March 4, 2024

Jordanian youth tackling mismanagement in water delivery

WATR, first place winner of the Startup Roadshow 4, revolutionises water delivery by connecting tanker drivers with customers through a smart app, ensuring timely service and transparent pricing. Tanker owners benefit from regular clients, while customers enjoy features like location tracking and convenient payments.

Living in Jordan means constantly thinking about water. In one of the most water-scarce countries in the world, only 90 cubic meters of water is available for consumption per person annually, far below the global ‘absolute scarcity’ water line of 500 cubic meters per person, according to the International Trade Administration.

Jordan’s government is racing against time to rehabilitate water distribution networks, improve energy efficiency and strengthen the drought management system throughout the Kingdom. However, at present, the government supplies water approximately once a week, which is insufficient for the needs of most families. This forces them to purchase water through wells and water tanker trucks, which in itself is a challenging experience in an entirely unregulated sector. 

“Personally, I struggle with water delivery, especially in the summer when demand peaks, and it was from this struggle that the idea of WATR emerged,” explained Bashar Ameen, Co-founder of WATR.

Bashar, in collaboration with his two friends Abd Al-Rahman Fraij and Majdi Yasen, came up with the business to address the mismanagement of water delivery. WATR (Water Assurance & Transportation Water) started as an online platform and then became an application that connects water tanker drivers with customers in a seamless manner. “With WATR’s smart application, customers can easily request the nearest water tanker for timely delivery, while tanker owners can attract regular clients, boosting their business,” Abd Al-Rahman Fraij, Co-founder of WATR. 

WATR, like any startup, requires mentorship, seed funding, and coaching. Joining the Startup Roadshow 4 by our partner, Jusoor, as part of the Skills Education and Training Programme (STEP), the team got access to unparalleled support. Funded by the Islamic Development Bank and the Abdul Aziz al Ghurair Refugee Education Fund, the programme took WATR on a journey of boot camps and hackathons, during which they participated in more than 670 hours of comprehensive training sessions, including technology tools and mentoring. Among the 108 startups that participated in Jordan, WATR was declared the winning business, receiving $7,000 in seed capital. 

“The entire journey of the Startup Roadshow holds an enduring significance for us,” said Bashar. “While winning seed funding was appreciated, it wasn’t our primary motivation. At this stage, our focus lies on quality and skill development, confident that profitability will naturally ensue.”

The WATR team has since expanded to include five full-time employees and is confident that the application will become ubiquitous on every phone in Jordan. This expansion will lead to increased operations, demand and job opportunities. Their overarching goal is to provide a reliable and eco-friendly solution for both customers and tanker owners.

“WATR is committed to generating sustainable income for tank drivers,” Majdi Yasen emphasised. “With the rising demand, we anticipate growing our team and expanding our reach further.”