Squeaky Clean

- —M.M.

Eco­lab, which makes its Just 100 de­but at No. 22, logged $15 bil­lion in rev­enue last year from sell­ing wa­ter-treat­ment chem­i­cals and clean­ing sup­plies, in­clud­ing hand san­i­tizer, to com­pa­nies in­clud­ing Mi­crosoft and Col­gate-Pal­mo­live. This spring, it mod­i­fied pro­duc­tion lines at seven of its wa­ter-treat­ment plants to in­crease its hand san­i­tizer out­put. It also do­nated $3 mil­lion worth of its al­co­hol wipes and dis­in­fec­tant sprays to health-care providers in its St. Paul, Min­nesota, home and around the world. “Our team is proud of the way we stepped up our ef­forts when our ex­per­tise was needed most,” CEO Doug Baker says. The mar­ket agrees: Eco­lab is up more than 50% since stocks bot­tomed out in March. Bill Gates is a fan, too; the bil­lion­aire owns a 14% stake through his in­vest­ment firm, Cas­cade.

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