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Digital Water Company of the Year: Shortlist

For the company which made the greatest contribution to the advancement of digital technology in the water sector in 2018.

Shortlisted Nominees

 

EJ Water Cooperative

What is it?

EJ Water Cooperative is a forward-thinking water provider committed to pushing technological boundaries to give rural communities the services they need. Founded in 1989, EJ Water’s is the fastest growing water system in rural Illinois.

What has it done?

In a masterstroke of resource maximisation, EJ Water became the first utility to supply water and fibreoptic internet seamlessly through a single trench. 2018 also saw the launch of its new subsidiary, Innovative Wastewater Treatment Cooperative, offering specialist wastewater services to its rural customers alongside water and fibre internet.

What makes it special?

Using USDA funding to lay fibre and water lines together massively reduced the relative installation costs of both these vital amenities – an expenditure that normally amounts to 66% of telecom’s total outlay – simultaneously reducing EJ Water’s costs and diversifying their revenue stream.

Before EJ Water’s fibreoptic venture, average internet speeds in its service area were 0.5-2 mbps. Since launching Illinois Fiber Connect in June 2018, more than 3,600 people have expressed interest in getting 1Gbps fibre internet via the scheme. EJ Water projects reaching 50,000 connections in the next 5 years.

 

In 2018, EJ Water’s subsidiary, Innovative Wastewater Treatment Cooperative (IWTC), began providing wastewater services to isolated rural communities. Through IWTC, EJ Water already offer combined water, wastewater, and fibre internet services via 100 new connections; a further 200 will follow in the coming months. By maximising connectivity, EJ Water offerrural communities a lifeline just when they need it most.

 

Evoqua Water Technologies

What is it?

The NYSE-listed water equipment and service company formed out of the ashes of USFilter.

What has it done?

In 2018 Evoqua simply reinvented the way customers interact with a water treatment supplier through the launch of its Water One service across North America. A revolutionary concept that combines the firm’s water service knowhow with data analytics, Water One continuously monitors water systems allowing company personnel to pre-empt issues before an alarm is triggered and gives clients unrivalled 24/7 support.

What makes it special?

Clients including a state-of-the art laboratory in Florida and a hospital in Massachusetts needed a constant supply of high-purity water at all times with zero margin for error. Through the Water One service, Evoqua foresees an issue that may put water quality at risk, and arrives on site before it happens, allowing the highly demanding healthcare sector to operate worry-free about water quality.

Evoqua also ensures the security of ground-breaking research aimed at solving the world’s greatest challenges. A project at MIT’s nano facility saw Water One remotely monitoring 30 critical water quality data points to the parts per billion range in real-time, optimising water system performance and effortlessly meeting the exacting requirements of nanotechnology research.

 

With 730 customers already brought onto the platform in 2018, Evoqua is exhibiting breathtaking pace in connecting its vast customer base, meaning the benefits of digital water systems are felt immediately in industrial, commercial and university applications.

 

Utilis

What is it?

Utilis provides a leak detection service that is quite literally out of this world. Adapting satellite technology designed to find water on other planets, the company offers an innovative way to pinpoint water losses all over the globe. Using satellite images, Utilis looks for treated water’s unique spectral signature. No matter the type of pipe or system the water is coming from, Utilis can find it.

What has it done?

2018 saw Utilis take full advantage of its international potential, building its global business offer with a new San Diego office working alongside its Israeli HQ.

 

Besides expanding its US project list significantly, 2018 saw the firm enter the Australian and Chinese markets for the first time and solidify its business, converting a significant proportion of what had been pilot projects into fully-realised service contracts.

What makes it special?

After opening its doors at the end of 2017, Utilis’ San Diego office doubled in size last year, with the firm’s US project list growing by 11.5% and accounting for 50% of the company’s total business.

 

With similar growth rates in its non-US interests, the firm stepped into the Chinese and Australian markets for the first time in 2018, competing for and winning contracts against established international competitors.

After building its impressive client base with a slew of successful pilot schemes, 2018 saw Utilis consolidated its portfolio with a stunning increase in customers converting from pilot projects to permanent, product-as-service packages: up 35% on 2017.

 

Veolia Water Technologies

What is it?

Part of the global Veolia group, Veolia Water Technologies (VWT) is a water treatment solutions and service provider with a global reach.

What has it done?

2018 saw VWT launch its game-changing Aquavista platform, a four-offer, fully cloudified digital service to optimise water treatment plant operation around the world. By consolidating and expanding its previous digital offers and building in world-leading process expertise, VWT have produced a holistic service structure that maximises the value of client data, and allows users to get the most from their resources.

What makes it special?

The four Aquavista offers – Plant, Insight, Portal, and Assist – are linked into a common, cloud-based, data library system bolstering the data resources available to each and setting new standards for data handling and cyber security.

Cloudifying its water treatment management systems means VWT offers truly automated plant operation services (Aquavista Plant), with 80 clients already integrating the offer across Europe, the US, the Middle East, and China. Since implementing the AI and process expertise driven service, clients have reported truly remarkable upturns in efficiency: BlueKolding’s Agtrup WWTP seeing a staggering 23% reduction in energy consumption, a 46% drop in precipitation chemical use, and an 80% increase in stormwater capacity coupled with an 83% reduction in overflows.

 

With more than 1000 installations using VWT’s Aqauvista services to gain process insight across 20 countries, the French firm are bringing the benefits of data-driven operations management to more clients than ever before.

 

The Global Water Awards 2018 is proudly sponsored by:

Evoqua logo, links to Evoqua homepage

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