Reefill is a solution to the economic and environmental problems caused by bottled water and unrecyclable bottle caps and aims to reduce the 38 billion plastic water bottles that Americans send to our landfills and oceans each year. Today, if consumers want water on the go, their only option is to purchase a $2 single-use bottled water. But this $2 product is often just glorified tap water and has an enormous negative impact on the environment. Reefill provides unlimited and convenient access to tap water free of charge, and for those who crave cold, filtered water (similar to bottled water), Reefill customers can get unlimited and convenient access for an entire month for the cost of just one bottled water
Reefill is a dense network of tap water refill stations in urban areas where consumers can conveniently fill their reusable bottles on the go. Using the Reefill app, consumers find the nearest station, which are in local businesses, such as coffee shops and bakeries. They can then fill up with tap water at no cost or, if they pay a $1.99 monthly fee, use the app to activate the station’s cold, filtered water dispenser via Bluetooth and fill their bottle in seconds. Paying members can also take advantage of the Reefill app’s additional features, such as tracking water consumed and the amount of money and plastic bottles they have saved as well as receiving discounts from participating businesses. And with each use by a paying member, safe water is provided to someone in the developing world through our partnership with Water.org. Reefill stations are equipped to dispense carbonated water as well which will allow for additional significant reductions in single use plastic bottle waste.
The businesses that serve as water station hosts are enthusiastic about the increased foot traffic and free advertising. Neighboring businesses already host ATM and lottery machines to drive foot traffic and Reefill provides similar benefits. The Reefill stations are installed by professionals at no cost to the local business, and Reefill provides all maintenance. Stations are cleaned by Reefill personnel regularly and are equipped with UV sanitization, which kills germs and bacteria in the dispensing area. Aside from minimal space requirements (units are located on countertops or mounted to walls), local businesses have no costs associated with participation in the network.
In late 2016, Reefill launched a pilot network around New York University, which provided grant funding and has purchased memberships for the 2017 incoming freshmen. Reefill recently launched a crowdfunding campaign and pre-sold $34,000 in memberships to a future NYC network. The campaign generated substantial media interest, including a NowThis News piece (goo.gl/xkL8Cz) that got over 2.7 million views. Reefill won first place and a $15,000 prize in the 2016 New York StartUp! Competition, run by the New York Public Library and Citi Foundation, took part in Think Beyond Plastic’s 2015 accelerator class, is an affiliate company of the XRC Labs accelerator, and is currently incubated at 1776's Brooklyn campus.