Innovation for Acea

In its 2019-2022 Business Plan Acea has included innovation investments worth 500 million euros with projects covering all the Group’s sectors.

Innovation is a central and constituent part of Acea Group’s strategy, not only in technological evolution terms but also in the adoption of a new culture in which innovation is a shared value at all company levels. We believe that if we get our people involved, motivated, and provide them with the adequate tools, they can contribute to the innovation of our company and our services.
Innovation is a lever that affects transversally all areas of the company, driving change and promoting continuous development and flexibility in terms of processes and in pursuing solutions.

Our new strategic and cultural approach introduces an extended concept of openness to internal ideas and resources as well as to technological solutions, tools and skills from external innovative entities, especially startups, SMEs, universities, research institutes, large corporations and consulting firms.

Acea’s innovation process

Innovation at Acea:

  • is transversal and shared between the different Industrial Areas
  • is open to the innovation ecosystem outside
  • is both incremental and radical
  • explores new businesses
  • aspires to create new business models for Acea’s future

Benefits:

  • a single and strategic vision of innovation
  • increased knowledge sharing and synergy between different Areas
  • optimum use of resources
  • improved Time to Market
  • early adoption of new technologies and innovative business models


The Innovation area is part of this new ecosystem, a new way of interfacing with the outside world and promoting the culture of innovation and entrepreneurship.

As an innovation hub and collector of new ideas, the Innovation area facilitates value creation, promotes collaboration with the outside ecosystem, and encourages individual participation, to take on future challenges.
Ensures the development of innovation ‘as a service’. What does this mean? The logic behind the unit’s work is to facilitate innovation within the Group and support the business, following the Group’s innovation model, to generate value for Acea.

Acea’s main innovation activities

  • Safeguarding the innovation ecosystem: strengthening the national and international network for the purposes of extending the scouting basin and researching new technologies
  • Innovation pipeline enrichment: continuous scouting, constantly in contact with the main innovation contexts to identify potential partners and innovative solutions capable of satisfying the Group’s needs
  • Innovation Governance: Managing innovation effectively, promoting a shared model of innovation, facilitating collaboration at Group level, and defining new tools to carry out activities and projects (e.g. creating registers and a purchasing process dedicated to innovative start-ups and SMEs)
  • Smart services: involving the Group’s Industrial Areas and Companies in the development of a new generation of digital services in the e-mobility, health care, energy, and security sectors
  • Promoting a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship: encouraging internal innovation potential through employee entrepreneurship programs and facilitating collaboration and participation via workshops, calls for ideas and challenges

 

Acea's innovation in figures

30+
Experimental undertakings that have led to projects on which to invest for the future of the Group
10+
internal and external training and “idea generating” events and initiatives
10
national and international partnership agreements
2
Internal Communities
Acea’s innovation process

Openness and contamination are two key elements of Acea's innovation.
On one hand, Acea is open to the innovation world outside the company, nurturing a network of relationships with universities, research centers, technology partners, start-ups and SMEs. On the other, it aims to create an ecosystem that encourages collaboration and new ideas, promoting workshops and contests that facilitate the exchange of competences and knowledge.