Ideal Founder Series 003
Daniel Hill, Co-founder & CEO, Mark Chang, Co-founder & CTO of AQUIVIO
Mar 31, 2023
《Embrace the difficulties, and be the change》
身為一位前任健美世界冠軍，過往的訓練以及 Daniel 在機能性食品、飲水領域的專業，讓Daniel了解鹼性氫氣水的重要性。但同時 Daniel 也深知機能氫氣水的取得是多麽的不易。面對鹼性水的的高昂價格，以及潛在的容器浪費，Daniel決定成為自己希望看到的改變，AQUIVIO也因此誕生。
如同他的座右銘所說 "If you think we can't change the world, it just means you're not one of those that will" - Jacque Fresco
As a former world bodybuilding champion, Daniel's past training and expertise in functional foods and water made him realize the importance of alkaline hydrogen water. At the same time, Daniel knew how difficult it was to obtain functional hydrogen water. Faced with the high cost of alkaline water and the potential container waste, Daniel decided to be the changing force he long anticipated, and thus, AQUIVIO was born.
Just as his motto says, "If you think we can't change the world, it just means you're not one of those that will" - Jacque Fresco.
Q. 請用三個詞形容你自己 / Use three words to describe yourself
Friendship, Love, Truth
Q. 如果你沒有開始你的事業，現在的你會在做什麼呢? / If you weren’t building your startup, what would you be doing?
Following the road less taken!
Q. 在創業的過程中，你面對最艱難的挑戰是什麼 ? / What significant challenges have you faced when working on this company?
It’s been full of surprises along the way, and all of these will become our nourishment. These challenges and problems provide us with different perspectives and insights, while also making our startup more mature and valuable. Try to enjoy these challenges and step out of your comfort zone.
Take me as an example, combining expertise from three different technical fields and pushing them to the market at the same time is an incredibly difficult challenge. As the plans for developing overseas markets gradually mature, AQUIVIO will face more and more challenges. That's why founders need to learn to enjoy the process, keep learning, and embrace challenges - that's the toughest challenge of all!
Q. 如果在創業過程中你可以做一件事情不同的事，那會是什麼? / If you could have done one thing differently while building your startup, what would it be?
When facing technical challenges, try to find solutions on your own or work together with your team. Don't invest time in outsourcing these technical tasks; it's only by bravely facing challenges that you can grow and improve yourself!
Q. 你是怎麼衡量你的成功? 你衡量的標準是什麼? / At the moment, how do you measure success? What are your metrics?
Our primary metric is “Monthly Recurring Revenue”, while we keep track of “Monthly Active Users” and also conversion rates from freemium to paid subscribers.
Q. 你會對其他的有野心和熱情的創業家說什麼? / What would you tell aspiring startup founders?
Success is actually a much longer process than you thought. Someday when you finally make it to where you want, you will be surprised but proud that you’ve spent so much time and effort when you look back.
Q. AQUIVIO 是誰? / Who isAQUIVIO?
Users can obtain healthy functional water rich in various nutrients and vitamins through the AQUIVIO hydration machine. AQUIVIO reduces container waste associated with traditional alkaline water sales by offering water refills. While cutting down on plastic wastes, it also provides high-quality alkaline water to consumers at a price 30% lower.
AQUIVIO aims to replace traditional water dispensers and provide healthier drinking water & beverages to users in gyms, offices, and public spaces. We also hope to generate additional revenue for the places where their machines are installed, turning water refills from a cost center service into a profit center service.
Q. 用幾句話說明你的公司還有你要解決的問題 / What is your company and problems you are addressing in a few sentences?
飲水機是個民生必需的設備，美國擁有超過一千萬台的飲水機，我們也預估這個數字將會在2030年翻倍。然而多數場域的飲水機只能為民眾提供一般的飲用水，而且也無法為場域擁有者帶來實際收益。我們希望 AQUIVIO 可以為民眾以及進駐場域都帶來益處。
Water dispensers are essential in everyday life, with over 10 million units in the United States alone. We expect this number to double by 2030. However, most water dispensers in public spaces only provide regular drinking water and don't generate tangible benefits for venue owners. We hope AQUIVIO can bring benefits to both the public and the venue.
Q. 用簡單的句子形容，你能為誰提供什麼服務 / 產品? / In a few sentences, what do you offer and to whom?
AQUIVIO provides a healthier and more environmentally friendly hydration option for end-users in offices, gyms, and public spaces. At the same time, it generates additional revenue for venue owners, ultimately creating a win-win situation for every stakeholder.
Q. 為什麼現在是你的公司存在的時間點? / Why is now the time for your company to exist?
民眾對健康飲品的需求逐漸上升，而機能水提供場域也預估將在2025前上升到 224.9 億美元的市場，同時擁有著11.1%的年均複合成長率。我們相信藉由為使用者帶來更聰明、更符合使用者需求的補水新體驗，同時為場域擁有者帶來全新收益模式，AQUIVIO 將能夠在這擁有龐大潛力的市場中站穩我們的腳步！
As the demand for healthy beverages continues to rise, the market of functional beverage space is expected to reach $224.9 billion by 2027 at a CAGR of 11.1%. We believe that by offering users a smarter and more tailored hydration experience, while introducing a new revenue model for venue owners, AQUIVIO will be able to come in strong in this market with immense potential!
Q. 和我們分享目前為止，關於你的產品 / 服務受市場歡迎的吸引力是什麼 ? / What’s most exciting about your traction to date?
We’ve signed 5 pilot agreements now and one of which is a leading Taiwan gym chain.
Q. 你認為在今年你的成長里程碑會是什麼 ? / Where do you think your growth and milestones will be for 2023? (Short term)
We hope that our operations in Taiwan will start generating profits for the company and, at the same time, prepare us for entering the US market and securing seed round investments.
Q. 目前你的公司正在尋找什麼? (例如:資金、新市場擴張、人才?) / What would be the 3 things that your company is looking for now? (e.g. Funding, new market expansion, new hires?)
We hope to find 3-4 partners in Taiwan who can work together to make AQUIVIO even better, and we plan to bring AQUIVIO to the US market before the second quarter of 2023.
Meet The Team
Q. 你有團隊嗎? 請介紹一下團隊成員，以及你是如何找到他們並且建立現在的團隊? / Do you have a team? If yes, who are they, and how did you go about building your team?
我們的團隊在營養學及健康方面都有豐富的經驗，我除了曾經獲得世界健美比賽冠軍，現在也擁有正在等待專利申請的新型水處理技術。而我的共同創辦人 - Mark，在設計、生產、和軟體方面都有著七年的深厚基礎。
Our team has extensive experience in nutrition and health. Besides being a former world bodybuilding champion, I also have a new water treatment technology pending patent approval. My co-founder, Mark, has 7 years of Product Dev experience.
With these backgrounds, we are fortunate to have the ability to tackle the technical challenges in all three key areas of AQUIVIO: IoT hardware, software, and the development of nutritional beverages!
2. Do you have a team? If yes, who are they and how did you go about building your team?
我和 Mark 並非一開始就是生意夥伴，起初就是朋友，但隨著時間的推進，我們一點一滴地為AQUIVIO這個想法一起努力，我們的團隊才漸漸出現了雛形。
Mark and I didn't start as business partners; we were friends first. As time went on, we worked together bit by bit on the idea of AQUIVIO, and our team gradually came together.
Finding the right partner is a difficult task. You need to go through actual collaboration experiences to have the chance to validate your ideas and decisions and put yourself in a position to find the right partner.
Ｑ. 你會如何和其他新創公司的創辦人分享你的經驗和感想，關於成為理想Ideal 社群中的一員？ / What would you tell other startup founders about being part of the Ideal community and your experience here?
和Darren以及他的團隊工作是件愉快的事情。Ideal Space 是個非常適合召開會議或是接待潛在客戶的地方，在這邊可以感受到整個 Ideal 團隊的緊密支持，這是在一般共享空間很難找到的氛圍和環境，如果有機會可以來 Ideal Venture Studio 了解更多！
Working with Darren and his team has been a pleasure experience. Ideal Venture Studio is a perfect place for hosting meetings or welcoming potential clients. Here, you can feel the close-knit support of the entire Ideal team, which is an atmosphere and environment that is hard to find in typical co-working spaces. If you get the chance, come to Ideal Venture Studio to learn more!