A. O. Smith, The Water Council announce BREW Corporate technology challenge winner


7/21/2017
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Milwaukee, Wisc. — A. O. Smith Corporation and The Water Council have selected Nanolytix of Toronto as the 2017 winner of the BREW Corporate: Powered by A. O. Smith challenge.

Nanolytix is a pioneer in artificial intelligence and sensor technologies for water quality detection applications. The unique water quality sensor technology detects the presence of pathogens and other contaminants in real time using handheld devices.

“We’re excited about the prospective opportunities to partner with the Nanolytix team alongside A. O. Smith engineers at the Corporate Technology Center and the Global Water Center,” notes Dr. Robert Heideman, chief technology officer at A. O. Smith Corporation. “The potential for a low cost, water quality sensing technology made Nanolytix a great fit within our global water strategy.”

Nanolytix Chief Executive Officer Harjeet Bajaj says, “We’re excited about the chance to rapidly commercialize our water technologies with the help of A. O. Smith’s comprehensive platform. We see an opportunity to leverage A. O. Smith’s global presence to more effectively access global markets.”

The Business, Research, Entrepreneurship in Wisconsin (BREW) Corporate challenge focused on four areas of interest to A. O. Smith: water purification, water heating, sensors, and innovative technologies. 

All entries were reviewed by a panel of A. O. Smith employees, The Water Council senior staff, and subject matter experts in the area of freshwater science. 

“We felt Nanolytix and their unique sensor technology would be a good investment for both A. O. Smith and The Water Council,” Heideman continued.

The Nanolytix team will receive a minimum investment of $50,000 from A. O. Smith, as well as tuition to participate in The Water Council’s 12-month accelerator program in Milwaukee.  In addition to the investment, the winning entrepreneurs receive: 

  • A suite in the Global Water Center for up to 12 months;
  • Business model and operations training through The Water Council and the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Institute for Water Business;
  • Access to the Global Water Center’s Flow Lab and A. O. Smith product engineering labs;
  • Mentorship from A. O. Smith corporate development and senior engineering staff, as well as direct access to BREW Preferred Partners;
  • Attendance to conferences and pitch sessions with The Water Council; an
  • A one-year membership to The Water Council providing access to an extensive water technology network.

“Adding Nanolytix to the BREW portfolio is a significant win for all of us,” says Dean Amhaus, president and CEO at The Water Council.  “Four years ago there was no established way of finding water startups located around the world. Now we’re able to match A. O. Smith with a unique water startup from Canada and help both companies grow in Wisconsin’s water innovation hub.”

Finalization of the winner, Nanolytix, is pending final contract negotiations.

About BREW Accelerator
Launched in 2013 by The Water Council, the BREW (Business – Research – Entrepreneurship – In Wisconsin) Accelerator unleashes water innovation by funding water technology startups from around the world with commercialization potential. This first-of-its-kind accelerator pairs a unique water-focused startup community with credible resources of Milwaukee’s world water hub to help entrepreneurs accelerate results, inspire action to create further opportunity, and disrupt the status quo.

BREW Corporate Accelerator, an expansion of the BREW, partners with global corporations, including Veolia and A. O. Smith Corporation, looking for new technologies to solve a specific challenge. By combining funding with access to executive-level mentors, corporate R&D, and intensive business training, BREW Corporate accelerates the development of high-caliber startups. Startups compete in a challenge revolving around specific areas of interest identified by each corporation. Those who show the highest likelihood of solving the challenge are selected for the program. For more information, visit www.thewatercouncil.com/brew

About Nanolytix
Nanolytix is a global leader in rapid testing technology in the areas of water and air.  The company launched in 2016 with locations in Toronto and Hamilton, Ont., Canada. For more information, visit www.nanolytix.ca.

About The Water Council
Headquartered in the Global Water Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, next to the world’s largest freshwater system, The Water Council is a non-profit organization that drives economic, technology and talent development to support the global water industry. As the leading U.S. cluster, and one of the most powerful water technology hubs in the world, the organization convenes global water leaders and supports more than 190 members from small and mid-sized businesses and large global corporations to engineers, entrepreneurs, utilities, government agencies, education programs and non-profits, with valuable services, programming and networking opportunities. Established as a 501(c)(3) in 2009, the driving force behind its success is the vibrant spirit of collaboration between public, private and academic sectors with a strong, shared commitment to finding innovative solutions to critical global water challenges. For more information, visit www.thewatercouncil.com.