CORDIS - EU research results

Water – Electricity – Telecommunication Package

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - WETPaC (Water – Electricity – Telecommunication Package)

Reporting period: 2015-05-01 to 2015-12-31

“Water-Electricity-Telecommunication Package -WETPaC” is a project concerning the development and commercialization of an innovative and intelligent system for the provision of three basic and vital services for human life – Water, Electricity and Telecommunication – in a single unified package. Renewable Energy Sources are the main source of energy for WETPaC.
The objective of this work has been the implementation of a feasibility study and an initial business plan for the successful commercialization of WETPaC.
With the implementation of the feasibility study EUDITI Ltd investigated the workability and profitability of the proposed product. For this reason the feasibility study focused on the survey of the existing situation in target countries, investigation of the market environment (barriers and opportunities), business management and business models. The market assessment is focused on strategies that should be followed, initially at the two major target countries (Greece, Philippines) and secondly at other MENA and African countries, in order to penetrate the market, promote growth and profitably keep the product in the market.
During the period of the project we performed the following work:
Implementation of a detailed market assessment for two main target countries, Greece and Philippines. The assessment focused on the study of the current situation regarding water, electricity and telecom, legislation and policy issues on RES and water, socio-economic issues, alternative offered solutions and their cost. A market assessment is also performed for the MENA region and African countries. Based on the study there is a high market potential of WETPaC in Greece, Philippines and MENA region. Africa is a promising market but risky to consider it in our initial targets.
An overview and a market analysis on off grid RES and water treatment technologies and their matching are performed. The combination of Photovoltaics with Reverse Osmosis desalination process, as has been selected for WETPaC, is the most efficient, reliable and economical attractive combination.
A detailed search was performed for similar products available in the market and for potential competitors. A list of commercial RES water treatment products and their technical data was selected and reviewed. Regarding the competitors, few companies have been building on the idea of utilizing renewables for water production but nothing similar to WETPaC has been commercialized.
A list of around 90 funding and humanitarian organizations/associations with details on their activities and contact data was implemented. Our aim is, after the development of WETPaC prototypes and relevant marketing material, to inform the organizations about the WETPaC product and to aware them for the importance of its services.
Development of a leaflet and of a website for the statement of the WETPaC idea within the SME Phase 1 Instrument Programme.
The technical design of three basic WETPaC models was performed. The design was based on our assessment regarding the water and electricity requirements in the target countries and to basic concerns, such as the need of low energy and low operation and maintenance requirements, remote control and monitoring, smart payment system, to provide financing and affordable solutions to low income populations. We searched the market for lower cost equipment that meets our technical specifications. We were able to achieve lower costs (almost 15%) than what we had initially expected. This equipment should be tried in a working demo.
Implementation of important contacts. We visited stakeholders (Government, Financial Institutions, Utilities, Associations, NGOs, etc.) in Greece and in Philippines and obtained an insight on possible barriers to WETPaC entry in the market. We identified market entry opportunities however, a demo is needed. Also, we visited potential customers in Greece Philippines and United Arab Emirates. The lack of a product sample was a significant disadvantage in our prospects and further collaborations.
Study of business models. We checked business models appropriate for our product. Also, a marketing strategy and priority marketing actions to sell WETPaC are performed. Our sales strategy was based on our customer knowledge, knowledge of WETPaC competitors and their offered services and on the basic features of WETPaC product which make it unique and a sustainable and profitable option for its prospective customers.
Implementation of an initial business plan for WETPaC product. A SWOT analysis was implemented to analyze the business situation for our new product. As concluded, the opportunities to have a profitable product are beyond the weaknesses and the barriers.
Implementation of a financial analysis. The analysis mainly includes an initial estimation of the expenses required to complete product development, built and test three prototypes, develop marketing material, etc. An estimation of the expenses to run the WETPaC activity for the first five years as well as a cumulative cash flow was also performed. Based on the financial analyses it seems that an investment in WETPaC development could pay back in five years.
finance the provision of these services in most developing countries.
Success of our product will have a major socioeconomic impact around the world.
Our objective is to create a commercially successful product. It need to be reliable, of low cost and easy to finance. We aim to combine any suitable new or old technology to achieve this.
WETPaC is a product that integrates PV, storage, diesel and low specific energy RO. The system should be highly optimized so as make it profitable for the user. However, there are also several technical and financial risks associated to the product that we have tried to alleviate and that is what we consider progress beyond the state of the art.
Technical risks: WETPaC comprises several components which may seem complicated to operate and maintain (especially for a non-highly technical user). WETPaC will be equipped with the facility of remote monitoring so there will be a continuous support to the user. Removing this risk makes it easier to finance.
Business Risks: There are many factors that could restrict product success, such as secure customers, government support, etc. WETPaC has been optimized to serve a telecom load plus a desalination unit. As such the user can have as major customer a GSM operator. The risk is lower when a good customer does exist. Provision of safe water is supported by many government and international agencies. WETPaC investment risks are lower if there is such financial support.
Financial Risk: Collection of payments has always been an issue. WETPaC minimizes this with smart payment collection system.