The advanced water meter market in Europe is growing at a rapid rate. In the last complete year of research, 2011, advanced water meter shipments grew over 30 percent from 2010, to an estimated 2.6 million units in the whole of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA).
Strong growth is expected to continue, with anticipated double-digit advanced meter unit growth each year through 2014. These findings come from the recently published IMS Research (recently acquired by IHS Inc. (NYSE:IHS)) report, titled The World Market for Water Meters 2012 Edition.
A continued shift towards investing in higher value products, such as communicating meters and static measurement technology, is resulting in revenue growth for water meter and communication module suppliers. While unit shipment growth was estimated at roughly 5 percent for EMEA from 2010 to 2011, revenues grew almost 7 percent over the same time period.
Nicole Juarez, the author of the study and analyst at IMS Research, comments, “In 2011, EMEA had the highest water meter market revenues in the world, at over $1 billion, with advanced meters accounting for more than 20 percent of this. This spending increase, observed on high-value meters, continues to highlight a change in attitude by water utilities in EMEA. More and more, utilities are trusting new technologies to ensure accurate billing while reducing labour costs. Additional needs, such as leak detection for consumers, are providing even more reasons for utilities to modernise their metering infrastructure.”
The communicating meter product share increased to almost 12 percent of total water meters shipped to EMEA in 2011. EMEA is the second strongest advanced metering market globally, accounting for almost 40 percent of global advanced meter shipments in 2011.
This is in large part due to advanced metering projects and increased advanced meter penetration in regions such as the U.K., Poland, and France resulting in strong unit growth for those sub-regions.
By 2016, advanced water meter solutions are anticipated to account for almost a third of the revenue of all water meter sales to EMEA. Adds Juarez, “Shipments of advanced water meters are not uniform throughout EMEA and are not always contingent on a country’s economic strength. Various regulations, potential labour cost savings, and the presence of additional needs such as leak detection, are all important when reviewing the marketplace in EMEA by each country or sub-region.”