is an active market
place. Bringing together supply and demand for water related
business, activities or operations.
Science, research, development, consultancy services,
engineering, contracting, supply of equipment, components or
technology, design-build-operate, financing, project management,
Anything, as long as it is water related and
can be supplied from the Netherlands or achieved together with a
Dutch business partner.
You can take advantage of
market knowledge and
network by using the
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Water-treatment technologies are
hot but seem to be a promising opportunity that is more elusive
The world market for water-related business is roughly
estimated at $400 billion. It is possible to get big returns,
but forget quick returns from investments in projects. Besides of longer return times, the
biggest water treatment opportunities are in developing
countries, which have the least money to buy innovative
technologies and which are more interested in delivering clean
water to their people than helping people handle their finances,
buildings insurance and the other complications that first
world countries focus on. The juiciest water projects are municipal
water-treatment plants owned by governments that do not have
budgets large enough to accommodate new technologies. However,
the outlook is alarming, as demand for water rapidly
outstrips dwindling supplies because the world population is
fast growing, the climate is changing, and today's water
infrastructure is aging. The United Nations has identified
300 water-conflict zones around the world and even more will be
designated as water stress areas. Water is not synonym
with fast money, but worthwhile to invest in, providing
safe and reasonable returns. Some water funds bring
a growth of 20% per year and say "Water is a mass market which
will grow rapidly in the coming years. We cannot expect to see a
decline in de demand."
Click here to read:
- collected water papers 'Water, blue Gold' by ABN-AMRO (2006).
water study 'Precious Blue', January 2006.
Robeco/SAM water study Water: a market of the future, December
An overview of worldwide active
water funds from the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg:
- Luxemburg based Pictet Water Funds,
- the Dutch ASN Milieu & Water
- the Dutch SNS REAAL Waterfonds,
- Dutch Rabobank/Robeco Clean Tech
Private Equity II.
- Dutch Robeco SAM Sustainable Water Fund
- the Belgian KBC Eco Water Fund.
- AXXESSOR Strategic Water Fund (Luxembourg)
Pictet Water Funds (Luxembourg)
The fund's objective is to invest worldwide in shares of
companies focused on the water related sector. The Water Fund
aims to invest in equities issued by companies operating in the
water and air sector worldwide.
The companies targeted in the water sector will include water
companies, water conditioning and desalination companies, water
suppliers, water bottling, transport and dispatching companies,
specializing in the treatment of waste water, sewage and solid,
chemical waste, companies operating sewage treatment plants and
companies providing equipment, consulting and engineering
connection with the above-described activities.
The Water Fund invests two-thirds of its net assets
issued by companies operating in the water sector: water supply
(39%), water technology (34%), bottled water (9%), environmental
ASN Environment & Water Fund
Sustainability is a key issue in all activities of the Dutch
ASN Bank. ASN research resulted in several funds targeting this
mission, amongst which the ASN Environment & Water Fund
The ASN Environment & Water Fund invests in a limited number of
sectors. This increases the risk of strong market price
fluctuations together with the change of returns on long term.
The fund invests in the following sectors (% at the end of Q2
Water treatment (43%).
Durable energy (34%).
Recycling (23%). With focus on reuse of industrial waste, energy
and raw materials such as paper, metals and glass.
ASN Environmental & Water fund invests especially in small
(56,7%) and medium-sized companies (40,8%). Check www.ASNBank.nl
SNS REAAL Waterfonds (The Netherlands)
SNS REAAL Group has taken the initiative for a Fund that
targets investment projects dedicated to sustainability,
entrepreneurship and innovation in the field of water control
and water management. Within the next 5 years, SNS REAAL Group
will invest US$ 50 million in international water projects in
Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe, targeting drinking water
supply, sanitation, water purification and irrigation.
Robeco Clean Tech Private Equity II (The Netherlands)
The investment fund Robeco Clean Tech Private Equity II aims
at 500 million euros and is, besides solar energy and new
materials, focused on innovative technologies for water
treatment. Rabobank and Robeco expect that the market for
water treatment and -supply will grow strongly en will bring
good returns for the investors.
Robeco SAM Sustainable Water Fund (The
The depletion of water supplies and natural resources, and the
necessity to make more efficient use of these resources, is
attracting more and more attention. Robeco responded to this
development at an early stage and considerably increased its
sustainable-investment activities in 2006. An important
milestone was the acquisition of a 64% stake in the Swiss
company Sustainable Asset Management, one of the most prominent
asset managers in the world in the field of sustainable
investing. SAM Group enjoys international recognition for its
water and energy funds and for constructing the Dow Jones
Sustainability Indexes, a joint initiative with Dow Jones. SAM
Group possesses a unique research department which identifies
companies worldwide that are both financially sound and also
fulfill certain sustainability criteria. SAM Group invests in
companies having a water activity share in the turnover of at
least 20% only. The fund invests worldwide in companies
providing technology, products and services relating to the
water value chain, such as water distribution, management,
treatment and analysis as well as irrigation.
The aim of the fund is to achieve the highest possible returns
over the long term. It is suitable for long-term-oriented equity
investors who are convinced of the sustainable potential of the
water market, and for inclusion in a globally diversified
portfolio. August 2007 SAM reported to stick to long-term
strategy to underweight utilities and overweight suppliers of
technology and services to the value chain of water.
Water companies benefits from the long-term trends and
challenges such as water shortages, water quality issues, ageing
infrastructure and climate change.
SAM has defined four investment areas characterized by
substantial growth potential:
1. Distribution and management (41%)
Water and wastewater utilities can contribute to sustainability
by minimizing water losses from pipes or ensuring safe and
reliable drainage and sewerage systems in residential areas.
This cluster also includes companies concerned with building and
maintaining the water mains and sewer infrastructure and with
the management of water resources.
2.Advanced water treatment (23%)
This cluster includes companies that play a key role in the
treatment of wastewater, the purification of drinking water and
the desalination of sea water. Every year the world spends more
than USD 10 billion on water treatment, and in the next 20 years
this business is expected to grow tenfold. Only a fraction of
the world’s wastewater is currently treated. Investing
in companies active in this field can therefore generate huge
benefits for the environment and users of water in the future.
3. Demand-side efficiency (16%)
This cluster includes companies offering products for water
metering, gray water recycling and boosting the efficiency of
water use. This business boasts annual growth rates of up to 20%
and makes an important contribution to sustainability. Using
water recycling systems it is also possible to close local water
cycle systems and reuse water.
4. Water and food (20%)
This cluster covers companies offering means of food production,
that are very efficient in their
water consumption. The food industry is worth USD 2,700 billion a
year, and what used to be minor segments such as organic foods
and bottled water are now seeing 20%
Global equity markets were unsettled during November 2008. The
prospect of intervention by national governments to shore up
their economies had no effect. The SAM Sustainable Water Fund
fell by -5.3%, thus standing its ground better than the
benchmark, which fell by -6.6%. The weak showing by individual
European industrial shares was a drag on performance during the
reporting month. With broader diversification, the proportion of
water supply companies within the portfolio was increased. On
the other hand, SAM took advantage of extremely depressed share
prices in some cases to top up holdings selectively
Over 2007 the fund advanced 5.1%, beating the benchmark MSCI
World by 6.7%. At the start of January 2008, the leading
credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s gave the SAM Sustainable
Water Fund an "A" rating, the first and only 'pure' water fund
to receive this accolade.
read a handout of a presentation of the Robeco SAM Sustainable
Water Fund (in Dutch). Check
KBC Eco Water Fund (Belgium)
Sustainability is a important issue in the activities of the
Belgian KBC Bank. KBC research resulted in several Eco Funds
funds targeting this mission, amongst which the KBC Eco Water
AXXESSOR Strategic Water Fund (Luxembourg)
The portfolio comprises of utility companies for industry,
agriculture and private households as well as companies which
provide technology for water treatment. Food stocks, such as
Nestle and Danone are excluded. Stock selection is based upon
the size of the company’s turnover within the water sector,
irrespective of the size of the company itself.
The allocation between the sectors a) Suppliers and b)
Technology differs from other indices and is weighted 75% to
Barclays offers iShares S&P Global Water (IH2O). This
fund gives you a broad based exposure to shares of the world's
largest water companies, including water utilities and water
equipment stocks. Check
Palisades Water Index (ZWI)
The Palisades Water Index (ZWI) is a modified equal-dollar
weighted stock market index. It is designed to track the
performance of companies engaged in the global water industry
such as pump and filter manufacturers, water utilities, and
irrigation equipment manufacturers. The index was set at 1000 as
of December 31, 2003. Check
Not very well known, but there is even a
Dow Jones TMI (Total
Market Index) Water Index. All
together some 200 different companies constitute the holdings of
these water funds and index.
is an investor and industry news portal for the water sector.
The website does not make recommendations, but offers news,
exclusive articles and columnists, audio interviews, investor
conferences, blogs, and a list of stocks in the sector. Check