Little Talk with Jesse and Jonathan _ Memobottle


Da quando vi avevo parlato di memobottle in un post di un paio di anni fa Jesse, Jonathan e la loro idea per una bottiglia in plastica riutilizzabile a che richiamasse la forma di un foglio di carta ne hanno fatta di strada. 
Se all'epoca era appena terminata la loro campagna su Kickstarter e stavano per lanciare il progetto sul mercato, il mese scorso le loro bottiglie erano tra i prodotti selezionati come regalo per i candidati agli Oscar e attualmente sono vendute in oltre 70 paesi nel mondo.
La veloce crescita del loro business e il successo di memobottle non ha però cambiato il modo con cui affrontano questo progetto, ne tanto meno il loro spirito nomade e moderno, infatti, per esempio, l'azienda è priva di uffici, gestita interamente tramite internet che permette a tutti i dipendenti di viaggiare spesso.
Lascio che a raccontarvi di più siano proprio i due fondatori, con questa chiacchierata virtuale.

Hi Jesse and Jonathan, let's start with a little jump back in time: tell me when and how did you decide to develop the memobottle from the first idea to a real product.
The idea of memobottle was born on my sketch pad over four years ago but it wasn’t until February 2014 that we decided to make memobottle a reality.
We had exposed the concept and prototypes to friends and family but the true validation came when we launched the memobottle on the crowd funding platform Kickstarter in August 2014. We were exposed, the idea was out in the world and the people were going to decide.
We quickly realized the potential of memobottle and the impact the core aim could have when we surpassed our funding goal of $15K within 36 hours. 45 days later the Kickstarter campaign finished and we had raised over $261k in funding. Society had backed our concept and it has been full steam ahead ever since.

So, you started this project with a crowdfunding on Kickstarter, with a fast and very positive reaction that is still growing; did you imagine such a great success?
The Kickstarter process was one of the most rewarding yet challenging experiences of my life. It initiated an enormous learning curve that is still building upon itself today. Both Jonathan and I are extremely thankful to the backers that supported memobottle when it was only an idea, allowing it to develop into a physical product and brand.
We never imagined that memobottle could reach the heights that it has! 
We really had no idea how much this project would resonate with the public until the success of our kickstarter campaign. We had presented the idea to our family and friends, but the validity that came from Kickstarter was phenomenal. It’s been a whirlwind ever since! We cannot believe how far memobottle has come since the humble kickstarter days.

One of your aims is to reduce the waste of single-use bottles. Do you think that a well designed product, meaning useful and practical, not only aesthetically nice, could bring a change in one’s habits or focus the attention on a social- environmental problem? 
Human convenience is often the catalyst for devastating climate damage so to make a positive change and impact on the environment we needed to create something that offered improved human convenience coupled with a clear environmental advantage.
We realised a long time ago that people really are resistant to change. Unfortunately, when presented with two options a lot of people still go with the more convenient or cheaper option, regardless of the environmental or social implications.
To really break people’s habits around single-use drink bottles we knew we had to offer something that was truly convenient, beautiful and sustainable in design. The memobottle™ had to make people think, and encourage people to ask questions.

The other main characteristic of memobottle is its slim shape, completely different from the other plastic bottles that we usually use...
We were finding not only a frustration with single-use drink bottles from an environmental stance but we found it intriguing as to why all bottles were round. Bottles hadn’t changed shape in decades yet tablets, laptops and computer bags were all flat in their design. Round bottles just didn’t fit with modern lives. So, we decided to flip the equation.
The idea for a premium, re-usable, flat water bottle resembling the shape of a piece of paper was born. We fittingly named it the “memobottle”. The memobottle™ is designed around the international paper sizes (A5 and A6), the form mimics the shape of a piece of paper to neatly slide into carry bags alongside computers, books and valuables.

The things are going pretty well, but tell me, what was your biggest satisfaction until now?
Watching memobottle grow and begin to have an impact on the single-use bottle industry while assisting in changing how people view bottled water is one of the most rewarding experiences we could ask for. The memobottle has become a vehicle for positive change.
On top of this there have been many highlights along the memobottle journey.
From the moment we decided to launch memobottle™ and define what it actually stood for, we have always been based in different countries. Jesse was in Melbourne, Australia and Jonathan was based in San Diego, California. Starting a business while in two different countries had its challenges but the distance also helped us realise what sort of business we wanted to be.

Since the beginning, with the crow founding and now that you are living in different nations, the Internet must be fundamental to you and your business...
We decided that we did not want to own our own warehouse, shop front, or even office (for now). We have the opportunity to create a purely online, automated business.
Because of this, neither we nor our employees are location specific, we are constantly travelling the world meeting customers and suppliers and having the flexibility to work when required, while experiencing a little of what this world has to offer. We think our environmental and cultural appreciation comes out in our social media.
It’s a beautiful thing that we are able to run a multi-million dollar business from anywhere on the globe. We are currently deep within the Arctic Circle on a photoshoot while managing a marketing campaign for our inclusion in the 2016 Gift bags to be provided to this years Oscar Nominees. It has been a very exciting 18 months.
On top of running a nomadic business, the emotional rollercoaster of the Kickstarter campaign was a definite highlight. Learning more and more about people and the way different businesses operate excites me, but the truly humbling experience was the realization that society had backed my design all the way to the global stage.
We pinch ourselves each day. We are two childhood mates working together each day doing what we are passionate about, it doesn’t get much better than that on a personal level.

Do you have new ideas swirling in your mind? Are you thinking of extending your products’ offert? 
We have some exciting ideas that we are currently implementing for memobottle. The underlying aim of memobottle is to assist in reducing the number of single-use bottles going into landfill and our environment; the one bottle movement has been set up to create a community of like-minded people who wish to move towards a more reusable society. Personally, we are committed to introducing products that provide environmental benefit whilst improving life convenience and encouraging people to think differently about how they approach the world. The last few months have been exciting as we expand our retail partners around the world. Coupling with a number of Moderns Art Museums has been an honour in itself.
Our mission has always been to assist in inspiring society to move back towards a reusable society. We aim to increase our social efforts and continue to create a positive difference for the environment.
Overall, we’d love to think that in five years’ time there has been a significant reduction in single-use water bottle consumption and a societal shift towards becoming more reusable.

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