On 1 May 2016 the Flemish water company De Watergroep joined the collective research programme (BTO) of the Dutch water companies, Vewin and KWR. This cross-border extension of the collective research programme attracted great attention during the BTO Congress on 9 June 2016. The congress was also the occasion for the presentation of the first BTO Implementation Award, which was won by Ate Oosterhof of Vitens and Klaasjan Raat of KWR for Freshkeeper, their smart water well. Another remarkable BTO research project in 2016 was Freshness of Water, the first citizen science field pilot in the Dutch drinking water sector, which was conducted by Waternet and KWR. The year was wrapped up in a festive manner when De Watergroep became a shareholder of KWH Water, the holding company to which KWR belongs. KWH Water thus welcomed its first international shareholder.