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Water Company of the Year

For the water company that made the most significant contribution to the development of the international water sector in 2022.

Shortlisted Nominees


Aegea Saneamento

What is it?

The privately-owned concessionaire and utility owner providing water and wastewater services to 27 million people across Brazil.

What has it done?

In 2022, Aegea led the charge in revolutionising the lives and livelihoods of millions of Brazilians. Its relentless push to make piped sanitation a reality was enhanced by the delivery of an intelligent infrastructure platform designed to optimise its asset portfolio in real time. The acquisition of Corsan, negotiated in December, gives it a new growth angle enthusiastically supported by its international investor base.

What makes it special?

Aegea’s expansionist mindset is intrinsically aligned with the economic future of its home country. Every dollar it invests now to bring 21st-century water services to millions of under-served Brazilians will boost the country’s GDP and global competitiveness exponentially.

The ‘Infra Inteligente’ initiative, completed in 2022, transformed 156,000 drone-captured photographs into an interactive digital 3D map of 29,000 physical assets across 13 Brazilian states, providing real-time insight to boost operational efficiency and facilitate the modernisation of its sanitation network.


Having secured top-notch ESG rankings from Sustainalytics, Aegea is putting its money where its mouth is, setting ambitious targets for 2030 around energy consumption, corporate governance, and leadership diversity. It inked a ground-breaking agreement with Brazilian energy giant Petrobras to reduce abstraction volumes by reusing 79,000m3/d of treated wastewater in refineries, and closed the loop further by joining BNDES’s ecological restoration programme, ‘Floresta Viva’. Aegea is single-handedly redefining the Latin American water paradigm for the 21st century.


Almar Water Solutions

What is it?

The Spanish subsidiary of Abdul Latif Jameel Energy, dedicated to developing and managing water infrastructure for industrial and municipal clients.

What has it done?

From a standing start, Almar has emerged as the most serious new competitor in the global water market. The inauguration of the 450,000m3/d Shuqaiq 3 desalination plant in Saudi Arabia last year gave it an impressive reference to leverage for future IWP contracts, while a push into Chile and Egypt underscores its global ambitions to have a service platform on each continent.

What makes it special?

The inauguration of the landmark 450,000m3/d Shuqaiq 3 desalination plant in Saudi Arabia last year was rapidly followed by the signing of a greenfield contract with Saudi Aramco to develop a 185,000m3/d industrial water treatment plant. Almar’s momentum as a strategic forward thinker in the Middle Eastern water market has also put it in an enviable position to take advantage of Egypt’s large-scale desalination build-out, thanks to its stake in local desal operator Ridgewood.

Having first dipped its toe into the Latin American water market in 2019, Almar last year reinforced its commitment to delivering high-quality water services in Chile by taking a stake in concessionaire Aguas San Pedro, which has since expanded its own footprint by buying Aguas de Colina.


Almar’s 2022 investment in digital transformation specialist Datakorum shows that it is fundamentally committed to improving the way the world of water works. A new contract to provide smart communication services for water and energy infrastructure in Abu Dhabi hinges on a connectivity-as-a-service (CaaS) model to maximise the interaction between end-users and advanced metering infrastructure. With tools like this at its disposal, Almar’s development team – fronted by the fearless Carlos Cosín – is recalibrating what it means to be an international full-service water company.



What is it?

A Spanish water operator, contractor, project developer and technology company with a global reach spanning Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Latin America.

What has it done?

It increased the number of people it served by 10 million in 2022, showing a dynamism and creativity that none of its competitors were able to match.

What makes it special?

Aqualia offers something different that its customers clearly love. In 2022 it renewed nearly 100% of its domestic concessions, while winning new contracts both at home and in France – the most competitive water market in the world.

Aqualia innovates in every direction: technological, financial, environmental, and social. It has long been the European Union’s biggest partner in water research; in 2022 it secured a ground-breaking €1.1 billion green corporate loan; it delivered impressive emissions reductions through its sustainability plan; and it developed new pricing structures to guarantee access to water and sanitation for all.


In 2022, the world could not get enough of Aqualia. Its ability to deploy capital at scale, its action-oriented devotion to sustainability, its cutting-edge expertise across the entire water cycle, and its willingness to listen proved irresistible to customers and partners across the world. Together, they helped Aqualia seize some of the most sought-after opportunities in the global water market, including the north and south cluster contracts in Saudi Arabia, and the purchase of utility interests in Georgia and Colombia.



What is it?

A giant French company which has placed itself at the front line of the ecological transition.

What has it done?

In 2022 it united 250,000 people who were once bitter competitors behind a single cause: creating a more sustainable future for the world. Thanks to the personal engagement of every one of them, the company was able to deliver 14.1% organic revenue growth over the year, while exceeding its social and environmental goals.

What makes it special?

No one at Veolia took their eye off the ball in 2022. The company delivered some great contract wins which show the true breadth and versatility of its expertise. Veolia secured deals for a water reclamation plant serving a Samsung semiconductor fab in Texas; an energy-from-waste plant for a dairy in Turkey; a brine management complex for Neom in Saudi Arabia; and a biorefinery in Montpellier that produces twice as much energy as it consumes.

Veolia isn’t a normal company any more. It is a group of talented people who are driven by a passion for what they do: decarbonising, depolluting, and regenerating. Employee commitment grew from 84% before the merger to 89% afterwards, according to an independent survey. Furthermore, employee share ownership has increased from 1.8% to 6.5%. And customers are noticing: Veolia’s net promoter score rose from 41 to 44 over the period of the merger.


Before the merger, Veolia chairman Antoine Frérot said: “A business is prosperous because it is useful, and not the other way around”. This very simple concept of being useful to the world as we confront the realities of climate change, water scarcity, and environmental degradation remains at the heart of what it means to be Veolia. And it is essential to our future.


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