National competition launched to advance water entrepreneurship

Winners get cash prizes, mentorship, funding for tuition/training expenses and offices for one year!   


A national competition is now underway to reward new ideas and approaches for advancing sustainability and resiliency efforts in the water industry.  Sponsored by Veolia, The Water Council and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, the new program is called “Pow!  emPowering Opportunities in Water.” 

Your company can win cash prizes, mentoring, funding for tuition/training expenses, and offices for one year!   

The program offers a special opportunity for innovators and social entrepreneurs to fast-track their water-related ideas while connecting them to Veolia experts and water industry influencers who can directly support their company’s services, products or ideas.  



Award submissions must fall within one of the following categories:

  • Smart Data Technologies including information and communications technology (ICT) enablers that drive performance and sustainability in cities and industries including data-driven decision-making and data analytics solutions, asset management optimization, low-cost data acquisition products, intelligent industrial automation and disruptive ICT solutions.   
  • Resilience and sustainable water management including solutions that can enhance climate resilience of water infrastructure and look at climate change opportunities to provide higher level of services.
  • Watershed management including solutions to assess and improve watershed management, ranging from reducing non-point source pollution to restoring aquatic systems.
  • Disruptive water innovation that can trigger substantive changes in the way we manage aspects of our water resources and water systems.
Global Water Center
Do you have a water-related innovation that can help advance sustainability and resiliency efforts? Apply today!

Up to three winners will receive numerous prizes and support:  

  • $25,000 prize from Veolia
  • $15,000 cash prize from The Water Council and Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation
  • $10,000 tuition to The BREW (Business. Research. Entrepreneurship. In Wisconsin.), The Water Council’s Water Business Accelerator that includes water technology experts and mentors, plus direct access to BREW Preferred Partners, including WIPFLI, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP, University of Wisconsin-Madison Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic, and Global Water Center Executive in Residence​
  • Business model and operations training through The Water Council
  • Access to faculty from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee School for Freshwater Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, and Marquette University
  • Access to the Global Water Center’s Flow Lab
  • Exchanges and mentoring with Veolia decision-makers, along with exposure to actual challenges
  • Leverage Veolia’s network in order to deploy their solutions in other geographies
  • 12 months of free office space in Veolia’s suite at the Global Water Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the heart of the most densely populated water technology cluster in the world.

Who is eligible?  

U.S. entrepreneurs, innovators and companies must have a water-related innovation that can serve as the basis for a viable new business. Entrepreneurs must be full-time on their venture and confident they can present, at a minimum, a proof of concept by the end of the 12-month period including validating commercialization requirements and attracting technology licensing and/or potential investment.  

Participants must commit to relocate key staff to the Global Water Center in Milwaukee during the program’s duration. Official rules are available at

How to enter the competition?

For official rules and to learn more about the 2015 "Pow! emPowering Opportunities in Water!" Program, visit  Entrants must submit an online entry form beginning on September 15 through November 15, 2015. There is no fee to enter the competition.  A Judging Panel selects up to three startups, which have the highest likelihood of solving the challenge to enter the year-long program. Winners will be announced in December 2015 and the program begins in January 2016. 


Up to three winners will receive numerous prizes and support. 

For complete rules and to apply, visit For inquiries, please send an email to
Deadline: November 15, 2015