Smart water billing systems launched to curb revenue loss
Nairobi based water and energy solutions company Davis & Shirtliff has introduced a new technology to aid in water billing and revenue collection for county water companies which have recently experienced challenges. The Aqtap from Grundfos is an intelligent water ‘ATM’ that aims to address challenges of unreliable water supply for low-income communities by enabling revenue generation and collection for providers while allowing full transparency and accountability for consumers.
The system allows customers to purchase water credits from the vendor or via mobile money which are then stored on Water Cards that are used to dispense water at the Aqtap dispenser unit at a preset rate. The system comprises of a water management system that collects, processes and publishes data from transactions and operations.
According to Davis and Shirtliff Chief Executive Officer, Mr. David Gatende, up to 40 percent of water revenue is lost through unattended leakages and non-payment of bills by customers. Inefficiency in revenue collection and keeping up with demand from an increasing urban population and informal settlements has exerted extra pressure on existing infrastructure.
“Systematic challenges have made it very difficult for the counties to monitor each water point in the service provider’s network. Some of the useful reports that can be generated by such a system include consumption of water over time as well as consumption patterns,” he said.
Mr. Gatende also attributes the lack of sufficient water to the postpaid billing systems of water meters that have been widely used across the country.
“By having efficient pre-paid revenue collection systems, water service providers can ensure a continuous revenue stream to cover, for example, the costs of ongoing operations and maintenance of the water supply systems,” he added.
This even as flood water continues to wreak havoc across the country while only two months previously a drought situation had prevailed.
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