Tech firms CityBase and Varuna partner to provide water quality data to water utilities

Real-time dashboards improve water management, customer service

Government technology firm CityBase and Varuna, an analytics platform for water utilities, announced today that they have entered into a partnership to provide water utilities with comprehensive water quality data that will be shared with residential customers. Both companies are based in Chicago.

CityBase, which transforms the way municipalities connect and do business with constituents, works with local governments and utilities to integrate payment functionality, business processes, and communications onto a central, cloud-based platform that consumers can access through the web, mobile, kiosk, IVR, or point of sale.

Varuna is an AI-powered platform that helps utilities effectively manage their distribution system to deliver clean water by providing recommendations and predictions that optimize business decisions. The company’s team has a long track record of success working with power utilities.

Water utilities are required by the EPA to provide a water quality report to their customers. But those reports are difficult to read. Varuna creates real-time dashboards that are easy to access and understand. Available 24/7 with the latest information, they also help utilities improve customer service and transparency.

A utility can use the data to isolate problems and be more targeted in investigating the causes. Consumers can use visualization tools to personalize their household data, for example, to see how the lead level in their home’s tap water compares with the regional average. 

“Varuna is doing great things to personalize services for constituents that improve their quality of life, and we are offering our clients the opportunity to be among the early adopters of its innovative products,” said CityBase CEO Mike Duffy. “In exchange for having this value-add, our clients will be giving feedback to Varuna that will be instrumental in helping them shape their products.”

CityBase, which is covering the costs for its water utility clients for one year, will roll out the pilot program over the next several months.

Varuna is part of the Urban-X/Mini start-up accelerator for companies focused on solving problems facing the world’s urban environment. Co-founder Seyi Fabode said his company’s partnership with CityBase allows the two like-minded businesses to help utilities provide better service while also giving consumers better information. 

“We are strongly committed to helping cities provide clean water at a time when the quality of tap water is a growing concern and getting increased scrutiny,” he said. “Clean water is a fundamental right and one of our most basic needs.”

More than 100 government agencies and utilities use the CityBase platform for improved service delivery, more efficient operations, and better data. The company provides secure, end-to-end payment solutions and digital services that integrate with client databases through a state-of-the-art unified API.

CityBase aims to improve the options available to utility consumers to pay their bills and give service providers better data to make informed decisions about their operations.

With continuous input from its clients and their constituents, CityBase catalogues, standardizes, facilitates, and automates common interactions between people and public services. This frees their clients to focus on what they do best: supporting the people and businesses who live and work in their local government service areas.