Welcome from Group MD

Dear Friends,


I am delighted to welcome you to the WhiffAway Group website, moreover, hope you find what you are searching for when browsing. We would like to emphasise that the team are here to help and please make contact if further information is required.


The road ahead is extremely exciting. From humble beginnings, we have established our position as market leaders in our core categories of interest. This is the result of our inventive thinking and being pioneers in the development of Waterless Urinal Technology, Biological Solutions and Closed Systems.


In conjunction with our Joint Venture Partners, our developmental and manufacturing capabilities now far exceed those of our competitors. This is reinforced by our continuous pipe line of innovation and impressive patent portfolio. Essentially, this agility has enabled us to adapt to ever changing customer needs, achieve unrivalled functional performance and independent recognition, not limited to receiving a number of approvals from credible institutions.


As well as developing products driven by necessity, our desire to ‘be the best’ at what we do has prompted us to become a service centred organisation. Without taking into account sub-brands, we currently distribute products to over 25 countries and have a physical office presence under our VERTECO brand in 6 countries and rising. In all countries of activity, we have the unique ability to plan, implement and maintain as a service delivery model.


The Group Leadership Team is now the strongest it has ever been and is a combination of vast experience, energy and collective ambition. As a family run company, we continue with our philosophy of investing in exceptional people, enhancing their talents and creating long-term opportunities.


Economic and market conditions have become crucial factors within all our activities. Our products solve operational problems, are cost effective and deliver customers ongoing commercial and environmental savings.


Our aim is to continue with our sustainable vision, by providing our specialist markets with easy access to our products and services. Doing so, whilst maintaining total customer satisfaction and adding value by providing the latest technology.

On behalf of the team, we are looking forward to the challenges ahead and appreciate the support provided by customers and our supply chain to date.


We look forward to working together and assuring you of our best attention at all times.


Yours sincerely,


James E McLean

Group Profile



WhiffAway Group is a joint venture with McAlpine & Co Ltd, who are a global market leader in the development and manufacturing of quality plumbing products. WhiffAway’s success has been built on this partnership’s ability to develop pioneering innovation, catering for both ever changing customer demands and market conditions.


Since 1992, WhiffAway Group has been leading the way in the development of Waterless Urinal Technology and is widely recognised as market leader in the field.


Whiffaway Group is the home of Water-Warrior Technology TM and the principle behind the Verteco brand, with offices strategically placed globally.


Most notably we are considered experts in the development and manufacture of Waterless Urinal Technology, Biological Solutions and Closed Systems.


By way of background, WhiffAway’s Waterless Urinal was introduced in 1993 by Valerie McLean as the first retrofit Waterless Urinal system in the world. Since then our global team of environmental experts have enabled WhiffAway Group to remain leaders in water saving solutions for the washroom environment.


WhiffAway Group has a focused commitment to water conservation through innovative solutions and continuous development. This combined with visionary leadership, strong strategic partners, and a proactive research and development activity has seen the Group achieve exceptional organic growth since the original system’s inception.


In recognition of the commitment to water saving, WhiffAway Group was awarded the Waterwise Marque in 2010. The Marque is awarded annually for products which reduce water wastage or raise the awareness of water efficiency. Furthermore, the Group has received numerous approvals and independent accreditation for its technologies.


WhiffAway Group under its VERTECO brand now has a presence in over 25 different countries and is proud to count many of the world’s top brands and trusted blue chip companies as clients.


As the Group continues to grow, so too does its portfolio of products and services. Unique technologies in water conservation, waste management, and energy reduction solutions continue to be at the forefront of the organisation’s strategy and future focus.


WhiffAway Group – “Saving water, money and helping you to help the environment”

Global Presence



WhiffAway products, systems and solutions are currently being used across 6 continents and covering over 25 countries.
Countries include Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Israel, Ireland, New Zealand, Mexico, South Africa, Singapore, Spain, Turkey, UAE and the USA.









As a growing company, we are constantly looking for the right partners and distribution channels to enhance our global reach so more organisations can benefit from our technologies and associated services. All enquiries welcome.

Leadership Team





Sir Martin Laing CBE


Sir Martin Laing, former Chairman of the John Laing Plc Construction Group. A visionary construction pioneer, Sir Martin was the third generation of the family to hold the position of Chairman. Sir Martin


Valerie McLean


Valerie has had a long extremely successful diverse career in industry. In 1992, Valerie was appointed Chief Executive of Greenhill Industries Plc, a specialist environmental building and water conservation


James McAlpine


Jimmy being in the third generation of McAlpine Plumbing has seen 55 years of service as Technical Director. He is a pioneer whose technical ability has left a permanent and positive footprint on the


James McLean


James is an Honours Graduate from Royal Holloway University of London in Business Management. In 2005, whilst completing his degree, he developed and implemented a new


Prof John Forte OBE


As former Environmental Director of the Forte Group Plc it was John’s inspiration as a visionary to focus on water conservation whilst producing a concept that would not
have a detrimental effect


Sebastian Marshall


Sebastian is an honours graduate from Reading University in Mechanical Engineering. In 2007, his career started as a Commissioning Engineer with a
specialist injection moulding company (KJT


Georgina McLean


Georgina McLean was educated at Holy Cross Convert and the Royal Masonic School for Girls. After leaving in 2003, she studied hair and beauty to


Charbel Aouad


Charbel studied Management Science & Accounting at Royal Holloway University of London followed by a Masters in Marketing at Harvard University.

Our History



  • Office in France launched
  • Office in USA launched
  • PerryMac launched
  • WhiffAway Group supercedes previous year’s growth
  • Valerie McLean celebrates 20 years service
  • IAPMO Approval received
  • Developed Closed Systems

  • WhiffAway Group supplies waterless urinals at London 2012 Olympics
  • Sanicus Gmbh becomes part of WhiffAway Group
  • WhiffAway Group moves into bespoke premises
  • Group achieves in excess of 50% growth

  • New VERTECO website launched www.verteco.com
  • Outside of the UK, the Group rebrands to VERTECO Group – to better represent WhiffAway’s ‘green’ product range and global identity.
  • VERTECO exhibits at ISH Frankfurt.
  • Mobilisation of Australian office covering Australasia and New Zealand.

  • Office established in Dubai, UAE to cover MENA region.
  • WhiffAway wins prestigious Waterwise Marque Award.
  • Central European distribution channels established.
  • Sebastian Marshall appointed to The Board.

  • Saracen Waterless Urinal system launched by Wolseley in all retail Plumb Centres in UK and Ireland.
  • James McLean runner-up in Young Director of the Year Award, IOD.

  • WhiffAway is accepted by Number 10 Downing Street.
  • WhiffAway is given approval from the Department of Trade and Industry.
  • WhiffAway XL is launched.
  • The WhiffAway Group launches a retrofit solution for oil based and liquid seal Waterless Urinals – an adaptor that can retrofit into Duravit, Ernst, Uridan, Sloan, Falcon and Waterfree urinals.

  • James McLean is appointed to The Board.
  • WhiffAway Ltd exhibit at ISH Frankfurt – The world’s largest international innovation exhibition.
  • Partnership with Alfred McAlpine Plc (now Carillion Plc) as preferred installer for nationwide projects.
  • Cannon Hygiene appointed as a UK Distributor.
  • The Group develops a revolutionary new product called XL – The testing process begins.
  • WhiffAway Water Warrior package is released to distributors and current customers.
  • Australian retrofit adaptors developed, broadening the country’s market potential. AQIS and Watermark certification received.
  • The WhiffAway Group is independently commissioned to develop a functional solution to replace oil based and liquid seal waterless urinals.

  • WhiffAway receives approval from the Royal Household.
  • J E McAlpine celebrates 50 years of service for McAlpine & Co.

  • American Embassy Ambassador to Great Britain endorses the WhiffAway system on Reuters.

  • Aggressive political awareness drive highlighting the emerging global water shortages through Kofi Annan, Secretary-General, United Nations.
  • WhiffAway obtains testing approval from prominent German University. After rigorous testing of the WhiffAway valve outperforms Falcon, Urimat, Ernst and Duravit Waterless Urinal systems.

  • Valerie McLean invited to be interviewed by Ruby Wax on UK television.
  • McAlpine & Co promotes the WhiffAway system through its distribution channels in 48 different countries.
  • WhiffAway and McAlpine & Co develop the WhiffAway Flap Valve.

  • 10th Anniversary
  • Sir Martin Laing CBE steps down as Chairman of John Laing PLC and joins the WhiffAway team.
  • WhiffAway Ltd begins a marketing campaign targeting all FTSE 500 Chairmen.
  • John Forte is also appointed to the Board of Hotelier, further building the WhiffAway water conservation message within the hospitality industry.

  • WhiffAway Ltd and McAlpine & Co develop the WhiffAway Integral Model – the world’s first cartridge utilising an extended tube concept. Many reduced flushing systems
    then followed.

  • Under its Bee Environmental brand, WhiffAway succeeds in defending its position in the High Courts.
  • Further patents filed and granted for its Extra Range.
  • Kelvin Hall resigns from the company and forms Enviro-Fresh. Later sold to Rentokil Initial in 2004 for the sum of £9 million pounds.
  • Matrix appointed as a distributor of WhiffAway Products.

  • WhiffAway and McAlpine & Co develop the WhiffAway Extra Model – the pioneering retrofit cartridge concept utilising a valve.

  • McAlpine & Co and WhiffAway Ltd successfully defeat Eskander BV in further legal proceedings concerning Patents.

  • Valerie McLean establishes WhiffAway Group and appoints it the exclusive worldwide sales and marketing rights to the WhiffAway Waterless Urinal and associated technologies.
  • Professor John Forte joins the WhiffAway Ltd Board after the Forte Group takeover.
  • Valerie McLean signs a Joint Venture with McAlpine & Co Ltd. Thus combining expertise and developing a WhiffAway unit in plastics.
  • Valerie McLean is invited to present the WhiffAway system on Channel 4’s The Big Breakfast.
  • WhiffAway Ltd signs a Distribution Agreement with Diversey Lever Ltd (now Johnson Diversey). In the first year of marketing Diversey Lever introduce 19,000 new units into
    the UK market.

  • Valerie McLean enters into a strategic alliance with Hepworth with an aim to develop a non return valve which would prevent odours from below the urinal bowl.
  • The HVO Valve was launched by Hepworth.
  • Valerie McLean signs an exclusive UK Distribution Agreement with Washroom International Ltd.
  • High Court Legal proceedings were initiated due to Washroom International’s infringement of the agreement through imitation and breach of contract.
  • Valerie McLean wins the legal proceedings. All improvements to Washrooms International’s imitation are transferred.

  • The WhiffAway product is successfully implemented throughout the Forte Group’s Little Chef chain (900+ outlets) and the Group’s Travelodge properties (74 hotels), which
    are now known as Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza.
  • Valerie McLean resigns as MD of EVAC (UK) and retains the worldwide rights to the development of the WhiffAway Waterless Urinal.

  • Valerie McLean appointed to the board of EVAC acting as Managing Director of EVAC UK.
  • Malodour Counteractant developed to chemically neutralise odour emitted above the urinal bowl.

  • Valerie McLean designs and develops the world’s first retrofit Waterless Urinal –The WhiffAway Dome & Disc.
  • Valerie McLean establishes the internal team of water and energy consultants for the Forte Group.
  • Valerie McLean introduces EVAC Vacuum technology to Welcome Break Birchanger Green service station, part of the Forte Group. The first vacuum installation on land.
  • After a one year intensive study, the Birchanger Green project, it was identified that 42% of the Forte Group’s overall water consumption was being flushed through urinals.

  • Valerie McLean is commissioned by John Forte, Environmental Director for the Forte Group, to investigate techniques of conserving water. The study encompassed
    thousands of group properties including Little Chef, Happy Eater, Crest, Holiday Inn, Welcome Break and Express Inn.
  • The Forte Group issues a remit to Valerie McLean to “develop or source a cost effective solution that overcomes common urinal problems”.




As environments evolve so too do organisations. From its beginnings in 1992 when WhiffAway Group designed, manufactured, sold and maintained the first generation of retrofit Waterless Urinal systems the company has enjoyed unprecedented success through organic growth.


Whilst continually remaining focused on what has made the organisation successful, primarily innovation and customer service, WhiffAway Group now has a comprehensive product portfolio, which encompasses a wide range of water and environmental saving products.


Outside of the Group’s home market in the UK, where trading will continue under the WhiffAway brand, the Group has a new brand identity for its subsidiaries in its international markets – VERTECO. This essentially stands for Green and Environmentally Conscious. However, the Group remains committed to the same values of heritage and service. These will remain to be core to the new global brand. The people have not changed. The organisation has the same experts with their long term global experience in environmental and sustainability matters.


Although a global organisation requires a global name, VERTECO will continue to utilise the existing brand names in their product capacity.


New Group name internationally – same great philosophy.