It’s no secret that, with deeper systems integration, new technologies, and a focus on efficient and alternative energies, the electrical industry is growing and changing in ways that were hard to predict even just a decade ago. As it turns out, however, Pike Research has made a business out of predicting market trends, and it has made some forecasts that shine favorably for electrical contractors.

At the end of May, Pike issued a report that predicts the worldwide market for submetering technology and services will grow from $771 million in 2012 to $1.58 billion in 2020 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.4 percent.

“To address the growing demand for submetering capabilities, traditional leaders in the building controls and equipment industry have worked to integrate submetering technology into their energy-efficiency solutions and platforms,” said Eric Bloom, a Pike senior analyst. “Many firms have made major acquisitions of submeter vendors in recent years to round out their energy-efficiency platforms, while others are implementing software and services platforms that provide building owners with actionable insights that save money and make facility management easier.”

Also in May, Pike released a report that states the market opportunity for smart grid technologies that enable the integration of renewables would significantly expand, bolstering both markets. Pike predicted revenue from smart grid renewables integration will reach almost $4 billion in 2012 and climb to $13 billion by 2018. The sector’s CAGR over those six years will be nearly 23 percent.

Pike senior analyst Peter Asmus said, so far, U.S. countries have been afraid of investing in renewable energy, but that fear will change as utilities invest in the ability of the smart grid to lower costs associated with integrating renewables.

At the beginning of June, Pike reported that the advanced metering infrastructure management services (AMS) industry would grow to 91.2 million endpoints by 2020. Currently, 25.2 million endpoints are covered by management services contracts. This trend suggests utilities will require a growing number of third-party service providers for their smart meters

“Managed smart metering may be the best kept secret in the smart grid market,” said Bob Lockhart, Pike senior analyst. “AMS already has noticeable activity around the world, with plans afoot for quite a bit more. It is a new market today, but not for much longer.”

Finally, Pike released a report predicting total revenue from the global smart energy market would reach $420 billion by 2015, up from $222 billion in 2011. Pike Research defines smart energy as “the range of efficient technological options available to providing electricity in a distributed fashion, either for local use or for grid support.”

The reports, respectively titled, “Electricity Submeters,” “Smart Grid Renewables Integration,” “AMI Managed Services,” and “Smart Energy Annual Report 2012” are available at www.pikeresearch.com.