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Cited by ACS《Chemical & Engineering News》
Author: MS Reisch
The water treatment business is anything but a backwater. The growth through acquisition by brand-name firms such as General Electric and Ecolab is well-known. At the same time, media coverage of water shortages is spurring investor interest in all things water. Big chemical companies are calling water purification and water conservation a “megatrend” that will influence their businesses for years to come. Less well-known is the effort by private equity firms to snap up much smaller water service companies. These investors see more prosaic opportunities to consolidate a fragmented institutional and industrial water treatment business. They also see shale gas water treatment, industrial water recycling, and minimization of the energy used to treat water as additional areas in which to expand. Colin Frayne, president of the Macon, Ga.-based consulting firm Aquassurance, estimates the size of the U.S. market for treating water in commercial facilities at about $6 billion annually.