If there's one thing every business wants to do, it's to reduce costs. North East Water, runners-up in the Fresh Start competition, aims to help businesses do just that by monitoring water usage to identify wastage through leaks.
Larry Connolly, from Donaghmore, Kilkerley, who for many years ran a successful furniture business, has set up North East Water with the assistance of his son John, a qualified civil engineer.
Since launching the business last year, Larry has worked with a number of local businesses and institutions, helping them reduce their water bills by an average of 10 to 20 per cent.
Working in association with Louth Local Authorities, the company installs a monitor which detects how much water is being used by commercial premises. If, for example, it is found that water is being used when the business is closed, an inspection will be carried out to determine whether there is a leak and to see what repairs are needed.
'We are focusing on SMEs, shops, pubs, restaurants, who are currently being metered and charged for water,' said Larry. 'People do worry about water bills and we can help them reduce their bills by putting a 'logger' on the meter to see how much water is being used.'
Huge amounts of water can be lost through leaks which would otherwise remain undetected and North East Water helped one local firm reduce their water bill by 80 per cent!
'It's a win win situation,' said Larry. 'The business saves money, as those the council as it costs them money to provide water and we make money!'