GE-7:Energy advice for SMEs
The energy advice programme for SMEs is a programme developed by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology and implemented by the German Development Bank KfW. Through this programme, independent audits and consulting are offered to identify energy efficiency potentials in small and medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and increase the level of information on these potentials with SMEs. The advice is largely funded by the government and further incentives are available for the implementation of identified energy efficiency measures.
The energy advice programme for SMEs is a programme developed by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology and implemented by the German Development Bank KfW. Through this programme, independent audits and consulting are offered to identify energy efficiency potentials in small and medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and increase the level of information on these potentials with SMEs. The advice is largely funded by the government and further incentives are available for the implementation of identified energy efficiency measures (see GE-4).
Applications for an audit have to be made with a regional partner of KfW, for example, the Chamber of Commerce, economic development corporation or local energy agency. The program distinguishes between initial consultations and detailed advice.
- The initial consultation aims to identify energy efficiency potentials and weaknesses as well as to recommend appropriate measures.
- The detailed advice provides concrete proposals and action plans on implementation of energy and cost saving improvements.
The grant for the initial one to two-day consultation is 80% of the agreed daily rate, with a maximum of EUR 800 per consulting day, so a grant of maximum EUR 1,280. The grant for detailed advice is 60% of the agreed daily rate, with a maximum of EUR 800 per consulting day, so a grant of maximum of EUR 4,800.
The energy advice programme is a follow-up of the "Special Fund for Energy Efficiency in SMEs", which was launched on 20 February 2008. , 
Policy Information Expand this section for information on the key features of the policy, such as its date of introduction, categorization, main objective(s) and linkages with other policies.
Policy Instrument Type: Economic, Incentives & Subsidies, Information & Outreach
Position in the PyramidAbout Us
Start Date: 2008
|Supports||Voluntary agreements with German industry||Effort Defining|
|Supports||KfW Environmental and Energy Efficiency Programmes (formally ERP)||Supporting Measure|
|Supports||30 Pilot Network Project||Supporting Measure|
KfW (German development Bank)
Primary Objective: Energy
Providing energy advice in order to support investments that improve energy efficiency levels.
SMEs –whether self-employed or private company- with an energy bill of over EUR 5,000 per year at a single location in Germany.
Driver of energy consumption or emissions affected by policy: energy saving or energy efficiency improvement, knowledge levels
Implementation Information Expand this section for information on targets, monitoring, verification and enforcement regimes, and implementation requirements and tools.
All in target groups
Quantitative Target? no
Progress Monitored? yes
Verification Required? no
Requirements on the Target Group
Application for a grant goes via standardised route to a regional partner of KfW and applicants need to fill out a standardised final report on the initial consultation.
Support by Government
Complexity of Implementation
Initial audit identifies saving potentials according to overall and available knowledge of specific SME activity. Detailed audit develop implementation plan on case-specific basis.
Applicants only need to fill out standardised application forms and standardised final report on the initial consultation.
Impacts, Costs & Benefits Expand this section to find information on policy effectiveness and efficiency.
|Impact||Quantitative Estimate||Qualitative Estimate|
|Estimated effect on energy consumption or emissions||- In the period February 2008 - June 2010 a total of 10,400 energy consultations have been provided, of which 8383 initial consultations and 2017 detailed advices.  - In the 70 reports analysed for initial consultation, a total of 256 recommendations were included, an average of four per report. Recommendations most mentioned were in the area of the building envelope, lighting and heating. In the 37 detailed consultation reports analysed, a total of 162 measures were included. In four reports this was only one measure, in 17 reports six or more measures were proposed. The range of proposed actions was broad, with a focus on waste heat recovery and heating.  - 20% of the recommendations were already planned by the companies, 59% partially and 21% had no overlap with the already planned measures.  - Total savings as a result of the advice in the period February 2008-June 2010 were about 1920 GWh per year, of which 1.435 GWh annual savings as a result of initial advice and 205 GWh annual savings as a result of detailed consultations. Corresponding avoided CO2 emission are 624 kilotonnes per year in the same period. |
|Estimated costs/benefits for industry||Not applicable (no targets). - The costs of the audit vary strongly among participants. Initial consultations took an average of 2.7 days, costs for companies were on average EUR 888, ranging from EUR 558 to EUR 1,218 (representing the costs to companies after the subsidies). Detailed consultations took an average of 10.8 days, costs for companies were on average EUR 3,619, ranging from EUR 1,965 to EUR 5,272.  - Total investment costs for following energy saving measures are estimated to be EUR 666 million. Total cost savings per year are estimated to be 122 million, cumulated over the same period. |
|Estimated cost for government||Actual costs for the government per initial consultation ranged from EUR 1.171 (average 2008) to 1.243 (first half 2009). Actual costs per detailed consultation ranged from EUR 3300 (2008) to EUR 3963 (first half 2009). |
References & Footnotes
 KfW, Energieberatung Mittelstand, http://www.kfw.de/kfw/de/Inlandsfoerderung/Programmuebersicht/Energieberatung_Mittelstand/index.jsp. Accessed -2/04/2012
 Frahm, B-J et al, Evaluation des Förderprogramms „Energieeffizienzberatung“ als eine Komponente des Sonderfonds' Energieeffizienz in kleinen und mittleren Unternehmen (KMU), IREES and Fraunhofer Isi, Karlsruhe, 18 november 2010.