DrinkPrime - Disrupting Water Purification Industry With IoT-Enabled Water Purifiers

Preeti Karna Preeti Karna
Jul 14, 2022 11 min read
DrinkPrime - Disrupting Water Purification Industry With IoT-Enabled Water Purifiers

Company Profile is an initiative by StartupTalky to publish verified information on different startups and organizations. The content in this post has been approved by DrinkPrime.

The Water Industry in India is embracing several changes since years. Growing health awareness and rapid urbanisation has led to rising customer demands for purified water. Still, only half of the Indian population have access to safe & pure drinking water. Water treatment industry lacks behind making drinking water available to every individual in India. Water treatment Market was valued at $2 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach $4 billion by 2029. With the use of technological developments in water treatment, high-quality drinking water can be supplied and enjoyed all around.

The use of Internet of Things (IoT) technology is not only helping to better manage infrastructure, but with IoT-enabled customized water purifiers, DrinkPrime is creating a huge impact in the Water industry. DrinkPrime is on a mission to provide access to safe & healthy drinking water to all.

Know more about DrinkPrime, its founders, business model, and marketing strategy. Read to discover how DrinkPrime is helping people to get access to clean water with its tailored solution depending on the input water quality reaching their home.

DrinkPrime - Company Highlights

Startup Name DrinkPrime
Headquarters Bengaluru, Karnataka
Industry Water Purification
Founders Vijender Reddy Muthyala and Manas Ranjan Hota
Founded 2016
Total Funding Raised ₹35 Crore
Website drinkprime.in

DrinkPrime - About
DrinkPrime - Industry
DrinkPrime - Founders and Team
DrinkPrime - The Idea and Startup Story
DrinkPrime - Name, Tagline, and Logo
DrinkPrime - Products
DrinkPrime - Business Model and Revenue Model
DrinkPrime - Customer Acquisition
DrinkPrime - Challenges Faced
DrinkPrime - Marketing Strategy
DrinkPrime - Growth
DrinkPrime - Funding
DrinkPrime - Advisors
DrinkPrime - Competitors
DrinkPrime - Tools Used in the Company
DrinkPrime - Recognition and Achievements
DrinkPrime - Future Plans

DrinkPrime - About

DrinkPrime is disrupting the 30-year-old water purifier market by making clean, safe and healthy drinking water accessible and affordable to all. Less than 50% of the Indian population has access to safe drinking water and 85% of the water in 20-litre cans is not fit for consumption. By providing customized water purifiers on subscription, DrinkPrime brings the best of both worlds - the affordability of water cans and the expected water quality from a water purifier.

Unlike traditional water purifiers, DrinkPrime does not have a purchase, installation or maintenance charge, thus making it cost-effective and affordable. With its strong reliance on technology, there is real time monitoring of water and a proactive schedule of maintenance checks, making it a hassle-free experience for the end user.

They believe in making safe drinking water accessible and affordable to all Indians. They serve 1 lakh+ users and aim to provide safe drinking water to 1 million homes in the next five years.

DrinkPrime - Industry

The water purifier market in India stands at about $754.2 million in 2020. Every year, just close to 20 lakh water purifiers get sold. This includes both branded and non-branded water purifiers. And every five to six years, the quality of water keeps deteriorating. This means that consumers have to upgrade their water purifiers every 5 years.

If you consider the five-year time period, close to just 1 crore households would have a water purifier. This means that, out of 25 crore households in India, less than 5% of households will have access to a water purifier. If you extrapolate it to the population level, you will realise that less than 5% of the people in India have access to water purifiers.

DrinkPrime is not a part of the 30-year-old water purifier industry, they are disrupting the market by making customized water purifiers affordable and accessible to everyone. They are the market leaders in Bengaluru with 6000 installations every month whereas other water purifier seller brands make about 2000 sales on a monthly basis.

DrinkPrime - Founders and Team

DrinkPrime Founders
DrinkPrime Founders

Vijender Reddy Muthyala and Manas Ranjan Hota were roommates in Bengaluru when they came up with the idea for DrinkPrime. While Vijender is an Indian Institute of Science (IISc) alumni with a master’s degree in computer science and automation, compiler design, Manas is a Pondicherry University alumni with a master of business administration (MBA) degree.

Being the Co-founder and CEO of DrinkPrime, Vijender focuses on the roadmap for DrinkPrime and product innovation. Whereas Manas, Co-founder and COO, is focused on getting things done - he manages day-to-day operations to make sure that the company is achieving the set targets and milestones.

The DrinkPrime team has grown over the past six years. They are present in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Delhi NCR and have about 250 members. They are hiring aggressively and are looking to add more people across teams - Sales, Operations, Product and Technology, Management, Finance, Collections and Marketing.

DrinkPrime is a young startup that scaled up quickly and this growth can be attributed to the attitude of the people who work at the company. People at DrinkPrime take ownership of what they do. Everyone who joins DrinkPrime believes in the mission - providing clean, safe and healthy drinking water to all - and is ready to get things done! This attitude has helped build a fun and highly motivated culture of high achievers.

DrinkPrime - The Idea and Startup Story

When Vijender Reddy Muthyala and Manas Ranjan Hota, the Co-founders of DrinkPrime, moved to Bengaluru they resided in an apartment where they were unsure about the quality of water. They conducted some research and realised that the majority of the people, just like them, depended on water cans. But 85% of the water in water cans is not fit for consumption. Moreover, the water purifier penetration in India is less than 5% while TV penetration is more than 70%. This astonishing discovery led them to question the rationale behind the existing water purifiers in the market. The current brands, which were a one-size-fit-all model, weren’t looking at the water that was entering the home, it only focused on the output. This also meant that the water could still be contaminated or there would be a loss of required nutrients and minerals as the input water factors were not being considered.

DrinkPrime was conceptualised to tackle this problem, where the input water was analysed before suggesting the type of purifier that needs to be installed in homes. It was a tailored solution for each home based on the type of water.


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DrinkPrime Logo
DrinkPrime Logo

DrinkPrime means exactly what the company stands for - drink the best. However, there is an interesting story behind the origin of the startup name - the interest that the co-founders had in Optimus Prime, the fictional character created by the Transformers franchise. Optimus Prime is a perfect synergy of biological evolution and technological engineering. They can easily draw a parallel between this and DrinkPrime - a perfect synergy of product evolution and technological engineering.

DrinkPrime - Products

DrinkPrime comprises IoT technology that assesses the input-output water supply. This is also their biggest USP as they have been able to customize each water purifier based on input water quality. When customers subscribe to DrinkPrime, they install a water purifier uniquely customised based on 3 major factors- TDS (Total Dissolved Solids), turbidity, and chloride level. Output water quality is then tested to ensure it is never over or under-purified.

If the input water quality has a TDS of 0-300 PPM, turbidity greater than 1 NTU and chloride levels are greater than 50 PPM, the water purifier would come with Food-Grade Polypropylene Yarn Wound Sediment Filter, Coconut Shell Activated Carbon Block, Low TDS Reduction RO Membrane for Chemical & Microbial Contaminant Removal, Bacteriostatic Silver Impregnated Post Carbon Filter.

The custom-made sediment filter is made to ensure that it removes even the smallest suspended matter so the output water is clear and pure.

If the input water quality has a TDS between 300 and 500 PPM, turbidity and chloride greater than 1 NTU and 50 PPM respectively, the water purifier is constituted with Food-Grade Polypropylene Yarn Wound Sediment Filter, Coconut Shell Activated Carbon Block, Low TDS Reduction RO Membrane for Chemical & Microbial Contaminant Removal, Bacteriostatic Silver Impregnated Post Carbon Filter.

If the input water has a TDS greater than 500 PM, turbidity that is more than 1 NTU and chloride levels greater than 50 PPM, the purifier would come with Food-Grade Polypropylene Yarn Wound Sediment Filter, Coconut Shell Activated Carbon Block, Low TDS Reduction RO Membrane for Chemical & Microbial Contaminant Removal and Bacteriostatic Silver Impregnated Post Carbon Filter.

If the input water has a TDS greater than 500 PM, turbidity that is more than 1 NTU and chloride levels lesser than 50 PPM, the product would comprise of 100% Cotton Yarn Sediment Filter + Pre Carbon Block with Organic Activated Charcoal + Chemical Free RO Membrane with Germs Remover + Silver Impregnated Post Carbon Filter.

There were 3 stages to DrinkPrime’s journey; they started with an organisation called Waterwala, which provided certified canned water to customers. DrinkPrime was able to capture 20000 customers but due to scalability issues, they evolved and came up with a customised water purifier. Post this in 2016, DrinkPrime was born with the ideology of consumers paying only for the amount of water they consume.

DrinkPrime - Business Model and Revenue Model

Unlike traditional water purifiers, you don’t have to make an upfront investment to get DrinkPrime. All you need to do is choose the most suitable subscription plan. DrinkPrime offers free delivery, installation, lifetime maintenance, filter changes and relocation. DrinkPrime’s subscription plans start at Rs 339/month.

DrinkPrime - Customer Acquisition

DrinkPrime was the first brand to provide water purifiers on subscription in India. The idea of getting anything on subscription itself was a fairly new concept. Initially, the DrinkPrime co-founders’ friends and family members subscribed to DrinkPrime. This helped them understand the impact of providing a water purifier on subscription and to analyse the working of the product on a daily basis. Here’s what happened - the users were happy with the product and the convenience it offered, leading them to refer their friends and family members to DrinkPrime. That’s how the DrinkPrime family grew in the initial days. Currently, 1 lakh+ users trust DrinkPrime to provide them with clean, safe and healthy drinking water every day.

In an entirely service-oriented industry like DrinkPrime’s, there’s nothing or no one else who can help them grow other than their subscribers. They are proud that about 28% of their new subscribers join them via referrals from their existing subscribers who trust them with their daily drinking water. About 11% of their subscribers happily refer people they know to DrinkPrime on a monthly basis. But they don’t let their subscribers go empty-handed. They receive rewards for every successful referral and this has been helping them reach more people.

DrinkPrime - Challenges Faced

When COVID-19 hit India, people and several companies were worried about transitioning from working out of the offices to working from home. But DrinkPrime belongs to the essential services category; They were more concerned about ensuring safe drinking water to its subscribers during the difficult time.

Here’s what they did - they got special permission from the government of India to ensure there was no delay in DrinkPrime delivery, installation, and service. Their delivery partners and technicians stood by them and were ready to serve their subscribers. They ensured their safety by providing them with all the necessary training in safety protocols and by giving them the required safety kits. The initial period of COVID-19 was a challenge because nobody knew what to expect the next day. DrinkPrime team took it one day at a time but decided to take the challenge head-on; they expanded to Hyderabad and Delhi NCR in 2020-2021 to provide safe drinking water access to more people.

DrinkPrime - Marketing Strategy

The majority of the people in India depend on 20-litre water cans for their daily drinking water. However, the hassles associated with getting water cans delivered home is unlike anything else. We’ve even had their subscribers say that they have had to carry water cans up the stairs, this was even more prevalent during the initial phase of the COVID-19 pandemic.

They understood that this was a major pain point for the majority of their potential subscribers. To reach out to them, they ran ad campaigns with a creative that was extremely relatable to the target audience - A person carrying a Water CAN up the stairs in pain. The campaign worked well for them because it hit a major pain point. The campaign itself was so successful that DrinkPrime competitors have since replicated it.


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DrinkPrime - Growth

DrinkPrime was launched in Bengaluru in 2016. In 2020, the company expanded to Hyderabad and in 2021, they expanded to Delhi NCR (Delhi, Faridabad, Ghaziabad, Gurgaon and Noida) to provide safe drinking water access to more people. DrinkPrime currently serves 1 lakh+ users across seven cities in India and is the leading water purifier brand in Bengaluru.

The company has been growing over the years and witnessed a 330% growth in the last six months. The number of employees working directly with the company has increased more than 30% since November 2021.

Currently, DrinkPrime has partnered with close to 100 companies. The list includes myGate, ADDA, Bounce, COLIVE, Edelweiss, Nestaway, MTR, L&T Realty, Nexus Ventures and Partners and Target.

In the next five years, DrinkPrime aims to provide safe drinking water access to 1 million households in India.

DrinkPrime - Funding

Date Stage Amount Investors
2021 Debt Financing ₹8 crore UC Inclusive Credit and Western Capital
2020 Venture Debt ₹6 crore Alteria Capital
2020 Pre Series A ₹21 crore Omidyar Network India and Sequoia Surge

DrinkPrime utilized the funds to strengthen the team across cities. The funds have also helped in getting DrinkPrime to more households in India and to keep providing a hassle-free experience for the subscribers.

DrinkPrime - Advisors

DrinkPrime has several mentors who’ve understood the value of the brand and service. There are several mentors who have become investors in the company.

DrinkPrime - Competitors

DrinkPrime offers IoT-enabled customized water purifiers on subscription. Currently, there is no other brand that offers the product/service.

DrinkPrime - Tools Used in the Company

The primary tool they require at DrinkPrime is DrinkPrime mobile app. Their mobile app that is in sync with the water purifier helps their subscribers have complete control over their drinking water. While the first few water purifiers were GSM-enabled, the latest version of DrinkPrime syncs with the mobile app via Bluetooth.

Internally, they use other tools such as:

Another important tool is the mobile app we’ve built for their delivery partners and technicians. Service is at the core of DrinkPrime and the app helps them ensure their subscribers get the required service on time.

DrinkPrime - Recognition and Achievements

They believe that there’s no bigger award than having 1 lakh+ trust them with their drinking water. However, they have received accolades - Forbes Asia 100 To Watch and Fast Company’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies!

DrinkPrime - Future Plans

They are constantly innovating their product to ensure that they make their subscribers’ lives even easier. They are currently working on a water purifier model that will help reduce their involvement once the water purifier is installed in a subscriber’s home. This will give DrinkPrime subscribers even more control over their drinking water.

For the next five years, their focus will be on providing safe drinking water access to a million subscribers.

FAQs

When was DrinkPrime founded?

DrinkPrime was founded in 2016.

Who is the founder of DrinkPrime?

Manas Ranjan Hota is the founder of DrinkPrime.

Has DrinkPrime raised Funding?

DrinkPrime has raised funding of ₹35 Crore.

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