Treating water

Written on the 11 August 2009

Treating water

A Brisbane water treatment exporter that saves on electricity without using chemicals is expecting 500 per cent growth within three years.

With technology that produces chlorine in a sustainable way, Australian Innovation Systems executive director Elena Gosse says the technology is in high demand.

IT’S a scare resource but Australian Innovation Systems (AIS) has found a chemical-free solution to purify and recycle using minerals already contained in water.

Executive director Elena Gosse says before her company’s products Autochlor and Ecoline, chlorinating water involved using chemicals that AIS manages to cut out of the process.

“You can’t smell it, you can’t be affected by it – it works so pure that you can use it for a lot. Last year we created Ecoline which purifies fresh water and so it takes our business outside the pool for irrigation, recycling and drinking water treatment. The opportunities are truly endless,” she says.

“For example, after you’ve treated your pool and you want to change the water you can dump it on your garden. It’s a big step but our developing team has been working on it for five years to save water.”

By eliminating chemicals she says the process eliminates public liability for users, in a process like a ‘factory on-site’ by making chlorine from small minerals and salts already in the water. The process also saves 60 per cent in energy costs.

The development of Ecoline stems from AIS’s product Autochlor for treatment of salt water and to put the level of growth into perspective she highlights that in 1995 revenue was $1 million. That figure now stands at $9.2 million.

“We make about 47 per cent profit but we reinvest part of that into research and development, which is our business philosophy to stay ahead of the competition. It’s a big jump and we see an increase of 500 per cent in the next two to three years, which will deliver new jobs for Queensland.”

AIS recently won the Stevie Business Innovation Award for Asia and was the runner up globally, so it comes as no surprise that Gosse plans to hire more employees through a planned expansion phase.

In 1992 AIS had just three employees but today it has 53, exporting to 53 countries from Indonesia and Canada, right through to its newly opened markets in Russia and the Middle East.

“Last year we bought an 11000sqm site in Tingalpa and next year we plan to build an 8000sqm purpose built factory,” she says.

“There’s no similar system worldwide and we do it out of Brisbane, from our factories in Wynnum and one in Tingalpa.

“It doesn’t matter what product you have. You can’t have an innovative product without an innovative team.”


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