Global Water Intelligence Magazine

Jul 17 cover

Vol 18, Issue 7 (July 2017)

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In Global Water Intelligence this month

Need to know

Going Public
  • Evoqua has filed for an initial public offering of its shares, which will return the company to the stock exchange as a stand-alone entity for the first time since 1999, when the old USFilter was bought out by Veolia (then Vivendi). It is a totally different animal these days, having received a new lease of life under...
  • Having lost out to SNCLavalin in the £2 billion race to acquire UK design engineer WS Atkins, CH2M Hill is rumoured to have been courted by Jacobs Engineering ahead of a possible takeover at an implied EBITDA multiple in the high single digits...
  • If oilfield water services company Select Energy Services has been a bit quiet since floating on Nasdaq back in April, the reason surely became clear earlier this month, when it announced...
Anarchy in the UK
  • More than £2 billion has been wiped off the value of the remaining three listed UK water companies in the last month, as fears grew over a regulatory clamp-down by Ofwat at...
  • A fundamental feature of the regulator’s approach at the next price review will be to keep bills low by driving efficiency in procurement, which raises the interesting prospect of...
  • The remaining large-scale water supply projects expected to appear on Thames Water’s final fine screening list next month are perfect candidates for...
  • Perhaps the strangest revelation of all was the sudden resignation of Ofwat chief executive Cathryn Ross just days after the regulator announced its PR19 methodology. Although she is not...
'Opping Mad?
  • Twenty years ago, Thames Water, Kelda, Anglian Water, and Severn Trent all had significant portfolios of non-regulated operating contracts in the US water market. One by one, they have realised...
  • Selling a business with $200 million of revenues for $62 million is never easy, particularly when a regulated water business with a similar revenue base (Aquarion Water) has just been sold for $...
  • Not everyone is down about the prospects for the outsourced operations market in North America. Utility Partners, the contract ops business that Canadian systems integrator H2O Innovation bought last year, has co-opted two new members – including...
Eastern Promise
  • Egypt’s seawater desalination market has burst into life with a number of major deals making the past year the most prolific in the country’s history. The involvement of...
  • Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia has turned its eyes from desalination to wastewater in its latest bid to foster private investment in infrastructure. The appointment of advisors for the 500,000m3/d Jeddah Airport wastewater project marks a concrete step towards...
  • Oman is looking to take on advisors to help push through a planned restructuring of its water sector that it hopes will revitalise the system and make it more suitable for private sector
Empire Builders
  • Moya Holdings Asia has catapulted itself to the top of the leaderboard of Indonesian water project developers by buying private equity-backed concessionaire Acuatico. The move provides...
  • Japanese information technology giant Hitachi, Ltd. has set itself ambitious near-term growth targets in the water sector. The group’s water division already brings in annual revenues of $...
  • Olivia Lum’s Hyflux was notably absent from the list of bidders for Singapore’s latest desalination plant, largely because of PUB’s stipulation that businesses already had to have...
  • Project developer RWL Water and MABR specialist Emefcy got a shock just days before they completed their merger to form ASX-listed water pure-play Fluence Corporation. On 11 July, Siemens and AES announced...
Enabling Enablers
  • Advocates for the removal of a volume cap on the issuance of tax-exempt private activity bonds for water projects in the US are confident that a new bill introduced this month will overcome more than a decade of political lethargy. The cap has long been seen as...
  • A bill introduced this month in Pennsylvania could provide a replicable blueprint for low-cost strategies to reduce stormwater pollution. The state would set aside $50 million a year to...

Project Tracker

Project Tracker

Charting the progress of over 900 Desal, Reuse and PPP water projects in the international water industry.

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Latest Tracker Updates

Project Tracker Database
(Subscription Requried)
Hassyan SWRO... United Arab Emirates 21 Sep 18 The client has... Desal
Canoas WWTP Colombia 21 Sep 18 Proposals for ... Reuse
Lake Station... United States 20 Sep 18 The Indiana Ut... Utility
Sun Country ... United States 20 Sep 18 The bid submis... Utility
East Brandyw... United States 20 Sep 18 Sealed bids ar... Utility

What's making the news in global water projects this month

Project tracker

UK utilities eye off-balance sheet projects; Japan embraces water concessions; Mauritius PPP back on the cards; Lima changes tack; Reuse feasibility studies pick up pace; India tests out hybrid annuity model; Atlantic City takes a gamble; all the latest project news from around the world.


GWI Water Index

UK fears drag water index down

Spooked by the prospect of a regulatory clamp-down in 2019, investors wiped billions off the value of listed UK water utilities last month. Was the move overdone?

Water on the markets this month:

GWI IndexValueChangeDate
Global Water154.911.95%10 Aug
Asian Water98.010.41%10 Aug
EMEA Water91.372.17%10 Aug
Americas Water253.642.56%10 Aug

The List

Water’s longest-serving chief executives

Who are the longest lived CEOs in the water business?


Christopher gasson Making water more circular

Christopher Gasson feels we need to be more specific in our pursuit of value from waste.

Chart of the month

Chart of the Month: Water Capex in the Refining and Petrochemicals industry by region

This month’s chart shows a regional forecast of capital expenditure on water and wastewater infrastructure in the refining and petrochemicals industry. It forms part of GWI’s newly published Global Water Markets 2018 insight report, and shows how the industry is evolving around an imbalance of supply and demand induced by uncertain oil prices and...

Gwi jul17 chart of the month


Water Leaders

Leading water’s fightback against climate change in Southern California

While the state-wide drought in California eased last year, the picture in the south is as tough as ever. With wildfires raging and utilities under pressure, Metropolitan Water District boss Jeff Kightlinger tells GWI’s Samantha Yates how the region plans to build its way out of drought.

Being the best in the world is not our job

Singapore PUB’s chief executive Peter Ng has another goal in mind: being the best for Singapore. It means pursuing impossible performance targets, pushing the boundaries of technology, and still worrying about how to win the trust of customers.




Chief Technology Officer

User Perspectives

Puma takes the lead with supply chain sustainability strategy

The ubiquitous German sportswear brand is at the forefront of the changes being brought about in the textiles industry. GWI probes its relationship with a vast supply chain and its plans to coordinate a major evolution in water and wastewater treatment techniques.

Smart Water Watch

Innovyze touts asset management as the next big thing

The hydraulic modelling specialist is taking on the biggest trends in the digital water industry. What opportunities does it see away from its traditional areas of expertise?

CTO Outlook

A dual approach to innovating in water

Hitachi’s water business unit is trying to make a splash in desalination and the digital sector. GWI talks to its technology advisor Koichi Tsuzuki about the company’s two-pronged strategy of innovative treatment techniques and harnessing the Internet of Things.

See the latest technology updates on the Chief Technology Officer Homepage...


Utility Partners guns for O&M growth after successful integration into H2O Innovation

Despite a faultless contract retention record over the past year, H2O Innovation’s operating arm will have to get acquisitive if it wants to beat the industry’s modest single-digit organic growth rate. CEO Frédéric Dugré sets out his vision for the business.

Severn Trent turns its back on the US contract ops market

After 25 years in the business, the UK regulated water company has had enough of the meagre returns on offer in the US O&M market. How will the new owners fare?

Utilities, Inc. returns to net growth after streamlining

The private equity-backed water utility has pruned its holdings and simplified its structure to deliver greater value to its 400,000 customers. What makes it different to its peers??

CA pilots centralised water trading

Removing the volume cap on tax-exempt private activity bonds for water projects in the US would serve the President’s public-private infrastructure ambitions. The newly proposed enabling legislation is unlikely to make it through under its own steam.

Will Trump’s tax reforms finally unshackle private activity bonds for water?

Removing the volume cap on tax-exempt private activity bonds for water projects in the US would serve the President’s public-private infrastructure ambitions. The newly proposed enabling legislation is unlikely to make it through under its own steam.

Pennsylvania looks to foster nutrient credit trading by bringing in private finance

A commitment by the state to purchase nutrient reduction credits could catalyse privately financed infrastructure to meet Pennsylvania’s costly pollution reduction mandate in the Chesapeake Bay. How replicable is the model?

Americas water in brief

Evoqua has filed a confidential registration statement with the SEC ahead of a widely anticipated IPO. The filing came just days after Evoqua announced its latest acquisition, buying industrial wastewater specialists ADI SystemsLange Containment and Geomembrane Technologies.

Debra coy Where is the Internet of Water?

Blind data is not enough – but a centralised hub for information could drive digital innovation in the US water sector, says Debra Coy.

Asia pacific

Indonesian magnate Salim builds regional water player

Singapore-listed minnow Moya has swallowed Acuatico, a rival developer with nearly ten times its revenue. The deal was made possible by the backing of tycoon Anthoni Salim, whose interests extend to Filipino concessionaire Maynilad. What will come next?

Hitachi looks to double overseas water sales through desal innovation and M&A

IT specialist Hitachi, Ltd. has a vast water business at home in Japan. Translating that expertise into overseas revenue has been slow going. GWI talked to water business guru Kunizo Sakai about the company’s latest plans for global expansion.

Willy yeo Getting it right on Jurong

Willy Yeo finds that no firm is an island as he digests the bid results for Singapore’s latest desalination project.


Thames weighs up its infrastructure options for the next 80 years

A series of large-scale desalination and reuse plants are set to make it through Thames Water’s fine screening process as viable options for future implementation. It raises the prospect of the UK’s first major desalination plant to be procured off-balance sheet.

Italmatch furthers its niche philosophy by entering high-value metals recovery

The purchase of a line of resins with the ability to sequester precious metals for subsequent recovery is part of a new phase of development for the Italian specialty chemicals firm. Where are the synergies?.

David lloyd owen Dammed if we do...

Infrastructure is not always the answer to water scarcity, argues David Lloyd Owen.

Ofwat fires a warning shot as price review gets underway

The publication of the methodology for the UK water sector’s next price review shows the regulator’s determination to drive value in the sector. It will sort the men from the boys.

Middle East and Africa

Muscat paves the way for PSP with planned water sector restructuring

Oman’s fragmented water and wastewater utilities are due for an overhaul under a recently approved restructuring plan. With the government looking to take on advisors to push through the process, what will the implications be for the private water sector?

Riyadh prepares for green light on wastewater PPP

A team of advisors has been taken on as the country looks to replicate its desalination privatisation programme in the wastewater sphere.

Middle East water in brief

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KACARE) is looking to start a wide-ranging research programme into the integration of solar and other renewable energy sources with seawater desalination on a large scale, as well as ways to drive efficiency in renewables-driven desalination. KA-CARE is currently looking to take on an international consultant to advise it on the project.

Tom scotney Life after death for Egypt projects?

A wave of project awards is to be welcomed, but structural issues in Egypt have not been solved, argues Tom Scotney.

‘Perfect storm’ sparks life into Egyptian desal market

A combination of demographic, economic and political pressures has brought about a spike in activity for Egypt’s moribund seawater desalination market. Who are the main beneficiaries?

Mauritius gets serious about PSP in water

After 20 years of fits and starts, the government is now soliciting interest from a range of consultants ahead of a 15-year affermage contract to address chronic underinvestment in its failing water infrastructure. The situation is desperate.