Len Bland from Nano Gas Environmental introduced the technology to clean wastewater with nanobubbles.
The topics we covered:
- How did it come up with the idea of cleaning wastewater?
- Role of patents.
- The next milestones for the company
- Competition in the market
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Tarmo Virki 0:07
Welcome to nature back podcast where we are speaking with investors and entrepreneurs about the green future. My name is Tarmo Virki. And today my guest is Len Bland from Nano Gas Technologies. Enjoy the show. Tell us what you're doing.
Len Bland 0:22
Ah, yeah, my company is nano gas, environmental, we clean and energise water with tiny bubbles.
Tarmo Virki 0:31
So like bubbly drinks?
Len Bland 0:34
Well, you can imagine it that way. But we're in three markets. Number three huge markets where we deliver a lot of value for our customers. One is cleaning out toxic algae and sludge and sewage lagoons. Another one is cleaning up oil industry wastewater. And the third one is getting more oil out of oil wells without using any chemicals or having to do any drilling or anything like that.
Tarmo Virki 1:06
Well, so whole folio with the with the company, is it just technology or, you know, is it in progress, you know, using dozens of countries and making millions of dollars already?
Len Bland 1:20
Well, that's the plan. Right now, we've proven it commercially, we've got you know, we have lifetime revenue about $550,000. In each one of those three markets, we selected them because they are there they're proven we've we've gone to sewage lagoon and West Texas, it was full of algae and sludge. They were probably releasing water that that was could be toxic. And we we traded it within the first four days they algae disappeared. And over time the sludge disappeared, we consumed 95% of the sludge. And they were looking at spending $10 million, I'm sorry, $1 million to dredge the lagoon for 300 or 300 hauling community. So we say them at 85% of what they were going to spend, which was great. In in the oil industry wastewater, what happens is they spend millions of hours Building a facility to separate the oil in the water, use chemicals to clean the water and then shove that water back down into the ground where it didn't come from before. Those are called saltwater disposal wells. And those are causing earthquakes. And so that's, you know that that's a big deal cos that water can be reused by the oil industry instead of freshwater. So we help with that. And then on the end, so we we've proven that we can do that in the field, we separated oil and water, we enable them to make more to collect more oil out of that water and we cleaned it up to the point where it was reusable. Then on oil wells, we've treated four different wells. They each came back over 200% of their prior production. And, and they they decline over time, but they make money for the for the owner. And we do that by just putting nitrogen into the water. So it's all natural.
Tarmo Virki 3:42
What's the backstory? How did it come up with the invention?
Len Bland 3:47
Well, I started I had a business concept equity group, we prepare entrepreneurs for investment. We provide strategic and financial advisory services. I'm always approached with interest in companies I particularly like those with advanced materials and making real changes in the world. But we see everything Software as a Service, cryptocurrency everything. And we help them prepare their message and get it out to the world. So one company approached us with a technology that was for, you know, cleaning wastewater with this technology. And he said, Wow, this is this is really interesting. You know, I really like it. Let's see if we can get involved. We want to meet with them. We had a great conversation. We said oh, you know, maybe we could mark it for you. And and then they said the technology came out of Wayne State University in the Detroit area. And we we I knew somebody at the incubator there. So I contacted them and they said that company doesn't own the technology. So we went on a journey To find the owner, and then eventually, we found somebody who had developed a much better new version of the technology. And that's what we built our company on.
Tarmo Virki 5:11
Was that long time ago or just recently,
Len Bland 5:14
that was 10 years ago. That's given us time to develop great pans we have, we've received about 21 patents, but we've kept 10 of them now that we understand where the where the best countries are to have. And and we've got another 15 patents filed.
Tarmo Virki 5:40
That's quite a lot for early stage company.
Len Bland 5:43
Yes. We're, you know, we just received, we've got patents on our technology that you know, covers, how do we make our nanobubbles, so that the machine doesn't get clogged up, if you were using a membrane, which is common. In your trading dirty water, like sewage water, like oil industry, wastewater, it's gonna get clogged up, it might work the first time or the second time, and suddenly, it'll stop working as well. And you wonder, Well, what happened, you could spend all your time trying to clean the membranes, or our technology, we can take even sand and grid into our system. And it will, it will work just fine. We don't clog up. So that's one aspect. And then another one that we're really proud of is that we were able to secure a patent on using nano bubbles in a in a wet in an oil well to recover oil.
Tarmo Virki 6:47
That sounds quite astonishing. The looking forward, what are the next milestones for the company?
Len Bland 6:55
Well, we're heading out right now to West Texas. And we're going to show the owner of an oil field with 4500 wells, well, it's going to work for them. Right now they're giving away. They estimate we don't know for sure, they don't know for sure. But they're testing and they'll find out, they think they might be giving away 10% of their oil production actually paying somebody to take away their dirty water, which is 10% of their oil production will enable them to get all that water. At the same time, we are expanding our distributor network, which is something we really want to do. And the distributors, we've so we've got distributors lined up in for the shallow lagoons and ponds to clean up the algae and sludge. And one of them has identified a community with a real need, they have 2000 homes, they're looking at spending $3 million to clean up their lagoon is full of sludge. And you know, we've quoted them, we've given them a quote for, you know, 20% of that.
Tarmo Virki 8:25
The is that gold in the US? Or are you operating, you know, much more widely.
Len Bland 8:31
It's, it's all in the US right? Now we want to you know, we're right there on the edge of having all the data and the reports and the papers and everything. And so we're, you know, there's plenty of need in the US and around the world for this, I mean, everywhere. So we're focused on the US, our approach to going international is that it's a new market, we'd need to raise more money to enter that market and do it properly. And so anybody that comes to us with international opportunities, are saying, well, you know, we need funding along with that either the funding from life licencing or a JV or an investment into our company. So we can we can go to that country and have the right partnership and do it right. Instead of all the international framework that's needed.
Tarmo Virki 9:29
We still really need kind of what's the competition is there other nano gas technology companies are?
Len Bland 9:37
So there are other nano bubble companies. Again, the most prevalent ones use membranes. Some use cavitation cavitation is where you split the mouth water molecules apart and are it creates heat and it creates In it creates oxygen. The cavitation companies are expensive to operate, they have high electricity costs and costs, they require a lot of maintenance because they use metals to make that happen. The membranes get clogged up like we talked about. Now, we view our real competition for the markets we selected with his dirty water to be existing methods, disposing water in a saltwater disposal and causing earthquakes in the oil industry. And dredging to clean up your sewage lagoon in the in the in the wastewater treatment. Now, if there's if you've got a deep pond and wastewater treatment plants use hit built deep ditches. And what those enable them to do is they can bubble small bubbles through that and small bubbles arise. But it gives them some time to the water some time to absorb absorb the oxygen in those small bubbles when they're really deep. So specifically, we're starting with, we think we can make a difference there. But we're starting with shallow lagoons where those bubbles would rise to pass and they wouldn't work at all.
Tarmo Virki 11:33
And the next funding round will be when
Len Bland 11:38
we're raising three and a half million dollars right now for 17 and a half percent of the company. We think we'll need that round, and maybe one more. Once we return. We think that'll get us profitable. And then once we return profitable, we'll raise another round. Because we're, we understand how these nano bubbles work. And we think the market doesn't understand this. Yeah. And so it's very important for us to offer a service instead of selling equipment. I can't tell you how many times I got, oh, you know, I just wanted a nano bubbler, they will do you know, 50 gallons a minute? Well, you know, I could sell you a hose. And that will have some nano bubbles in it and that to do 50 gallons a minute. How about that. So they really need an entire solution. We provide the entire solution we we lease or rent them to the customer.
Tarmo Virki 12:43
So the kind of teaching the clientele is the bake opportunity in a way going forward.
Len Bland 12:54
Yeah, teaching the clientele running it for them. So they don't have to worry about it, making sure it's right, making sure everything's monitored, running it collecting the data so that we can eventually use that for predictive maintenance and for figuring out how to be even more efficient and how these systems run. Absolutely.
Tarmo Virki 13:19
Thanks, Len for this chat and good luck going forward.
Len Bland 13:24
Oh, thank you so much.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai