Article originally posted on World Bank Water Blog As the global population hurtles towards 9.7 billion people by 2050, it has never been more important to produce more with less. As the water supply and sanitation (WSS) sector continues to face increasing pressures, especially due to the impacts of climate change, governments in the developing […]
Water technology startups prepare to apply to Imagine H2O’s global programs￼
Applications open for the organization’s zero-equity accelerator and pilot funding programs
With countless wildfires in the west and hurricanes in the east, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to remain hopeful about the climate crisis. Imagine H2O, a non-profit water accelerator, is working with startups to change the narrative.
Imagine H2O believes that innovation and entrepreneurship can solve the global water problems. Their zero-equity programs equip startups with resources to develop and deploy their solutions around the world. Drawing from a 12-year track record, 166 startups from 20 countries, $1.4million awarded in pilot funding, 81 tech adopters, and 150 industry experts, they are the leading water accelerator for early and later stage startups.
Beginning today, they are accepting startups for two of their programs, the Imagine H2O Accelerator and the Urban Water Challenge. Applications will be accepted through September 21, 2022.
The Imagine H2O Accelerator offers early-stage startups mentorship and support to develop their technology, access industry experts, showcase their solutions, and expand into new markets. The startups that have gone through the program have a 90% survival rate, and six have been acquired by large, industrial players.
“We understand the unique challenges and opportunities of being a water entrepreneur and offer tailored resources to power new ideas designed for our sector,” said Leigh Madeira, Vice President of the Imagine H2O Accelerator. “When we use our expertise and global ecosystem to help launch new technologies, we’re also giving customers a direct pathway to sustainable businesses, communities, and ecosystems.”
The Urban Water Challenge is a global competition that provides up to $100k in grant funding to each startup. The program enables entrepreneurs to pilot their technology and accelerate their progress towards transforming the future of water in coastal cities.
“Imagine H2O started the Urban Water Challenge to provide validation and open up new opportunities for adoption, scaling, and follow-on funding to startups,” said Kelly Trott, Vice President of Deployment and Impact. “In the past five years, the Challenge, in partnership with 11th Hour Racing and Oceankind, has awarded $1.1 million in non-dilutive grant funding to 22 companies. In turn, with climate change continually threatening water resources of global cities, the Challenge provides communities with a steady flow of tested solutions that make them more efficient, equitable, healthy, and resilient.”
The startups supported by Imagine H2O operate in sectors including food and beverage, mining, manufacturing, and infrastructure. Working alongside Imagine H2O, companies are increasing efficiency, tackling climate change, expanding equity, and improving health, all while positively impacting 1.1 billion people.