Matter, a Bristol-based microplastic technology and innovation company, has raised £7.9m ($10m) in Series A investment.

The company has pioneered solutions for capturing, harvesting and recycling microplastics.

The round was led by S2G Ventures, the direct investment team for Builders Vision, and SOUNDwaves, the sustainability-focused investment vehicle backed by Ashton Kutcher and Guy Oseary.

Additional investment came from Leonardo DiCaprio-backed Consumer ClimateTech fund Regeneration.VC, and Katapult Ocean, which has made a significant follow-on investment, along with a small number of strategic investors.

This funding round will enable Matter to scale its microplastic filtration technology and accelerate its roadmap of solutions for commercial and industrial applications capturing microplastics that would otherwise end in sewage sludge to be used as fertiliser or incinerated, and enabling a fully circular solution.

Adam Root, founder and CEO of Matter, said: “Matter’s vision is to live in a world without micropollutants. We knew from the start that as a small company intent on tackling this global problem, we’d need to work with partners who have the scale, vision, and resources to help us deliver our technology as quickly and effectively as possible.

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“The combined support and expertise of our investors enables us to accelerate our work, moving beyond laundry into industrial-scale applications of our technology, and drive globally meaningful reductions in micropollutant emissions with confidence and speed.”

Kate Danaher, managing director at S2G Ventures, said: “As established partners of Matter, we’ve been impressed by the relentless determination and speed at which they’ve been able to develop innovative solutions and demonstrate an instant impact on the industry.

“Continued investment in solutions like the ones Matter provides are critical, if not essential, to ensuring the long-term health of our oceans, and subsequently, the overall health of our planet.”

Katherine Keating, managing partner at SOUNDwaves, said: “Matter’s micro-filtration technology is class-leading and represents a crucial defence against the continuous flow of microplastic pollution from our homes, workplaces and built environments.

“Legislation is inevitable given the ecological and health impacts of microplastic pollution that are becoming better understood every day, and we are already working with Matter to realise the commercial relationships required to bring this impact to industrial scales, mitigating thousands of tonnes of plastic materials entering our environment every year from textile production and industrial wastewater processes.”

Microplastics are tiny plastic particles less than five millimeters in size and are produced through the production and use of clothing and textiles.

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For each laundry cycle, up to 700,000 microplastic fibres are released from washing machines and into waterways.

An estimated 171 trillion microplastic particles currently float within our oceans, and growing research suggests that microplastics are harmful to the environment, as well as human and animal health.

Matter is working with domestic and commercial laundry appliance manufacturers to integrate its technology into their products.

Matter is also partnering with textile brands and manufacturers to help them better understand and prevent pollution from microfibre fragmentation in the textile manufacturing process.