Two leading industry figures have launched The Well Water, a new-style hydration dispenser which looks set to transform the water cooler sector. The new system combines boxed Scottish Natural Mineral Water with next generation dispensers, to reduce the use of plastic, avoid the need for sanitization visits, save space, and so improve hygiene, costs, and logistics for Facilities Managers when providing hydration solutions in the workplace.
The Well Water is the brainchild of microbiologist Kieran McKenna who has 30 years’ experience in the water cooler industry and who piloted an early version of what is now The Well Water in 2008. He is working with CEO David Albers who also has over 30 years’ experience in the water cooler industry.
“The Well Water is an industry-first disruptive technology and represents a long overdue game changer for hydration,” says Kieran McKenna. “Boxed water is the most sustainable packaged water solution. It is lighter, easier to transport, and has a lower carbon footprint than water packed in plastic or glass.”
The company, which is currently supplying direct to customers in Dublin, London and Edinburgh, is seeking re-sellers to help handle what is anticipated to be a high demand for the products.
As part of a multi-million-pound investment at the plant, a small-pack single-use plastic water bottling line has been decommissioned at the company’s Purely Scottish production facility and replaced with a high-tech bag-in-box system, bringing immediate benefits. A single 10 litre box of water replaces 40 x 250ml bottles, 40 caps, 40 plastic labels and all the associated packaging.
The boxed water revolution
Boxed water preserves the quality of the water, as it is fully protected from light, and this, combined with the tap system and a contracting bag, makes it impossible for oxygen to enter the pack. This means that the water can be consumed in optimal conditions, with all its properties intact for many weeks after it is opened.
Purely Scottish Boxed Water is BPA free and is now available in three sizes: 12.75 litres; 10 litres; and a fridge-friendly 6 litre box.
Award winning water dispensers
The Well Water dispenser has been designed to solve many of the problems of conventional water coolers, which have remained mostly unchanged over the last 20 years. Already, the design has won a Good Design Award from The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design. It was also joint winner of the small/medium business category in the 2021 Irish Business Design Challenge, organised by the Design & Crafts Council Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and Local Enterprise Offices.
“Our design team’s extensive research found several issues with traditional water dispensers, from hygiene, user experience, and sustainability, to re-ordering and storage of water,” says The Well Water’s CEO David Albers. “Taking a holistic approach, we’ve used these insights to improve every aspect of water dispensing.
“The core innovation is the move from bottles to boxes. It sounds like a small step but it’s truly revolutionary in the Home Office Delivered (HOD) market space. By moving away from plastic bottled water, the whole ‘game’ changes. No longer is a home or office cooler provided mainly by ‘specialist’ water providers who need fleets of purpose-build vans, trucks, racks and sanitising personnel in the never-ending attempt to keep dispensers in a sanitary condition.
“Boxed water dramatically improves storage, enabling bigger and more profitable deliveries. Manual handling issues are a thing of the past, and the latest in low-impact refrigeration is leading the way in moving away from older ozone-depleting technologies. Critically the cloud connectivity and built-in intelligence of the machines allow for smart distribution and demand-led delivery (as against just pre-scheduled route delivery). The net impact is a solution that is set to transform the water cooler market.”
The stylish, black unit is split into two parts: the top section is the cooler; and the bottom section provides storage with the connected weighing platform. The top section can be used alone as a counter-top dispenser. This modular thinking has allowed for a countertop version for premises that don’t have the space available for a freestanding machine. An illuminated front screen can be customised with a message or customer logo.
“Every box has its own tap, guaranteeing clean and uncontaminated water with every pour, with no water left to stagnate in the chambers of the machine,” says David Albers. “An innovative new mechanism has been designed and engineered to ensure the machine never touches the water, making the passage from box to cup more hygienic than traditional coolers.
“Boxed water is lighter than traditional bottles, and the packaging is rectangular rather than cylindrical, making it far easier and more efficient to store and transport. Goods inwards storage areas are cut by over 80% and goods outwards by over 33.33%, while truck movements for equivalent quantities of water are reduced by over 60%. The lighter boxes also reduce any ergonomic risks to employees and, when empty, the boxes can be folded and entered straight into recycling streams.”
Benefits for Facilities Managers
The Well Water delivers the most cost-effective hydration solution for facilities managers, removing the need for servicing and sanitisation and improving security by reducing the number of visits to premises required by water delivery, servicing, and sanitisation technicians by 65%.
“The crazy thing is that our system provided complete peace of mind in regard to the hygienic state of the dispensers – and yet completely does away with the requirements for staff being employed for sanitisation,” says Kieran McKenna. “We call it ‘Purity by design’.”
The Well Water does not require servicing or sanitisation as the box never touches the dispenser, never sees the light and never has any contaminated office air bubbling up to equalise pressure. Once the box is empty, it can simply be recycled, further reducing manpower, cost and inconvenience.
“The Well Water removes the need for the storage and use of cleaning chemicals to deliver safe hydration in premises,” says Kieran McKenna. “The Well Water just makes sense on a practical, hygienic, environmental cost and convenience level.”
The hassle of constantly ordering new bottles is avoided with the use of smart technology. David Albers explains: “Once you’re low on water, new boxes are dispatched and delivered, so you never run out. This saves admin staff time in organizing new deliveries and means there will be a constant flow of water in the workplace.
“The Well Water is an innovative, rebel solution which is set to disrupt the water cooler market by meeting modern standards of hygiene, flexibility and overall product experience.”
Facilities Managers wishing to discover more about The Well Water and its benefits, or re-sellers interested in becoming a distributor for The Well Water should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.