31 October 2017
The Hydranome® bottle is a product to be proud of. This beautifully designed water bottle helps people drink enough water and live a healthier life. Rompa developed and produced the bottle’s complex cap. What is the story behind this remarkable bottle? Fred Housheer, founder of Hydranome®, explains the innovative idea, the development of the product and the collaboration with Rompa.
Why a smart water bottle?
“As marketing director coffee and Senseo at Philips, I conducted a lot of research into what people drink. I noticed a remarkable trend: people are drinking more and more sugary drinks. However, drinking soda and fruit juice contributes to the development of health problems such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. If you are thirsty, it is tempting to grab a sugary drink. I wanted to do something about this. The solution? Drink enough water and do so on time. We translated this idea into an innovative product: the Hydranome® bottle.”
How does the Hydranome® bottle work?
“It is a reusable bottle that helps you drink enough water on a daily basis. For women, the recommended daily intake is 1.6 litres, for men 2 litres. The smart cap helps you track how much you drink. You can easily tell how much you already drank that day and if you are meeting the recommended daily intake by looking at the number of dots on the cap.”
Let’s go back to the development and production process: how did you first meet Rompa?
“Once we were happy with the design, we found a Dutch organisation that could produce the water container for us. We were also looking for a partner to produce the complex cap, preferably a Dutch organisation that offered injection moulding and had experience with difficult and complex products. I consulted my old network from my days at Philips and looked for suitable partners at tradeshows. We turned a longlist into a shortlist based on several criteria, including competence, technological know-how, flexibility and reputation. Rompa eventually proved to be the ideal partner for us. They left the best impression. Together with the company that produces the bottle itself, we organised a kick-off session. That was important, because everything does have to fit together at the end of the day. It was a challenging process; you will inevitably run into issues you overlooked, while things you did think of prove to be unfeasible in practice. That sends you right back to the drawing board. All in all, the process took a bit longer than we hoped, but it was important to develop a high-quality product.”
How was the collaboration with Rompa?
“As I mentioned, it was an exciting project. In situations like that, it is important to constantly think ahead and keep working together closely. I want to give my compliments to Rompa’s team for this. Project Manager Leon Brands and the entire project team worked very hard. Right at the start of the project, Rompa said: ‘If it comes down to it, we will work into the night.’ That is exactly what happened. I once called Leon at 8 AM on a Sunday morning, because a component had been delivered to him on Saturday that needed feedback quickly. Leon did what was asked of him, while his family was waiting to go to a theme park. That shows real commitment! I believe that is what truly sets Rompa apart from other parties: their commitment to the client. Rompa is an organisation with short, direct lines of communication. One of the first times I visited the company, I met CEO Patrick Gérard. He was curious about our product and said: ‘We do not work exclusively with major parties; we also want to support smaller initiatives. Here is my card.’ I could not be happier about that level of involvement. Rompa is a professional organisation with a wealth of knowledge and plenty of flexibility. They created exactly what we wanted.”
In a nutshell: what makes the Hydranome® bottle unique?
“Our basic principle was a concrete problem among consumers. We wanted to solve this problem, so we actively involved the end users in the entire development process. We wanted to achieve the best possible result, without compromising the product’s appearance or quality. Because of our collaboration with experienced and professional partners such as Rompa, we were able to make a top-quality product.”