Moleaer helps industrial giants like ExxonMobil and ABInBev to clamp down on water usage. Check out the 13-slide pitch deck it used to raise $40 million.
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- Moleaer helps companies reduce their water usage through nanobubbles.
- The California-based company just raised a $40 million Series C round from Apollo.
- We got an exclusive look at the 13-slide pitch deck it used to secure the funds.
A startup that uses nanobubble technology to reduce water usage at industrial giants like ExxonMobil and ABInBev just raised $40 million in fresh funds.
California-based Moleaer has developed patented technology that can improve food production and processing, water and wastewater treatment, and the health of marine ecosystems.
Bruce Shelton, now chief technology officer, and Warren Russell, Moleaer’s chief operating officer, were researching how to efficiently dissolve oxygen in water to better treat wastewater using nanobubbles and decided to commercialize the idea, going on to found Moleaer in 2016.
Nanobubbles are nanoscopic bubbles – 2,500 times smaller than a grain of salt – that can be formed using any gas and injected into any liquid. The nanobubbles can in turn form natural oxidants in water, removing the need for chemicals.
“They behave completely differently from all of the bubbles,” Nicholas Dyner, who invested in the company’s seed round before joining as its CEO in 2017, told Insider.
“I think most people take for granted that water is a finite resource. What we can do is just help people use less of it to obtain whatever it is they need from that water.”
Dyner said that existing processes were “incredibly inefficient” and that much of today’s best-in-class technology dissolve only a small proportion of oxygen in water.
“What happens is that the bubble forms, starts to rise, and you’re trying to get it dissolve before it comes to the surface and pops,” he said. “The vast majority of air or oxygen never actually dissolves.”
Nanobubbles, however, are so small that they lack the buoyancy to rise. A nanobubble is instead suspended in the water and weakens its molecular bonds, helping it flow more easily. When the bubble ruptures, it releases energy and forms a disinfectant, improving water quality.
Moleaer’s systems – called nanobubble generators – connect to an existing pipe and inject gas straight into the liquid. There are multiple generators, the smallest of which “fits in the palm of your hand.”
Its biggest market is currently agriculture, a sector that gobbles 70% of all freshwater annually.
Farmers are looking for two things in their irrigation: highly oxygenated water and water that is disease-free, Dyner said. The more oxygenated the water, the more robust and healthy the plant, Dyner said.
“Plant resiliency is becoming a major issue,” he said. “The more heat stress it’s under, the more the plant needs to be able to withstand that to be able to get to harvest and deliver the yield the farmer needs.”
The company’s technology is being used in other industries including in consumer products, though they are not yet in stores and Dyner could not share more details. Around 90% of its customers use the technology to put air or oxygen into water, but some work with gases.
The company has some competitors, it said, but claims to have the highest oxygen transfer rate in the industry at around 85%.
It brings the company’s total raised to $61 million.
The fresh round was led by New York-based investment management firm Apollo, whose previous investments include Cox Media Group and Yahoo. Swedish manufacturer Husqvarna also joined the round as a strategic partner and existing investors participated.
It will be used to expand headcount from nearly 60 to 80 people by the end of the year, including a small commercial team in Norway, where it has some traction. Moleaer is moving into a new headquarters, which Dyner said is near SpaceX, and is opening a small facility in Spain.
Check out the 13-slide pitch deck below: