Bend biz roundup

Element 1 licensed a fuel conversion system; E-commerce retailer Sudara will provide jobs for women in India.

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Element 1 collaborated with Arizona-based ZHRO Power on natural-gas-to-methane conversion.

The agreement is with the parent company of ZHRO Power LLC, an Arizona company that manufactures and sells products for the oil and gas industry, and it comes after a 14-month collaboration between the two companies. Robert Schluter, president of Element 1, said ZHRO initially reached out to Element 1 in 2014, and the two companies embarked on a development project.

The eventual system, known as the ZHRO 1500CMT, is expected to refine 50,000 cubic feet of natural gas per day, converting it into methane using technology developed by Element 1.

(READ MORE: Bend Bulletin)

Sudara moved this month to Bend from California. The online retailer of clothing made in Indian intends to help women who were once victims of the sex trade.

The company provides jobs and other opportunities to women escaping poverty and exploitation as prostitutes. Keith founded the company after two trips to India, where she said she saw firsthand how low-caste women live.

“Girls and women are seen as second-class citizens in India,” Keith said. “Poverty creates it, but then the gender inequality sort of fields it.”

(READ MORE: Bend Bulletin)

For more on Bend’s economic development, read the OB feature in last months’ issue, “On a Bender.”

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