Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Great Snowboard Water (bottle) Fight

Here's a strange little product war currently raging in the world of professional snowboarding...

Water is currently without a doubt the most fashionable drinking liquid in snowboarding.

A few years ago two pro snowboarders, Bryan Fox and Austin Smith, created Drink Water as a way of opposing the influence of energy drinks in snowboarding.

Over time they've managed to build that protest out into a whole business. They've also got a roster of pro snowboarders supporting them, at least until one of the energy drinks offers them a good deal, because let's be honest, there's no way to refuse them...

The next problem for fashionable snowboarders is the carriage of their preferred drinking liquid. The existing myriad of liquid containers are not ethical enough so there was an opportunity to produce more sustainable bottles. The early mover in this market was another pro snowboarder, Jussi Oksanen who started a bottle company called Mizu...

Pro snowboarder to scale

They now sell an array of bottles which range in price from $19 to £34 and they've also rustled up a team of professional snowboarders.

And now another set of pro snowboarders are trying to elbow their way in on the action. Gretchen Bleiler and her husband, Chris Hotell are busy relaunching their bottle company Alex on Kickstarter as we type.

Gretchen and Chris, looking the same, dressing the same, and enjoying some shared bathroom time.

Here's a video of them introducing their slightly different bottle as they crimp one out.

I'm not sure what happened to that business the first time and why it needs a relaunch, but if you fancy one of their bottles they're going for $20 a pop.

So now we have the very strange situation where we have two pro-snowboarder run companies, selling expensive water bottles, and fighting it out for a share of a very niche market. The battle is on.

Also Drink Water have their own bottle for $30

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