Altereo confirms its nature – La Revue EIN

Water, industry, concerns : What prospects does Altereon’s new management bring for the group’s businesses and local authorities?

Gilles Brunschwig: The project we are building is first and foremost a social innovation project. The balance of our strategic choices requires increasing the attractiveness of the company to retain our employees and strengthen our first asset, human capital.

We are a service company. We provide our clients with the skills of our teams. It is the daily presence of employees that ensures our development. Team motivation has been at the heart of Altereo’s concern for many years. However, its importance has increased in recent years.

As we face the deep upheavals our society is experiencing, it is especially important to rely on teams with the energy and ambition to engage with communities in the resilience of the territories. This includes very specific things like a 4.5 day work week and also employee share ownership. As part of this operation, the number of associated employees has doubled. They have more than a quarter of their investment.

The second axis of our strategy is to continue the development of our core business in France and abroad by implementing an active foreign growth strategy. The Tunisian fund AfricInvest Europe, which has deep roots in Africa and joins the round table, should especially help us develop on this continent, even if we do not start from scratch. We have very active projects in Morocco with LYDEC (Lyonnaise des Eaux de Casablanca), a long-standing presence in Tunisia with the National Bureau of Sanitation in Nigeria, and we have just completed an 18-month mission in Kampala. The capital of Uganda with HpO application®.

The third main focus of our corporate project is to continue to develop our pioneering spirit through innovation. We are creating a new entity, Altereo Innovation and Digital (Altereo ID), which combines R&D, software development and high added value tools to implement new solutions that meet the challenges of inter-municipal bodies in organizing water policy in their areas. Solutions around AI and GIS.

In summary, motivation, flexibility and innovation are the three pillars of new management. They need to demonstrate that staying true to these values ​​can be a game changer and put Altereon on a path of sustainable growth. We aim for 10% per year, excluding external growth.

EIN: How is the new Altereo Innovation and Digital structure positioned in relation to Altereo’s historical activities?

Jean-Francois closet: We do not deny our know-how. We are one of the leaders in water and sanitation infrastructure planning and area life development, and our core business is still there.

Water utilities will become key players in integrated water management. In the summer and fall of 2022, communities realized that water resources are assets with limitations. We need to review the way we approach infrastructure planning to ensure that all water uses are well served. The energy crisis must also create new needs.

Altereo will therefore rely on the robust skills of its 20-person R&D and GIS tool development teams at Altereo ID to strengthen its ability to develop solutions that enable intelligence and assist in major transitions to terrain. This is the whole meaning of this existence.

EIN: As a leading expert firm in the field of water and urban engineering, how do you perceive the evolution of the risk of failure of water networks over the last 20 years?

JF cabinet: Wealth management: everyone knows it has to be done. This year we worked with FNCCR on the France Data Réseau (FDR) data integration project. Five partner local authorities of significant size participated in this project, which allowed them to have access to the complexity of the data and the optimization tools of the renewal programmes.

There is a clear connection between data management tools and the issue of asset management. Managers have never been closer to getting involved in asset management. But at the level of water services, strategic decisions must be made so that networks are no longer just managed as pipes, but as assets.

The impact of the concentration of local authorities driven by the NOTre Act has led to customers demanding more robust engineering than ever before. Technical services have become more professional, which at the same time prompted us to adapt to the new dimensions of communities, to increase design bureaus in terms of human resources.

If since 2015 the priority of local authorities was to organize the transfer of skills, which is not an easy task, now they will enter the stage of active management of infrastructure.

We are convinced that the tools we develop should allow us to change the visibility of water networks and even territories, especially through HpO® or the Maltose project, a mix of classical engineering and artificial intelligence-based modeling solutions. In accordance with ZAN objectives.

At the same time, we are working with the University of Rouen-Normandy on a joint research laboratory project aiming to express management solutions dedicated to the main water cycle with drinking water services.

Interview with Pascale Meeschaert

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