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SQM venture arm invests in UK-based water tech company

Salinity Solutions, a UK-based engineering tech startup, has become the latest to receive the financial backing of SQM Lithium Ventures, the venture capital arm established by SQM to invest in burgeoning technology companies in the lithium space.

On Tuesday, Salinity announced it has secured an initial investment of $1.27 million to fund the next stage of its growth. It now joins industry-leading companies like Altilium Clean Technology and Electric Era under the SQM Lithium Ventures portfolio.

Salinity is the developer of a groundbreaking “batch reverse osmosis” water treatment technology – the first in the world to be manufactured commercially – to dramatically reduce the environmental impact of water treatment.

This technology uses less energy, purifies a higher amount of wastewater, generates less waste, and is more compact and portable than traditional reverse osmosis systems. The first of Salinity’s five registered patents has been approved in the European Union, China and the United States.

Since launching in 2021, Salinity has completed trials in multiple industries, including lithium mining, industrial and municipal wastewater, and food production. The company has built a strong sales pipeline across multiple sectors and geographies.

“SQM’s investment will help us accelerate Salinity’s growth and achieve our 2024 goals of increasing unit sales and securing our first licensing agreement. Their strategic interests in lithium and water, combined with their geographical reach from Chile to China, offer a perfect fit to support our ambitious growth plans,” commented Salinity Solutions CEO Richard Bruges.

The investment, according to SQM, goes hand-in-hand with the Chilean group’s ongoing drive to improve efficiency and reduce its environmental impact as part of its sustainability goals. These include reducing the use of groundwater by 40% by 2030, decreasing brine extraction in the Salar de Atacama by 20% in 2023 and 50% by 2030, and becoming carbon neutral in lithium production by 2030.

As part of their collaboration with SQM, the Salinity Solutions team will run a pilot project in the Salar de Atacama, with its team members based in Antofagasta and other locations in the north of Chile.

Angeles Romo, director of SQM Lithium Ventures, stated: “SQM Lithium Ventures is investing in Salinity Solutions in hopes that the company, through its revolutionary technology, will be capable of scaling and making an impact across different industries and geographies.

“This marks our first investment in water, one of our core focus areas for investment along with lithium and electromobility.”

Source: MINING.COM – Read More