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Abramovich-Backed Venture Working With Water Companies

Feb. 3 (Bloomberg) -- A U.K. company backed by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich and Ben Goldsmith, son of the late financier James Goldsmith, raised money for an herbicide-free weed-killing product that uses hot water, foam and steam.

Weedingtech raised 750,000 pounds ($1.2 million) from venture capitalist Jon Moulton and other “high-profile” backers, the London-based company said today in an e-mail. It plans to use the funds to increase sales of Foamstream to water companies and councils in the U.K. and Europe.

“This is a sizable market opportunity that is only going to get bigger as more traditional herbicides are legislated against,” Moulton, founder of the private-equity firm Better Capital LLP, said in the statement. Weedingtech has “the right products, platform and expertise to capture a commanding position in this new marketplace” without using chemicals.

The company already is working with companies including Thames Water Utilities Ltd., the U.K.’s largest, to apply the product to clean water sites, it said in the statement. It received 1.3 million pounds from investors that include Abramovich’s Ervington Investments Ltd. in August, it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Louise Downing in London at ldowning4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Randall Hackley at rhackley@bloomberg.net; Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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