Hydration Labs, Inc.
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Deal Terms

Any questions regarding the opportunity should be directed to Natanel Barookhian natanel@techuangels.com or +1-516-672-4770

Launched: 04/08/2014

Investing Ends: 11/14/2015

28 Dane Street Somerville, MA 02143

Please describe your idea/startup

We’re building a network of machines that purify, flavor, and bottle water at the point of use. Bottles are stored empty and flat, and expanded and filled at the time of sale. Our system cuts the distribution costs and the carbon footprint of bottled beverages by about 80%, while providing an unprecedented ability to customize healthy beverages in a machine.

Who are your main target customers

We are starting out in the $3B office water delivery market, by replacing traditional water coolers with customizable, internet-connected flavored water machines. Specifically, our target customers are offices with between 50-150 employees. The key decision-maker in locations of this size is typically the office manager. Over time we will roll out our technology beyond offices – to gyms, universities, high schools.

What are the current alternatives and who offers them

When offices and gyms want to give their employees/members access to beverages, they currently choose between water coolers (primarily from DS Waters and Nestle) and soda vending machines (with Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and other sugary drinks). People find the former option boring, and the latter option unhealthy. Both these options are costly since they involve trucking full bottles or jugs from bottling plants, a process which is both labor-intensive and fuel-intensive.

How are you different

Refresh is poised to stand out in terms of our innovative user experience, the health of our products, and the efficiency of our operations. In terms of user experience, we are taking customization of beverages to a new extreme by creating “flavor profiles” for each user, tracking their preferences across our network of machines, and offering them the options that best suit them at a given location and time of day. Our flavors are all natural and healthy, and we will integrate our software with health applications to let people track how our beverages improve their nutrition and hydration. Finally, our system is fundamentally more cost-effective due to a patent-pending dispensing system for collapsible bottles. By storing bottles empty and flat, we fit 5x the bottles in the same volume as a traditional beverage vending machine, vastly cutting transportation costs.

What makes you and your team uniquely qualified to succeed in the space and to execute on your plans

Our management team has direct professional experiences in many of the core aspects of our business: brand management, plastics manufacturing, product design, mechanical engineering, and water quality testing. We have successfully recruited an engineering team with excellent mechanical and robotics skills, and advisors with successful track records in beverage vending.

What is the stage of your prototype

We currently have two active beta prototypes and have run pilots in four locations to date. Our newest machine allows users to mix and match four healthy flavor additives to still or sparkling water. Our prototypes are internet-connected and allow us to monitor usage and inventory. We are making a few revisions in advance of professionally manufacturing 10 machines in September/October.

Have you done a beta test, and if so, what has the feedback been

Our beta tests have generated over $300/month per machine on average, putting us on track for a payback period of less than 2 years. (As our production costs decrease with more scale, the payback period of one machine should drop to as low as 6 months.) User feedback has been primarily positive, and in fact many users have requested machines for their own gyms and offices. We already have locations lined up for our 10 machines coming out in the early fall.

How much capital have you raised to date

We have $700K in cash and hard commitments from a group of angel investors, including people with backgrounds in vending machines.

How much are you seeking in this round

We are seeking an additional $300K in total.

How specifically do you plan to use the money

Our seed round will be used to get our first 50 machines to market, each of which will collect an operating profit of over $100/month. This will entail designing for manufacturing, developing intellectual property around beverage recommendation algorithms, and conducting significant user research to strengthen our brand. By late 2015, we will raise a Series A round of $3-4M, which will get us to profitability.

Hydration Labs, Inc. Team

Sean Grundy 

CEO, Finance Business Development


User Experience Product Design

Frank Lee 

Marketing, Operations Product Management

Sean Kelly

Advisor,CEO HUMAN Healthy Vending

Contact Us

If you are interested in this startup please send us an inquiry and we will get back to you as soon as we can!