More than half of the global energy consumption comes from heating buildings. District heating is one of the largest opportunities to make heating of buildings more sustainable. It unlocks the potential of fossil free heat sources such as geothermal and waste heat, replacing the individual oil or gas boilers that most buildings use today. However, these sustainable heating grids get very complex and the current IT systems are unsuitable to design and control these systems. Gradyent enables district heating networks to transform into more sustainable systems. The company offers a cloud platform solution to create digital twins of heating networks, powered by AI and analytics, to optimize temperature, flow and pressure, thus minimizing energy usage, CO2 emissions and operating costs, while maintaining the right levels of end-user heat supply. Gradyent works for large heating networks in Europe such as Eneco, Ennatuurlijk, Helen and Wien Energie. 

Within Gradyent, Michel de Koning (CCO) is responsible for all commercial activities. De Koning: “When I joined Gradyent, we had been working with Aexus in Germany for quite some time already. And although we were well aware that starting in a new region is not easy, Aexus had been able to engage and start up sales cycles with a wide variety of prospects in the DACH region already, making it a successful collaboration. 

So, we decided to add the Czech Republic and Poland to the scope.  This extension turned out to be a good bet too. The Aexus team here is highly strategic in their market approach. They don’t merely reach out to the key personas in the relevant prospects, but understand that a multi-level sales strategy is required, which means they are also involving other stakeholders and influencers.”

Gradyent is an ambitious organization that wishes to scale up fast. De Koning: “Aexus allows us to do just that. In Poland, we were able to engage with new accounts at the right level within a very short period of time. Also, the local Aexus team speaks the relevant languages and understands the culture, which makes a real difference. We therefore decided to extend the collaboration to include the Nordic countries as well.”

Aexus’ flexible engagement model is making it easy for Gradyent to experiment. De Koning: “With Aexus, we can be start in new markets in a matter of weeks. The risk for us is relatively low: if it works, we double down on it and if it doesn’t, we can easily shift resources to other areas or segments. Because of Aexus’ local presence via teams of native speakers, we can be a lot more effective than we would be if we had to do things entirely by ourselves.”