Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) has announced that Gradiant, an MIT-founded water and wastewater solutions unicorn, has chosen Abu Dhabi as it’s headquarters and global innovation centre for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

ADIO and Gradiant signed the cooperation agreement during COP28 UAE joining Abu Dhabi’s hub of innovators spearheading the development and commercialisation of global climate change solutions.

ADIO supports the growth of Abu Dhabi’s economy by attracting innovative companies in high-growth economic sectors aligned with the emirate’s long-term vision. Its collaboration with Gradiant, which has a valuation of AED 3.6 billion, positions Abu Dhabi at the forefront of a rapidly growing industry. The value of the global water and wastewater treatment market is expected to reach AED 4 trillion by 2030.

ADIO is providing Gradiant with a comprehensive range of growth-enabling support and connections to the Abu Dhabi ecosystem and international trade opportunities. The Boston-headquartered company, which has over 1,000 employees worldwide, is positioned to address the world’s increasing water challenges created by industrialisation, population growth and water stress. Its technologies enable the world’s essential industries including semiconductors, pharmaceuticals, food and beverage, renewable energy, refining and chemicals and energy to optimise their mission-critical operations and reduce their water footprint. 

Badr Al-Olama, Director General of ADIO, said: "The addition of a billion dollar company playing an active role in supporting a global priority is a significant boost to the emirate’s innovation ecosystem and net zero commitments. Gradiant’s focus on serving clients across key sectors aligns closely with Abu Dhabi’s economic priorities and its operations in the emirate will be a catalyst for growth across many different areas. As part of its wider Water Security Strategy, the UAE is working to increase the reuse of treated water, which is a goal ADIO is proud to support through strategic collaborations with key global players like Gradiant."

Gradiant offers process and digital solutions for water and wastewater facilities and currently has approximately 250 patents covering a spectrum of technologies. The company brings together an industry-leading technology stack with the power of AI for end-to-end solutions to the world’s most important water challenges. It has developed a product called Smart Ops for plant performance optimisation and asset management of treatment using machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Prakash Govindan, Chief Operating Officer at Gradiant, said: "Our partnership with ADIO amplifies our commitment to developing sustainable water solutions across the EMEA region. Leveraging our proven success in Singapore, we aim to position Abu Dhabi and the UAE at the forefront of innovation in water technology. Our approach aligns with Abu Dhabi’s Economic Vision 2030, and we're dedicated to enhancing water and energy security in the region through our state-of-the-art solutions."

Gradiant’s global innovation centre in Abu Dhabi will develop and commercialise new water treatment technologies. It will also work closely with Khalifa University, Masdar, and local academic institutions to enhance Abu Dhabi’s innovation ecosystem. These partnerships will fuel advancements in Gradiant's RO Infinity and Carrier Gas Extraction (CGE) technologies, and other pioneering water treatment solutions.

ADIO is contributing to the development of sustainable energy solutions in Abu Dhabi, including a collaboration with Siemens Energy AG to establish its Middle East Customer Innovation Centre in the emirate. The centre is one of four global centres that will accelerate the commercialisation of innovative solutions in the journey to net zero in the UAE and globally.