The Fragmented Water Industry is Going the Way of the Typewriter

Community systems in the water utility industry are the most familiar, and most fragmented portion of our overall infrastructure system in the United States. We strongly outnumber other countries, such as the UK and Australia, with over 70,000 water and wastewater utilities nationwide as compared to their 55 and 82, respectively. This fragmentation limits competition, but there is potential for change that creates hope for a more effective system.

Industry players are aware that the water/wastewater utility industry is inefficient. Most importantly, it limits competition which causes higher prices (economics 101). With so many individual companies servicing utilities, it becomes difficult for a company to even enter the market because identifying customers and understanding the procurement needs of 70,000 utilities is almost impossible. The fragmented market also makes it difficult for vendors and contractors to learn about (and respond to) bids and RFPs in a timely fashion.

Technology is ushering in a more efficient future for the water industry. While there are challenges, they can be overcome by relying on a time proven solution that history teaches us. A simple marketplace, or exchange, is something that humankind has used for thousands of years. Such a model would create a more efficient method for connecting vendors with water and wastewater contract opportunities. Examples can be found in such business models as eBay, Uber, the New York Stock Exchange, and even farmer’s markets.

A marketplace is the model of the future for the water/wastewater utility industry. It is a way for buyers and sellers to connect, rather than having to locate each other through cumbersome and fragmented channels. Such a means for connecting would maximize competition, transparency, and make it easier for companies with new technologies to enter the market.

H2bid has developed a digital marketplace/exchange for the water industry, designed to eliminate the challenges of a fragmented market. H2bid’s marketplace includes an e-bidding platform that is user-friendly and connects water utilities with the largest database of vendors, providing maximum competition and maximum exposure to applicable technologies. Also, the e-bidding platform is green (paperless), which means that the entire bidding and contracting process can be done electronically.

An overview of H2bid’s e-biding platform can be found at: https://www.h2bid.com/Bids/eBid

For more information on how your water or wastewater utility can become part of the digital ecosystem of the future, send an email to info@h2bid.com or call (619) 736-0120.

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