Rob Koenen is a seasoned executive with over 25 years of experience in sales and marketing, currently serving as the Chief Revenue Officer at Boxed Water Is Better®. With a successful track record of driving growth and expanding revenue streams, Koenen has played an integral role in positioning Boxed Water as a leader in sustainable packaging solutions. DeliveryRank explores how his expertise has helped shape the success of Boxed Water®.
Sustainability is a core value for our company, as reflected in our tagline "sustainability matters." Our goal is to leave a smaller footprint and maintain a balanced relationship with the planet. To achieve this, we use a proprietary eight-step reverse osmosis process to filter our water, reducing our carbon footprint by locating plants closer to our major customers. We recognize that transportation is a significant contributor to pollution, and we strive to reduce it wherever possible. Our commitment to sustainability goes beyond recycling, and we approach everything we do with a focus on minimizing our impact on the environment.
We prioritize sustainability in every aspect of our business, using paperboard made from renewable resources instead of non-renewable ones like aluminum or oil. Rather than partnering with celebrities, we partnered with the National Forest Foundation to plant two trees for every social media post featuring our product with the hashtag #betterplanet. We have planted 1.4 million trees as a result. Our approach has resonated with consumers who are looking for more than just aspirational marketing and want to know where their money is going. Our passionate community of customers shares our values and actively promotes environmental initiatives like tree planting and plastic pollution reduction.
The concept of near source filling is important for reducing our carbon footprint. For example, shipping water from places like Fiji or Europe involves a significant amount of fuel and pollution. By locating our facilities close to our customers, we reduce the need for long-distance transportation. Our paperboard cartons, which are made from renewable resources, are shipped flat to the filling station to maximize space efficiency. We have a carbon footprint that is 1/3 that of cans or bottles. Our focus on sustainability extends to every aspect of our business, and we strive to be carbon neutral in every step of our production and distribution processes.
The COVID-19 pandemic was a challenging time for us, as it was for many other businesses. We faced a decline in sales and had to cut budgets, including marketing. However, we were committed to keeping our entire community employed, so we didn't lay anyone off. Instead, we focused on educating our team about plastic and aluminum pollution and strengthened our knowledge base.
Our efforts paid off, and we're now rebounding stronger than ever, with sales triple what they were during the pandemic. We believe this is because consumers have realized the environmental impact of plastic waste, and they're turning back to premium water options like ours.
At our company, we have the largest library of information about sustainability and pollution, with 13 years of experience in the industry. We've conducted a life cycle assessment to compare the production of plastic bottles and aluminum cans to our cartons. We're constantly looking for ways to improve our carbon footprint and reduce waste. We believe that the health of the planet is essential to our business and the world we live in.
Currently, my biggest challenge is twofold. First, there is a lot of misinformation out there. Some people still don't believe that our carton is recyclable, and I deal with that almost every day. It is frustrating because our carton is 100% recyclable. Additionally, there is a misconception that aluminum is sustainable, but it's actually made from bauxite, which is a limited resource. Unfortunately, we are fighting against 50 years of an established industry and mindset, but we are slowly making progress. The planet doesn't lie, and the truth will eventually come out.
Secondly, there is a huge plastic and aluminum industry out there. Companies like Coca-Cola and DuPont spend millions of dollars on marketing to convince people that their products are okay. It takes a special person to see through the greenwashing and realize that you can plant trees, but you can't plant aluminum or oil.
In terms of sourcing our water, we have two filtering plants. One is in Michigan, where we source water from Lake MI through a municipality. The second plant is located in Lindon, Utah, just outside of Salt Lake City. We source our water from the Rocky Mountains filtration system there.
As a disruptor brand, we have a unique approach to the market. One of our biggest challenges is addressing the misinformation that is still out there about our product. People are not always aware that our carbon is 100% recyclable and aluminum is not a sustainable resource. It can be difficult to change an established industry mindset, but we are committed to educating consumers and making our product better.
The planet is on our side, and we are confident that consumers are becoming more savvy and will see the value in our brand. We are an authentic, honest, and transparent company, and we believe this sets us apart from other brands. We have posted our life cycle assessment (LCA) on our website, so consumers can see the environmental impact of our product.
We recognize that refillable is the best option, but with 69 billion bottles being made every year, we see ourselves as a bridge product until everyone can transition to refillable options. We will continue to focus on education and building awareness about our brand.
In addition, we are always looking for ways to improve our product. For example, we recently introduced a plant-based cap made from waste from the newspaper industry. We choose not to use sugar cane because it has a lot of issues associated with it. We will continue to evaluate ourselves and make changes to be better for the planet and our consumers.
If you would like to find out more about Boxed Water is Better®, visit https://boxedwaterisbetter.com/ or follow on https://www.instagram.com/boxedwater/ or https://www.facebook.com/BoxedWater/