions, business model innovation in O&M services is needed. While initial step in business model innovation is identifying what is valuable for customer (customer value), it is not clear what is of customer value in B2B context, how to identify it and what is valuable for industrial customers in O&M overall and in wind energy industry in particular. Therefore, the purpose of our research was to explore customer value as an input in the process of business model innovation in B2B context.
In order to reach the goal of our research, inductively based approach was used for multiple case study of O&M services customers in wind energy industry in Sweden. Semi structured interviews were conducted with a representative from each company. The parts of their business models connected to wind turbine O&M were mapped, as well as customer value was outlined. The connection between customer value and business model components was analyzed within each case and then the results were compared across the cases.
The main findings of our study are as follows. Business model in B2B context serves as the frame of reference for customer value formation. Characteristics of business model components, in particular key activities and key resources, as well as the intentions for further business model development become more specific underlying criteria of value proposition assessment. In wind energy industry in Sweden there is a core customer value to get the highest possible energy production, shared by all studied cases. Differences in customer value among O&M customers were identified in their perceptions of customer value of O&M service (contracts, SCADA system, reports, and education) and relationship with service providers. Such business model related criteria as competence, characteristics of fleet, involvement in O&M activities, and intention for development of O&M involvement explain why customer value differs among the studied customers of O&M services in wind energy industry in Sweden.
Customer business model should be used by managers in both wind energy industry and other contexts for understanding customer value in a holistic way. Further customer segmentation should be done based on customer business model related criteria, and in the context of wind energy industry the criteria identified in this study can be used. What is more, O&M service providers should allow more flexibility in contracts and give additional attention to customer relational mechanisms in their business models as the source of customer value.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 100 p.
Customer value, business model, wind energy, operation and maintenance
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-26260OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-26260DiVA: diva2:739044
Subject / course
2014-06-02, Halmstad, 08:15 (English)
ProjectsBusiness model innovation: A case study of maintenance services for the wind power industry