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Outsiders Angling for Stakes in U.S. Water Market

23 March 2017
Research Note

The increased focus on U.S. water infrastructure is attracting industry outsiders to the water industry — exploring paths for market entry. Successful entrants have carved-out positions across the value chain, from water utility investment and ownership to O&M service offerings.

In February 2017, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based Peoples Natural Gas indicated a potential expansion of its role in critical infrastructure to include water networks and distribution. Peoples is the latest natural gas company, albeit private equity backed, to consider investments in the U.S. water sector. Other players at the forefront of this investment trend are Liberty Utilities, Citizens Energy Group, Allete, and Pacolet Milliken.

In this Research Note, Bluefield water experts analyze successful strategies of new companies entering water, evaluating the role of private participation, and assessing opportunities and barriers to entry.

Bluefield analyzes strategies of over 250 companies across water markets – search by company. 


  • Roster of outsiders pursuing water stakes continues to evolve.
  • Divergent paths taken to carve out water positions.
  • State regulatory frameworks grease skids for private utility investment.

Companies Mentioned

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Another example re: critical infrastructure providers converging under a single investor-owned utility banner: Pa. approves @AquaAmerica’s $4.3 billion expansion into natural gas. Now it wants to be Essential.… via @PhillyInquirer #PrivateWater

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