- Founders: Miroslav Gechev, Lubo Minchev, Ivan Zhitiyanov
- Founded in: 2020, Sofia, Bulgaria
- Employees: 9
- Money raised: €850, 000 euro investment from Telelink Investments.
- Ultimate goal: Enable customers to make optimized management decisions based on real data in urban water supply and urban air quality.
It is predicted that there will be a global water shortage as early as 2030 due to climate change. A short-term solution that delivers immediate results is provided by Bulgaria’s Develiot. CEO and co-founder Miroslav Gechev explains how.
What exactly is it that Develiot does?
“We make global climate challenges manageable with data-driven products. Our focus is on urban water supply and urban air quality. We have scalable end-to-end solutions that enable cities to immediately see where the problem lies and proactively address that. If you look at the water consumption of people, that is something that you can track. In developing countries, for example, water is sometimes stolen by private individuals, but also by companies. That is, they take more water than they pay for. This can be done by sabotaging the water meter or by connecting a hose to a municipal tap. Then there is the pollution of water by companies, for instance, and the improper treatment of water. By using our hardware, cities can find the root of the problem.”
So what kind of hardware is this that can detect that?
“We have two things: a Remote Water Meter Reader and a Water Monitoring Station. The former can be easily connected to standard pulse water meters or other equipment to remotely collect data on water usage. The Water Monitoring Station is designed to monitor rivers and dams to detect potential flooding, drought and water quality deterioration at an early stage.”
What target group are you focusing on with your services?
“We are focusing on developing countries and Eastern Europe. Did you know that in Eastern Europe, there are countries with water losses of between forty and sixty percent? Another reason why we are starting to build up our name and services here, is that in more developed countries, such as Western Europe and America, there are larger, more mature competitors that we have to compete against. By becoming an established name in the East, and proving ourselves without having to compete with other companies, new doors will open to us more quickly. We now have a partnership with a city in Italy thanks to this tactic.”
Is the effectiveness of your services already measurable?
“Yes definitely, there is a town in Bulgaria where the municipality thought a factory was polluting the water. Within days, our monitor clearly showed that there was deadly pollution in the water. After the police were sent in, it turned out that it was another factory that was burning poor-quality fuel. They would never have been able to detect this without our Water Monitoring Station. You can see it as an early warning alarm that already goes off when there is smoke, while the fire has yet to start.”
What are your future plans?
We want to become the main service provider for water companies. We want to develop a system that enables all the data that is collected to be shared with third parties. To do that, we are initially starting with data on water consumption. We see that now as a solution to the water problem. It is an end goal that we are working towards. One system that unifies all the different parameters in the city.”
You can read the other installments in this series here