The Innovation Link

About us

Ofgem’s Innovation Link is a ‘one stop shop’ offering support on energy regulation to businesses looking to launch new products, services or business models. Whatever your proposition, we can help you understand what Ofgem rules might mean for you. We have supported start-ups, corporations, councils and not-for-profits.

You can contact us by emailing innovationlink@ofgem.gov.uk.

We are here to help as many organisations as possible, so we will occasionally publish guides on how regulation affects particular business models. We will do this while handling your commercial information with sensitivity. You can find out more about how we use the information you share with us and how to let us know what information you think is commercially sensitive

What we offer

We will provide you with fast, frank feedback on your issues. The advice we give is an informal steer from our team rather than an official view from Ofgem, so all our feedback is subject to our legal disclaimer. Here's more information on what fast, frank feedback can and cannot offer.

In many cases we can help you go ahead within current regulation. But where our regulation prevents the launch of a product or service that could benefit consumers, we can also consider other forms of support. For instance, we can look at providing a binding steer that a particular approach to running a trial would be acceptable, or provide comfort about our approach to enforcement. For licence holders (such as suppliers or distribution network operators) we can help them apply for a derogation (exemption) from their licence obligations. We approach this type of 'regulatory sandbox' support on a case by case basis. 

What's next

We are currently considering how to evolve the sandbox service to incorporate what we have learnt in running the regulatory sandbox in 2017 and 2018. One of the key insights from these experiences was that many of the rules that innovators want relief from are owned by industry or Government. 

Having seen that many innovative business models could be trialled with changes to the Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC) we worked with the code administrator, ELEXON, to enable it to offer derogations from the BSC. Before we were able to launch an expanded sandbox service, it became clear that forthcoming changes brought about by the European Electricity Balancing Guidelines (EB GL) might mean that many BSC derogations are not possible. We are awaiting the outcome of the interpretation of the EB GL before we make a decision on whether derogations to the BSC can be provided.

We are open to hearing ideas about how our service could evolve. You can contact us by emailing innovationlink@ofgem.gov.uk.

Publications and updates

  • Published: 31st Jan 2019
  • Agendas, minutes and presentations
  • 1 Associated documents
Invitation to our Local Energy and the energy system transition event to discuss the emerging opportunities and challenges.

  • Published: 23rd Oct 2018
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
This document summarises the outcome of the Innovation Link's second regulatory sandbox window and the trials it will enable.

  • Published: 23rd Oct 2018
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
Ofgem's Innovation Link launched the regulatory sandbox in February 2017. This document sets out what we've learnt so far from the sandbox process.

  • Published: 18th Oct 2018
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
This document explains what the Innovation Link's fast, frank feedback service can and cannot do.

  • Published: 7th Sep 2018
  • Factsheets
  • 1 Associated documents
This document summarises the outcome of the Innovation Link's first regulatory sandbox window.

  • Published: 7th Sep 2018
  • Factsheets
  • 1 Associated documents
This document summarises what a regulatory sandbox is. The sandbox is offered by Ofgem's Innovation Link.

  • Published: 7th Sep 2018
  • Factsheets
  • 1 Associated documents
This disclaimer applies when the Innovation Link make a statement to a person that gives them informal feedback on their proposed innovation.

  • Published: 3rd Jul 2018
  • Guidance
  • 0 Associated documents
This note sets out how to notify the Innovation Link whether information you provide is commercially confidential.

  • Published: 3rd Jul 2018
  • Guidance
  • 0 Associated documents
This is the Innovation Link's confidentiality policy, summarising how we treat the information you provide to us.

  • Published: 12th Jun 2018
  • Guidance
  • 0 Associated documents
This privacy notice tells you how we collect, use and protect personal information in the Innovation Link.

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