Rising to a New Decade’s Water Challenges — Meet the Imagine H2O Accelerator 2020
Thirteen companies from five countries selected to participate in our eleventh Accelerator program
The next decade promises to be pivotal for water. Under pressure from climate change, expanding population, aging infrastructure, urbanization and countless other factors, innovation is crucial to our ability to meet the world’s water needs.
Imagine H2O’s Accelerator identifies and supports the best innovators in water. With 215 applications from 33 countries for 2020, the program provides a platform for growth through industry insight, market presence, mentorship, as well as direct investor & customer introductions.
These thirteen companies join a proven platform for innovation. In 2019, Imagine H2O supported 26 companies across three programs (including Imagine H2O Asia, and the Urban Water Challenge), including $425,000 in direct deployment funding. Imagine H2O companies raised well over $150m in equity financing, eclipsing 2018’s record. Our alumni have now raised more than $500m since 2009, and 2019 saw two more exits — Emagin (acquired by Innovyze) and Oxymem (acquired by DuPont).
2020 promises to be another record year. The companies selected for the Imagine H2O Accelerator 2020 are:
Aqua Membranes (Albuquerque, NM — USA) Aqua Membranes is reimagining the Reverse Osmosis element manufacturing industry by replacing standard mesh feed spacers with their 3D printed spacers, allowing infinite options for optimization of the membrane element. Their technology significantly reduces pressure drop, increases membrane surface area, and reduces fouling.
Datatecnics (Manchester, UK) Datatecnics monitors the structural integrity of pipes, allowing utilities to determine which pipes are in need of maintenance and prevent failures that lead to financial and reputational loss. They bond flexible, low-power, printed electronic sensors to the outer walls of pipes that collect data on the condition and operational environment of the pipe.
Eco2Mix (Fresno, CA — USA) Eco2Mix provides a solution for water pH control for growers, replacing the use of sulfuric acid with carbonic acid. This provides the user with a hassle-free system that treats water pH, reduces alkalinity and helps soil microbiology grow, resulting in healthier soil overall. Their system is between 20% to 50% cheaper than competitors and has no up-front costs.
ecoSPEARS (Altamonte Springs, FL — USA) ecoSPEARS is utilizing NASA-developed technology for the permanent extraction and destruction of persistent environmental toxins from impacted soils, sediment, and groundwater. Their technology uses far less energy, virtually no water and mitigates carbon emissions from traditional remedial methods by up to 90%.
Epic CleanTec (San Francisco, CA — USA) Epic reduces the cost and complexity of wastewater treatment for buildings and municipal sewer systems. This on-site treatment system diverts wastewater organics from the municipal sewer, easing the load on utilities, and it allows the water to be reused by the building, replacing 50–95% of its potable water needs.
IoTank (San Francisco, CA — USA) IoTank is revolutionizing the distributed wastewater treatment system through their sensors, IoT module and cloud platform. Their sensors provide an affordable and simple solution to homeowners with unregulated septic systems. Data will help inform municipalities, homeowners, and pumpers about system health, and crucially when maintenance is needed.
Mimbly (Gothenburg, Sweden) Mimbly lowers the water consumption of washing machines by 70%, on average, while filtering out microplastics. Their add-on solution takes the discarded water, filters it and partially cleans it, and then pumps it back into the machine. The microplastics are captured simultaneously, preventing them from entering the water system.
Oneka Technologies (Sherbrooke, QC — Canada) Oneka offers an autonomous drinking water source directly from the ocean using desalination buoys that operate using wave energy. The units bypass all energy conversions and the Reverse Osmosis desalination is completed mechanically. Drinking water is produced offshore, and sent to the coast through an underwater pipe.
Sensoterra (Amsterdam, Netherlands) Sensoterra has developed a solution for farmers to deliver precise soil moisture data, which dramatically reduces water wastage and increases yield. Their water moisture soil sensor radically reduces complexity and costs by creating a simple to install, durable sensor at an affordable price.
SewerAI (Oakland, CA — USA) SewerAI’s cloud-based system significantly increases productivity and reduces costs in the field. Their computer vision software automatically detects pipeline defects so that inspections can be completed twice as fast with near perfect accuracy, allowing clients to efficiently target their maintenance spend.
StormSensor (Seattle, WA — USA) StormSensor’s cloud-connected sensor network maps how water moves through sewer and stormwater systems. The data is presented in real time, and customers receive live alerts. Unlike traditional methods, StormSensor’s sensor network is inexpensive enough to be deployed across an entire sewershed.
Varuna Tech (Chicago, IL — USA) Varuna is a system of sensors and software that provides small/midsize utilities real-time visibility into the state of their distribution system, enabling them to maintain compliance and deliver clean water. Through process automation and deep analytics, Varuna reduces operational expenses by approximately 30%.
Ziptility (Bloomington, IN — USA) Ziptility helps utilities collect better data and make smarter asset management decisions via task management software built specifically for maintenance staff. As Ziptility is used to organize daily operations, infrastructure data is collected by field crews and leveraged by managers to optimize long term capital improvement planning.
Meet the Accelerator startups at Imagine H2O’s Water Innovation Week 2020 in San Francisco, March 24–26:
The companies officially entered the Accelerator on January 1 2020, and graduate at the end of October. While the program is remote, the companies assemble in San Francisco for Water Innovation Week 2020 from March 22–26. Celebrating Imagine H2O’s 11th year, the week’s events include:
- March 22–25 Accelerator Bootcamp: The IH2O Accelerator company founders will gather for four days of intensive programming, including 1-on-1 sessions with investors, customers and previous IH2O founders.
- March 25 Imagine H2O Accelerator Demo Day: Imagine H2O’s Accelerator companies will pitch to the IH2O judges in the heart of San Francisco. One winner and two runners-up will be announced at Imagine H2O’s annual WaterGala on March 26.
- March 26 Imagine H2O’s Innovation Summit: The Next Decade Presented in partnership with the Water Environment Federation, the fourth annual Innovation Summit will focus on The Next Decade — the issues and opportunities arising in the next 10 years that will be crucial for the success of the water sector and the health of our planet.
- March 26 IH2O’s WaterGala 2020: Join 500+ members of Imagine H2O’s ecosystem in honoring the 2020 Accelerator companies at The Pearl in San Francisco.
Interested in attending Water Innovation Week? Please provide your details here. For any questions or enquiries, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.