The eight-year-old, Burlingame, California-based company FloWater, which uses reusable water bottle refilling stations to produce purified water, raised $15 million in its first major round of funding. Bluewater, a Swedish company that sells water purifiers, in addition to other items, led the round.
Water purifies are beginning to emerge in many places, meanwhile FloWater caters to schools, colleges, fitness centers, hotels and offices. CEO Rich Razgaitis plans to address environmental issues from the outset, including obesity in the U.S., the 40 billion single-use plastic water bottles that are used and then tossed to the side every year, millions of barrels of oil, in addition to the hundreds of millions of pounds of CO2 byproduct waste used to create and transport bottled water, and the toxins that are in single-use plastic bottles.
Razgaitis makes quite the compelling case, which clearly persuaded 13 investors in total to write checks to the company, as a new SEC filing reports. According to the company’s founder, Wyatt Taubman, it all begun with an $18,600 bank loan. Taubman says he used the bank loan to launch a pilot refill station, per his LinkedIn, before collecting another $125,000 from friends and family, in addition to a second loan of $62,000 to launch more refill stations.
The company later raised $950,000 from the Tech Coast Angels and the Hawaii Angels, which hired Razgaitis, redesigned the look of its product and raised $2.6 million in Series A funding in 2016. Some of FloWater’s customers include Google, Airbnb, Specialized Bikes and Red Bull. The company reports that its stations are now located in nearly all 50 states.