Monday, September 24, 2007

If you’re thinking about starting up a bottled water business, you might want to check out the story of Blue Valley Water Company in Hartshorne, Oklahoma.

Located about 90 miles south of Tulsa, Blue Valley Water was founded by Warren Lindley, a successful businessman who owned grocery stores in the Hartshorne area, who had decided to get into the bottled water business. Initially, he planned to concentrate on producing small bottles for a private label business. His search for an equipment source led him to started looking around for an equipment source. His internet research led him to Norland International.

“I was impressed by Norland’s product line, which seemed to include the type of equipment I needed to get started,” Lindley said. “They understood the water business, and they knew that start-up businesses in small towns didn’t need the large equipment that other companies were offering.”

As he was getting ready to buy his Norland line, a regional distributor based in Tulsa approached him about providing bottled water for his established business. The opportunity was too good for Lindley to pass up.

After consulting with Norland engineers, Lindley first bought a Norland SpectraPak 5000, which produces up to 5000 small bottles per hour. Later, he added a residential and office delivery operation, for which he purchased a Norland TritonLine™ large-bottle plant that could handle 450 large bottles an hour.

Lindley offers three key pieces of advice to entrepreneurs who may be looking at starting up a bottled water business.

1. Start slowly. Buy only equipment you need when you need it. It’s not a good idea to invest in equipment before your market is ready. Be prepared, by talking to your equipment supplier, and plan for what you may need when the time is right. But don’t commit dollars until you have to.
2. Look for opportunities to expand your business. Know the choices that will be available to you when the timing is right. When you discover the opportunities, be ready to act quickly to take advantage of the situation before someone else does.
3. Find a dependable equipment manufacture to partner with. “It’s best to find a single source for your equipment,” Lindley says. “That way you know the equipment is compatible, you are familiar with the company’s level of after-sale support and service, and you can build a partnership with them based on trust.” I found the right supplier, one that was experienced in the bottled water industry, that could provide expert advise on my business development, not just my equipment.”

For a more detailed article on Blue Valley Water Company and how it got started, click on http://www.norlandintl.com/bottled_water_articles.asp, then click on the “Blue Valley Water” PDF.

Bottled Water Considered “Most Healthy,” Survey Says.
A recent Harris Interactive® survey found that 58% of consumers consider bottled water their top choice as the bottled beverage they most associate with living a healthy lifestyle. According to news released by the International Bottled Water Association, those surveyed were asked, “Which one bottled beverage do you associate most with living a healthy lifestyle?" Over 3,200 consumers were surveyed.

The results:

* Bottled water (58 percent)
* Milk (22 percent)
* None of these (6 percent)
* Bottled fruit beverages (5 percent)
* Sports or energy drinks (3 percent)
* Other (3 percent)
* Bottled tea (2 percent)
* Carbonated soft drinks (2 percent)
* Bottled coffee (less than 1 percent)

For the full story, click on http://bottledwater.org/public/2007_releases/2007-06-28_survey.htm



Visit Us At the Shows
If you’re going to Las Vegas, Nevada for the IBWA Show or Pack Expo, be sure to stop by the Norland International booth (S-5633) and say hello. We’ll be showing a Freedom™ small bottle blow molder, a BF150 large bottle filler, and the SpectraPak™ 3000 small-bottle plant. The two shows will be running concurrently right next door to each other. Pack Expo is at the Las Vegas Convention Center, and IBWA is at the Hilton Hotel next door.