ERG and Innovation

Our Group has always been attentive to the research and development of new technologies in the Energy world.

Since 2016 we have "opened" our business to the innovation generated by the world of start-ups with the aim of finding solutions that make it possible to assist in the management and operations of our assets and to embrace disruptive ideas that can give us a competitive advantage over other operators in the energy sector.

This process is known as Open Innovation, i.e. the outsourcing of technological innovation to bring specialist skills already developed by other new businesses into the company and to jointly develop the most interesting solutions through technology, commercial and/or financial partnerships.

CDI Labs

CDI Labs is an initiative established in 2016 and promoted by the SAFM (Scuola di Alta Formazione al Management) of Turin, with the collaboration of the CDI (Collège Des Ingénieurs), to encourage the encounter between large industrial groups (ERG, Atlantia, CLN and FCA) and innovative technological startups ready for the market, from 10 European countries and from Israel.

The project is divided into three annual cycles characterised by the repetition of identification, selection and assessment activities for each year.

In 2018, we sought open innovation initiatives with high potential for application in Group activities, identifying two possible solutions:
  • Intellium for the possible experimentation of safety shoes equipped with sensors able to detect and report safety problems involving the personnel wearing them, aimed at improving safety monitoring in the production sites. 
  • TRC – Thermal Recycling Composites for reuse of the disposed wind blades. The company is a spin-off of the Spanish National Research Council, created for the commercial exploitation of a patent. This technology allows, through a temperature-controlled thermal process, removal of the resin from fibreglass or carbon composites and the extraction of fibres to be reused in new composites. This meets the recycling requirements for fibreglass from the replaced wind turbine blades as part of repowering/ re-blading projects.
We are conducting further in-depth studies and evaluations of the possible launch of field trials for both projects.

Matchmaking Day

Matchmaking Day
The first "Matchmaking Day" was held on 6 October 2016, at the Castello del Valentino in Turin. The idea for the initiative, organised by XEI Labs, came from the  SAFM (Scuola di Alta Formazione al Management di Torino), with the cooperation of the CDI (Collège des Ingénieurs), and seeks to promote meetings between technological start-ups and major industrial groups (ERG, Atlantia, CLN and FCA).

The companies, who have worked with XEI Labs over the last few months to implement this new and original Open Innovation formula, thus had an opportunity to learn first-hand about 25 structured and established start-ups, seeking to offer innovative products and services.

The 25 start-ups, from 10 European countries and Israel and selected by XEI Labs to meet the innovation needs expressed by the four industrial groups, had the chance to describe their offers, illustrating the characteristics of their products and the range of applications developed in the fields of energy, cyber security, mobility, geolocation and industry 4.0.

Over the next few months, XEI Labs will assist the companies involved in establishing commercial and operating relationships with those start-ups considered of particular interest for meeting their respective development strategies.