Metering services outsourced in £300m landmark 10-year deal

Posted: Tuesday 8th February 2011

Thames Water has signed a 10-year deal outsourcing all its metering services to Vennsys Limited, a consortium led by Veolia Water UK.

Under the £300m contract, the joint venture will manage all Thames Water’s meter installation, meter reading and the implementation of AMR (automatic meter reading) from January 2011 until March 2020.

Twenty-eight per cent of the 3.3m properties supplied by Thames Water currently have meters. The company aims to increase this to 60 per cent by 2020.

Ten-year contracts are unusual in the water sector in England and Wales, which is regulated in five-year funding periods by Ofwat.

“The length of this contract demonstrates the importance of metering in our long-term plan to manage water resources, along with other measures like making further sustained reductions in leakage by replacing pipes, encouraging customers to be water-efficient and developing new sources of supply,” said Steve Shine, chief operating officer for Thames Water.

“We believe water meters are the fairest way to pay for this increasingly precious resource and they also encourage more water-efficient behaviour - because you pay for what you use and you value what you pay for.

“We have structured this contract to incentivise Vennsys to deliver the absolute best value for our customers’ money and the best service to those customers.

“This programme of work will also make use of state-of-the-art technology.

For example, the hi-tech AMR we will be installing will provide us with more accurate information about the demands on our 20,000-mile pipe network.”

Frédéric Devos, chief executive Veolia Water UK, Ireland and Northern Europe, added: "Veolia Water is delighted to be part of the Vennsys joint venture and I am confident that Vennsys will provide an exceptional metering service to customers on behalf of Thames Water".

Vennsys, which will employ more than 200 people, is a joint venture between Veolia Water UK (51 per cent), H2O Water Services (34 per cent) and Mace

(15 per cent).

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