Based on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP), Xeros is a Leeds University spin-out that has developed a patented system using a unique method of special polymer beads rather than the usual large amounts of fresh water to clean clothes.
The AIM-listed firm is targeting commercial laundry and domestic laundry as well as the tanning industry and textile manufacturing.
The aim of the Hydrofinity is to reduce the consumption of natural resources in laundry and fabric care, primarily in hospitality, leisure and commercial laundry.
Compared to traditional machines, the near-waterless Hydrofinity wash process replaces up to 85% of water with polymer XOrbs which gently massage textiles to provide superior cleaning results as compared to conventional aqueous washing methods.
By combining the molecular structure of the XOrbs with a proprietary detergent solution, dirt from soiled items is attracted and absorbed by the XOrbs, producing cleaner results in ambient water.
A single 25 kg machine saves up to two million litres of water a year and reduces energy consumption by up to 50%. Added benefits include the life of linen being extended due to lower temperatures and a reduction in detergent, both of which translate into bottom-line savings.
XOrbs last for many hundreds of washes before needing to be replaced and recycled.
Mike Ferrand, managing director at Hydrofinity, said: “Our choice of new company name represents our key objective of helping to sustain the world’s water supplies for current and future generations. We must work to tackle global water crises now and can no longer take water for granted.”
Caroline Crossland, marketing director at Hydrofinity, added: “The name is new, but the value we bring remains the same. We are driven by the principle that water is essential and precious. And by helping our customers reduce their environmental footprint while creating substantial cost efficiencies in their laundry operations, we begin to change the conversation in commercial laundry to a focus on water conversation and ongoing sustainability.”
The rebranding has begun in South Africa, where overdevelopment, population growth and climate change has lead to urban areas facing threats of severe drinking-water shortages. In Cape Town, citizens have been urged to consume less water – just 50 liters per day – less than one-sixth of what the average American uses. With a growing tourism sector, hotels have been playing their part too, educating guests and installing water saving technology.
Charl de Beer, manager of fanute, the sole distributor Hydrofinity in South Africa, said: “The near-waterless washing system from Xeros is exciting and can potentially revolutionise the local tourism sector. Saving up to 80% water and nearly 50% electricity are metrics that resonate with South Africans, who are facing rising water costs due to the growing scarcity of these utilities.”
points to a number of urban areas around the world that are threatened by water crises, including Mexico City, Melbourne, Jakarta and Sao Paulo.
Xeros initially targeted the billion dollar US laundry market where areas such as California have water supply shortage issues.