The Water Council (TWC) has hired international trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) consultant, Beverley Ferrara, to lead its European outreach. Based in Belfast, Ireland, Ferrara will assist in the organisation’s ongoing European efforts to provide consistent and responsive engagement with existing as well as potential partners, and will nurture a pipeline of water tech companies with the potential to establish operations in the United States (U.S.).
Prior to her role as European representative for TWC, Ferrara was the director of expansion and corporate relocation with the Milwaukee 7, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S., where she helped market the region as an investment location to businesses around the globe. While there, she supported TWC by identifying potential investors, planning tailored site visits for prospective water tech companies and attending water tech trade shows in both Europe and the U.S.
“Adding Beverley to our team was a natural fit and an easy decision,” Dean Amhaus, president and CEO of TWC, said. “Our history with Beverley, combined with her experience and knowledge of the European market is exactly what we were looking for as we increase our global presence. She will be our ‘feet-on-the-ground’ in Europe as we continue building valuable relationships in that region of the world.”
Milwaukee’s anticipation of the world’s water needs has put it at the forefront of technology and numerous water-tech innovators from around the world have identified the region as the ‘go-to’ location because of the powerful ecosystem TWC has fostered. Already, the organisation has established collaborations with entities in the Netherlands, France, and Germany.
“The challenge is to further cultivate and expand those partnerships and build connections between Milwaukee’s water tech specialists and potential partners, customers, and investors from Europe – exactly why Beverley’s role in Europe is so crucial,” Amhaus stated.
“I strongly believe in the work of The Water Council as an agent for global change,” Ferrara said. “I’ve seen first-hand that the ‘soft landing’ offered by the Global Water Centre, combined with the knowledge, support and resources provided, makes it a highly attractive proposition for companies entering the U.S. market.”
In October 2017, TWC participated in the European Union Water Management Study Tour where public and private sectors from the global water industry met to discuss their expertise on best practices and to learn about cutting-edge solutions to water issues throughout Europe.
“It was clear the region is hungry for innovative solutions and approaches that The Water Council can address through various members, partnerships, and affiliations we have,” Amhaus added. “In addition, the tour provided us with a valuable and personal approach to gaining a better understanding of water advancements in Europe. Beverley’s location in Ireland will provide direct access and face-to-face engagement with leaders in the area that will have lasting benefits to the water industry in the state of Wisconsin.”
Ferrara’s addition to the TWC team came following a sub-grant of US$100,000 in late 2017 over three years from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. The grant to UW-Oshkosh was provided by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) to help non-profits attract foreign investment to the state and hire international trade consultants in targeted industries, including bioscience, manufacturing, aviation, and water technology.
“Thanks in large part to the efforts of The Water Council, Wisconsin has become a global leader in water technology, and our state’s efforts in this industry are receiving international recognition, Tricia Braun, deputy secretary and COO WEDC, and a member of TWC Board of Directors, concluded. “Beverley’s new role will increase awareness throughout Europe that the innovations taking place at Wisconsin’s 200-plus water technology companies can help other countries find solutions to their water challenges.”