SLATER, Iowa (December 12, 2019) – Gross-Wen Technologies, Inc. (GWT) celebrated the opening of their new Slater office with a Dec. 10 ribbon cutting ceremony and open house.
The recently renovated space, located at 404 Main Street in Slater, will function as company headquarters for GWT’s 12 full-time and 3 part-time employees. GWT also holds office space at the Iowa State University Research Park.
Tuesday’s event featured speeches from GWT Vice President of Business Development Jon Kallen; GWT Founder and President Martin Gross; City of Slater Mayor John Kahler; President and CEO, Ames Chamber of Commerce & Economic Development Commission Dan Culhane; and Director of the Iowa Economic Development Authority Debi Durham.
Guest speakers provided congratulatory remarks. Kallen and Gross took the opportunity to thank attendees who came out to support the ribbon cutting.
Gross gave special thanks to GWT Founder Dr. Wen. Gross said the two researchers developed GWT’s patented wastewater treatment technology, called the Revolving Algal Biofilm (RAB) system, while Gross was a graduate student at Iowa State.
“Dr. Wen was my professor and he taught me everything,” Gross said. “I owe all thanks to him.”
Additionally, Gross said he was grateful for the City of Slater and Mayor Kahler’s forward-thinking in choosing GWT’s “Iowa-grown” solution for the community’s wastewater treatment needs. GWT made their first sale to the Slater community in December 2018.
“Slater was considering a $6 million alternative,” Gross said. “However, I’m happy to say by using our system, the community saved over $1 million.”
Gross said more restrictive regulations for the removal of nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus from wastewater, are coming, likely requiring Iowa communities costly treatment facility upgrades.
“As stricter permit requirements come through in the future, the City of Slater is already a step ahead by using our technology,” Gross added.
Durham also applauded Mayor Kahler for recognizing the need for an alternative, more cost-effective wastewater treatment solution for his community.
“You said something, Mayor, and you recognized something – that we have to change the mindset in Iowa,” Durham said. “And that mindset is we are overbuilding all of these systems across our state. The problem is, our communities can’t afford to do that. We have to be more adaptable, adopting more biological resources going forward.”
Durham turned to Gross saying, “And I know you had to test in real theatre in Chicago to make that happen.”
“That’s’ got to change,” Durham continued. “We need research facilities in the State of Iowa that we can test new technologies, like Gross-Wen, that can actually bring this cost of construction down for our communities. And to think Slater is leading the way for that, again, congratulations for this big thinking, we can’t wait to see what you’re going to do next.”
About Gross-Wen Technologies, Inc.
Gross-Wen Technologies is an Iowa-based company working to solve one of the world’s largest problems, water quality. The company was founded in 2014 by Dr. Martin Gross and Dr. Zhiyou Wen, and is based on a technology they developed at Iowa State University. The algae system is capable of cost effectively recovering nitrogen and phosphorus from wastewater. For more information on GWT, visit algae.com
About ISU Startup Factory
The Iowa State University (ISU) Startup Factory is a 52-week intensive program housed at the ISU Research Park (ISURP). Entrepreneurs in the Startup Factory receive formal training, resources, and access to a network of business mentors, advisors, counselors, and investors in two 26-week blocks: the first a formal curriculum centered on business validation, and the second, customized to their individual business needs. For more information on the ISU Startup Factory program, call 515-294-7444 or visit isustartupfactory.org.
About ISU Research Park
Establish in 1987, The Iowa State University Research Park (ISURP) is a real estate development community closely affiliated with Iowa State University. ISURP assists both established and startup companies in connecting with Iowa State’s vast infrastructure to grow their enterprises; whether through students, research entities, equipment or a multitude of other resources. ISURP is currently home to 96 companies and research centers and 10 affiliates, employing 2,253 and 89 people, respectively, and occupies approximately 800,000 square feet of commercial real estate on 400 acres. For more information on ISURP, call 515-296-4204 or visit isupark.org.
Julie Lelonek, Iowa State University Startup Factory Communications
Iowa State University
Office of Economic Development and Industry Relations
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Ames, IA 50010