Zürich, Switzerland: Cleantech venture capital pioneer Emerald Technology Ventures has led an investment into INDRA, a maker of water treatment systems. The round, which was joined by Mela Ventures and The Climate Angels, will boost INDRA’s sales prospects in its home market of India and Southeast Asia. It marks Emerald’s first deal in India, a vast market with rapidly growing need for clean- and climate-tech solutions, particularly in water.
Mumbai, India-based INDRA leverages electrical reactions to rid wastewater of pollutants. Its proprietary technology can remove a wide range of unwanted substances. This includes heavy metals, suspended solids, nitrogen, fats, oil, grease and certain dissolved organics like dyes. Its products are modular and easy to install in a variety of industrial facilities.
Importantly, they occupy a smaller footprint than many traditional wastewater treatment approaches. This is particularly vital for users in India, where space is often at a premium. The “plug-and-play” nature of INDRA’s solutions has already attracted notable end-users like Aditya Birla Group and Unilever, which has contracted to install INDRA’s system in a factory in Indonesia.
INDRA is currently focusing on pharmaceutical, steel manufacturing, food and beverage, and residential and commercial applications, although the scope of its services is potentially much larger. As climate change intensifies water woes in India and its neighbors—one analysis estimates that over half the country already faces high to severe water stress—water recycling will grow in importance. Freshwater is increasingly difficult to come by as municipalities restrict the pumping of groundwater. At the same time, regulators who once turned a blind eye to the dumping of untreated wastewater are clamping down. Clean water is growing more valuable by the day in the region and around the world.
This has the potential to drive significant market growth for INDRA’s products. The global packaged wastewater treatment data market reached $18.1 billion in 2022 and is expected to increase to $32.4 billion by 2028. India’s municipal and industrial wastewater treatment market could grow even more quickly, reaching $9.32 billion by 2027, up from only $3.98 billion in 2020.
“India’s size, influence and vulnerability to climate change make it both a bellwether and vanguard when it comes to the future of water use,” says Emerald Partner Helge Daebel, who will join Indra’s Board. “We are excited to be investing in this dynamic market via INDRA, a company at the cutting-edge of this space.”