Gradiant is the new kind of unicorn worth getting excited about


Remember when it was Is it actually interesting to see how a startup becomes a unicorn?

It used to be a rare occurrence for a company to hit the billion dollar valuation mark – hence the term “unicorn”. But 2020 and 2021 was anything but that. Every week I thought, “Oh, another crypto unicorn? Great. Wow, the fifth neobank this month. Great. Wait, wasn’t the company just founded last year?”

I’m not saying this to belittle the achievements of these companies, but the investment frenzy of 2020 and 2021 made this once-rare milestone seem almost like a late investment.

But in today’s tougher financing market, unicorns are once again rare. And there’s a new addition that shows us what unicorns could look like in 2023.

This week, Boston-based Gradiant announced it has closed a $225 million Series D round led by Centaurus Capital at a $1 billion valuation. The company develops wastewater management and treatment tools for companies in various industries such as food and beverage, pharmaceutical and mining.

Anurag Bajpayee, Gradiant’s co-founder and CEO, told TechCrunch+ that the company has been doubling sales virtually every year for the past several years. “If you think about the industrial revolution and global industry, we got water from nature. We have an opportunity to turn back the water condition on this planet and give water back to nature,” Bajpayee said.

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