Coupled with renewables in other sectors, increasing EV deployment has put a strain on electricity grids, which will likely continue as the market grows. In response, utilities and grid operators are working with EV and charging OEMs to use EVs in VPPs, as a grid resource instead of a grid strain. According to Guidehouse Insights, VPPs can help EV owners save money, and in some cases, profit from their distributed energy resource (DER). In a period of market evolution, companies are forming partnerships and pilots throughout the VPP and EV industry to develop this new business model.

VPP software, at a basic level, can provide data for utility knowledge about households that have an EV and their charging patterns. Utilities can use this knowledge to bill at different rates and provide incentives based on time of use. They can also provide managed charging services. Guidehouse Insights recommends that utilities adjust their tariff structures to enable smart charging; EV manufacturers and charging infrastructure suppliers form partnerships and open standards; and VPP operators engage with customers and other stakeholders, according to the report.

The report, Developing Virtual Power Plant Applications for Managed EV Charging Platforms, analyses the types of construction and monetisation contracts prevalent in today's market and provides background on what has happened in the VPP market thus far, how these events affect industry players, and what actions they can take to prepare for the transition. An executive summary of the report is available for free download on the Guidehouse Insights website.