Read all about the experience of the bNovate team in Toronto at the Annual Exhibition of the American Water Works Association (AWWA).
bNovate at ACE23
At bNovate, we are familiar with European fairs and exhibitions. We entered the international scene last year for the first time when we participated in Asia Waters in Malaysia. In June this year, we reached North America to attend the American Water Works Association (AWWA) Annual Conference and Exhibition, ACE23. Water professionals from all over the world came together for four days to discuss the future of water. Renowned speakers, innovative exhibitors and avid visitors networked, participated in competitions and envisioned solutions for issues faced by the water industry.
A bit more about AWWA
This international, nonprofit, scientific and educational society was founded in 1881. It is the world's largest organisation of water supply professionals, grouping 4,300 utilities and counting 51,000 members in total.
AWWA brings together public water and wastewater systems, environmental advocates, scientists, academicians and others who are genuinely interested in water to provide solutions for better water management.
bNovate had a booth on Isle Utilities Innovation Hub! Our team consisted of François Requin, Sara Ferdi and Jannick Göller. Their mission was to showcase BactoSense to water industry experts and international attendees and to provide valuable insights into our microbial monitoring solutions. They had the instrument on site and could make measurements right there, demonstrating the simplicity of BactoSense.
By interacting with the visitors, our three Musketeers discovered how our products could address various challenges and planted the seeds for many new collaborations. ACE23 also provided its fair share of entertainment. One of the highlights was the "No Water, no Hockey" game, which brought together individuals passionate about sports and water conservation.
Sara and Jannick participated in the "WE RACE for Water" fund run, an event highlighting the importance of protecting our planet's most precious resource and benefiting the Community Engineering Corps to assist underserved communities in the USA with safe water. Eddy, the bright-eyed water drop mascot, was a total hit with the team as it brought a playfulness to the event.
The team's impressions of the conference and surroundings
Sara, for whom it was her first visit to Toronto, enjoyed the city, its historic buildings, Lake Ontario and having lunch at the top of the CN Tower. When it came to the conference, she was impressed by the size of the event. There were many exhibitors, visitors and activities, such as the hockey game. These all made for a fun experience and an atmosphere well-suited for networking. Sara came back with a new understanding of how water treatment is carried out in North America and the effects of strong chlorination on bacterial populations and networks.
Jannick was thrilled to meet so many water experts and see how innovation-driven they were. For him, it was also interesting to learn more about issues around chlorination, like how disinfection by-products (DBPs) form when chlorine reacts with natural organic matter. Jannick believes that with BactoSense, one can better control chlorination and therefore reduce DBPs and the associated potential health risks.
François was impressed by important players in the water sector, like Xylem, and their massive booths. He found the programme varied and interesting and enjoyed the high quality of the presentations. He also appreciated the playful atmosphere and, notably, the plumbing competitions. He thought the organisers were very involved and present during the event, making for an even greater exhibition. François is now looking forward to meeting with the European representatives of AWWA and developing new partnerships.
What will the future hold?
Looking ahead, we are eagerly anticipating our market entry into North America. The positive feedback and interest we received at AWWA's ACE 23 have only reinforced our commitment to making a lasting impact in this region. Our technology has tremendous potential to revolutionise the industry, and we are excited to explore new opportunities and partnerships in North America.