Clean water entrepreneurs solve Edinburgh’s global dilemma


Name: Brown Dr. Stephanie Terreni.

Age: Thirty-six.

What is your company’s name?

Wave Clean Water CIC.

Where it’s positioned.

From Edinburgh.

What is it making, what services is it offering?

The water management device of The Clean Aqua For All. With low energy consumption, CAFE is our special product for decentralized water treatment. Without the need for power, a lot of maintenance or dependency on chemicals for care, CAFE ensures that good quality water can be supplied. It is a robust and highly reliable plug-and-play appliance.

To whom is it sold?

We have territorial-specific distributors who have approved commercial sales of our product. These commercial sales are to companies in the mining, agricultural and water treatment industries (for drinking water treatment and tertiary wastewater treatment). We are also partnering with other social enterprises including Challenges Worldwide to build a new business model for drinking water treatment and agricultural water treatment for low-income communities.

What is the income from them?

Oh. TBC. This is our first operating year.

How many workforce?

Hey. Four.

When did it become established?

In 2017, in July.

Why did the plunge take you?

Our team shares the perspective of working and living in conditions where, on a regular basis, we have seen the consequence of consuming polluted water – the illness and destruction caused by dirty water consumption. None of us, however, had seen a water treatment system that, in rural or low-income urban contexts, we thought was completely functional and efficient. There is a lot of smart technology out there that purifies water, but in our view, it is also much too costly, energy-intensive, and maintenance-intensive to be successful for rural and small communities to use.

We were sure that we could do better, and felt that not at least attempting to build a system that was as easy and easy to maintain as possible would be criminal, but still did a fantastic job of purifying water! And that’s what we’ve been doing, creating, evaluating, and proving our technology to provide rural or low-income communities with clean water since our official founding in 2017. With low- and middle-income countries in mind, we began designing the CAFE system, but soon realized there was also a domestic demand for CAFE.

With a lot of ambition, effort, and a “try and try again” mentality, we created the technology! Howard and Matthew, our two technical minds, spent a lot of their evenings and weekends sorting out the technical details. In order to make the method as simple and efficient as possible, we all worked together to build various versions and discuss what we wanted to figure out.

Our primary objective was to get the minds that could resolve this task together. We are a group of pioneers, scientists, philanthropists, economists and storytellers who are willing to question the world’s way of providing clean water. Together, we have the science, technological and commercial expertise and the vital participation of the community to fulfill the Clean Water Wave’s goal and make it a reality.

A big breakthrough, for example, was our relationship with Dryden Aqua and Howard Dryden’s involvement. Thanks to AFM activated filter media supplied by Dryden Aqua, our technology works. AFM is an activated medium based on Howard’s PhD research and developed in Scotland and Switzerland by Dryden Aqua by upcycling 50 percent of all colored glass bottles.

We are a social enterprise with a distinctive business model in which all proceeds from the selling of CAFE to commercial partners are reinvested in financing CAFE services for communities in need.

What were you doing before you hit the plunge?

I was a management consultant and, before that, an academic working in East Africa on water and sanitation problems.

How did you raise the money for the start-up?

A combination of low-interest private loans and government grants.

What do you love most about running a business?

It’s a privilege to work with the great people I work with and to help achieve such a basic right to clean water.

What is your least favorite part of the job?

In the beginning, it was difficult for m


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