Water Technology Incubator Features Seven Start-ups in Second Year

Pipeline H20 will provide support to the companies over the next four months to help them build their water and wastewater technology innovations

Applicants from every continent — sans Antarctica — participated for spots in the water technology “incubator” class sponsored by Pipeline H2O. 

The 2018 class drew 80 applications from six continents and 20 different countries — a bigger pool than last year’s inaugural class.  

“We never anticipated to get that type of exposure and reach,” says Antony Seppi, Pipeline H2O’s program director.

Supported by a coalition of regional cities, utilities, universities and startup organizations throughout the Greater Cincinnati region, Pipeline H2O’s goal is to identify and accelerate companies working on water technologies that address the world’s water challenges. Those challenges include infrastructure improvements, water reuse, wastewater treatment, monitoring and consumer innovations.

Seven companies, including two from overseas, were selected — based on multiple rounds of evaluation — by a committee of water experts assembled by Pipeline H2O, which is managed by The Hamilton Mill in Hamilton, Ohio.

“We can’t wait to begin working with these startups and introducing them to the value-add resources throughout the Greater Cincinnati region,” Seppi says.

The companies will work closely with Pipeline H2O on many aspects required by startups — securing funding, partnerships, entrepreneurial and technical consultants, etc.

“We introduce them to the program and understand their top two to three needs,” says Seppi. “There’s also continued work with the startups once they leave our program. Whatever we can assist them with.”

The startups recognized this year include:

  • Ceraheli of Orono, Maine (ceramic pico filtration products used for high purity filtration)
  • Drop Water of Menlo Park, California (making and distributing sustainable bottled water)
  • Folia Water of Oakland, California (fast moving consumer goods water filters)
  • GeoInteractive of Australia (automating the job of critical sewer inspections)
  • Microbic Technologies of Wise, Virginia (MicroEVAP technology that separates contaminants from water using mechanical evaporation, vapor compression and condensation)
  • Water Warriors of Cincinnati (no-expansion-needed solution for treatment plants fighting the battle of removing nitrogen and phosphorus)
  • Advizzo of London (combining behavioral science and machine learning to transform utility customer engagement)

Seppi says last year’s inaugural class did very well.

“We had six startups that completed the program,” he says. “They’re out there — a majority of them are still going gangbusters with their ideas.”

One specific success story Seppi notes is WaterStep International from Louisville, Kentucky. WaterStep, formerly EDGE Outreach, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide safe, reliable water to improve the health and welfare of communities in developing countries.

Seppi says WaterStep has used its technology while working on hurricane relief efforts in Texas and Puerto Rico.

This year’s Pipeline H2O program will run from February through May. It will culminate with a Demo Day on May 24 in Cincinnati. Visit pipelineh2o.org to learn more about the program.


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