Rainfall boosting technology startup Rain Enhancement Technologies Inc., which does business as Rainwater Tech, said today it will go public early next year via a merger with special purpose acquisition company dMY Technology Group VI.
Upon completion of the merger, Rainwater Tech will be valued at $200 million, it said in a press release. dMY VI said it will capitalize the company using $241 million that it raised through an initial public offering in October 2021.
Rainwater Tech is led by former Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. President Mike Nefkens, and has plans to commercialize a technology known as “ground-based ionization”, which is able to induce clouds to drop more rain from the sky.
The company has created special masts that can be installed outside, where they can create ionization to increase rainfall in a given area. The masts take around four months to set up, and are said to be able to increase rainfall in a radius of more than 50 miles. In a press release, Rainwater Tech cites third-party tests that show its technology can enhance rainfall by between 9% and 18%.
In an interview with Reuters, Nefkens said the company will make money by charging a recurring subscription for customers that use its infrastructure and associated data services.
“This is not a technology which creates rain out of blue sky, but it is about maximizing the amount of rain when the conditions are right,” Nefkens explained.
Rainwater Tech will offer its technology to customers including corporations, government agencies, insurance firms and farmers once it becomes available early next year.
The company believes there will be big demand for its rainmaking solution. It cites data from the United Nations that shows more than 2.3 billion people in the world currently live in water-stressed areas, where the average annual rainfall is insufficient for the population’s needs. The UN predicts that this number will increase as global warming will lead to drought conditions in more places. Climate change is also expected to affect local water cycles and influence weather patterns, with some scientists believing that this could lead to less rainfall than the historical norm in many regions of the world.
“Our vision is to be the first company of its kind in the water and climate adaptation space by facilitating the return of rain and moisture where it’s needed most,” Nefkens added.
For dMY Technology Group, Rainwater Tech is the fifth company it has taken public via SPAC mergers. Previously, it has partnered with the quantum computing company IonQ Inc. and data analytics startup Planet Labs PBC in similar transactions.
Niccolo de Masi, chief executive officer of dMY VI, said he believes Rainwater Tech’s ionization technology will play a major role in increasing the water table for water-stressed cities, governments and industries. He added that it’s uniquely positioned to meet massive demand from around the globe.
“We are proud to back companies like Rainwater Tech that target high returns on invested capital and, large addressable markets, and are comprised of a team with extensive leadership experience – with the ability to address one of humanity’s biggest challenges,” De Masi said.
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