All reusable bottles share one very common trait, and that is an old, funky smell that comes out of them. It makes it highly undesirable to drink water from these bottles.
A reusable water bottle has a lot of bacteria growing in it, which is the main cause of this smell. This makes people prefer to use single-use plastic bottles that can be thrown away after just one use.
Disposable plastic bottles are one of the greatest factors that lead to land and sea pollution, and young entrepreneur, Justin Wang, aims to eliminate this increased use of plastic through his Larq water bottles.
What Do They Make?
Larq water bottles claim to be the first water bottles to have a self-cleaning technology. They can purify the water on their own with a simple press of a button. In just 60 seconds, the UV-C LED technology used in Larq gets rid of bacteria, viruses, and molds, leaving a fresh and odor-free water bottle behind.
There are two modes of the Larq water bottle purifying system: normal and venture. The normal mode takes 60 seconds to purify the water bottle, and the venture mode takes 3 minutes to purify the water.
The extreme purification system makes it equivalent to boiling the same water for 20 minutes.
What Makes Them Unique?
The Larq bottles contain a UV-C LED technology that can eradicate almost 99.99% of bacteria commonly found in a water bottle. The PureVis™ technology brilliantly cleans the inside of the water bottle and eradicates and neutralizes even the toughest bacteria like E-Coli.
The reflective optical system is specifically designed to bounce off the UV rays coming from the top of the bottle throughout the inside so that it reaches every part of the water bottle.
Are They Still an Active Company?
Larq is also moving towards other products besides the water bottle. The Larq pitcher is different from traditional pitchers that only trap contaminants rather than eliminate them, which can cause contamination in itself. There is a two-step process involved that captures contaminants like lead and cadmium and then eliminates those using UV rays.
How Did the Shark Tank Pitch Go?
Justin Wang entered Shark Tank seeking $500K for 1% equity of his business. Justin explained how a reusable water bottle contains more bacteria than a dog’s food bowl. His high-tech water bottle, Larq, can eliminate more than 99.99% of germs and bacteria that grow in a water bottle.
Kevin and Robert were baffled by the highest valuation ever requested on Shark Tank.
Daymond chimed in and said that he was already using a couple of Larq water bottles, but Robert wanted to know the market value of this high-technology bottle.
Justin responded that the water bottle market is huge and equals approximately $300 billion dollars. Out of which, only 7% share is taken up by reusable water bottles. This is why this market is growing, and the valuation demand that Justin presented is justified.
Lori asked Justin to explain how the UV-C LED system of his water bottle purifies and disinfects the water. Justin explained that his co-founder, who had a Ph.D. in physics, helped him design this water bottle. The UV LED on the top of the water bottle is bounced throughout the internal surface using the reflective optical system. The result is purified and germ-free water that is as healthy as boiling water for 20 minutes.
Lori again inquired about the competition in market and if Larq was the only brand that was using UV technology. Justin replied that they were the first in the market using UV technology in water bottles, and they had about 10 patents of utility and design around the product.
The company was pursuing legal action against other brands that were trying to copy their product design and business model.
The product was launched in 2018, and in 2019, it made over $5.5 million in sales. In the last 12 months, the sales had gone up to $9 million. They were hoping to make $14 million in the present year.
Kevin asked him about the profits, and Justin revealed that they had recently brought a venture capital round in January and were expecting to lose about a million dollars that year.
They raised $6.7 million at a $31.7 million valuation. He had approximately $6.5 million in the bank.
Daymond commented that the expensive Larq bottle wouldn’t cater to people not having access to clean water or those not having access to electricity.
Justin revealed that 1% of their gross revenues go to 1% For The Planet, which was their charity partner.
The Sharks were impressed that Justin was true to the cause of Larq, but Daymond was the first Shark to go out.
Kevin said that he supported a charity called One-Drop, and he would very much like to get behind the cause that Larq supports. But he wasn’t interested in doing that for just 1% equity since he would bring a lot of value to the company.
Kevin would do this deal for 4% equity. Lori agreed that the Sharks deserved a better equity percentage if they were investing half a million dollars in Justin’s company.
Robert also agreed that the odds were too low and offered $500K for 3% equity, with 2% advisory shares.
Justin made a counter offer, asking all the three Sharks to team up and invest $500K each for 4.5% equity and 1% advisory shares. At this, Robert backed out.
After further negotiation, Justin offered $1 million for a 4% split between Kevin and Lori, to which they both agreed.
Our Review of Larq
Larq is an excellent option to consider when traveling to an area where clean and healthy drinking water is not guaranteed. It can also be used while camping and going on picnics.
Pros of Larq
- A reusable water bottle that eliminates bacteria and viruses
- Sleek and elegant design
- Perfect for camping and hiking.
Cons of Larq
- The bottle is really expensive
- If the UV technology system doesn’t work for some reason, the bottle gets completely useless.
Who Is Larq For?
Reusable water bottles are always bought in a frenzy when people are adamant about reducing plastic waste and getting rid of single-use plastic bottles. However, as time passes, they would grow stinky and get mold growth, and as a result, sit uselessly in a gym bag or a car’s storage pocket. This is why Larq’s self-cleaning technology is perfect for using these bottles for longer, without them growing stinky or dirty.
Are There Any Alternatives?
- GlobalWAKEcup Self Cleaning UV Water Bottle
- UVBrite Go Self-Cleaning UV Water Bottle
Our Final Thoughts:
Justin claims that there are no alternatives to the technology that is being used in Larq, but there are several brands that are using similar techniques to prepare self-cleaning bottles. It’s only a matter of time to see what will be the future of Larq.