Naked Story - Naked Filter

THE NAKED STORY

Naked’s story is a classic startup tale that began over 15 years ago on the shores of Long Island, New York. Stony Brook University professors, Dr. Ben Hsiao and Dr. Ben Chu – the “Bens” – conducted over 10 years of R&D and proved it’s possible to use electro-spinning in order to manufacture water filtration membrane made from nanofibers. After 5 more years of experimentation and refinement, several rounds of funding, a successful Kickstarter campaign, and a TechCrunch Disrupt Startup Battlefield victory, Naked Filter now manufactures the world’s best water filtration cartridges in Alameda, California.

TIMELINE

1999

Two of the world's leading polymer and nanostructure material scientists, Dr. Ben Hsiao and Dr. Ben Chu - The "Bens" - believe they can use a process called electro-spinning to create a water filtration membrane.

2001

The Bens receive research funding from the National Institute of Health.

2002

The Bens publish their first research paper on electrospun nanofiber membranes, now cited over 1,200 times.

2003

The Bens receive funding from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

2004

The Bens crack the code and patent, "Apparatus and Methods for Electospinning Polymeric Fibers and Membranes."

2009

The Bens receive funding from the National Science Foundation.  

Victor Hwang and a group of water industry veterans co-found Liquidity, the company behind Naked Filter, with the humble ambition of solving the world's drinking water crisis.

 

2010

Filtration expert, Michael Hawes, and membrane scientist, Sylvie Chavanne, come together to form the core of Liquidity's 'Dream Team.'

2011

Series-A round of venture capital gets Liqudity moving. Production engineer John Friedl joins the team and work begins on production equipment.

2011 - 2014

Liquidity attempts to scale Naked FIlter's proprietary technology up to commercial levels, which proves to be very difficult. Michael and Sylvie toil for years in the lab, proving the membrane can indeed retain bacteria to the highest standard. John spends years tinkering with machines. With grit and determination, the Naked Filter 'Dream Team' can now confidently manufacture as much water filtration membranes as the market demands.

2015

Liquidity wins the TechCrunch Disrupt Battlefield Competition in New York city with their water filtration nanofiber technology.

Liquidity launches a Kickstarter campaign for a water bottle that contains the first iteration of Naked Filter, and proves the demand for a consumer products brand.

Liquidity launches the consumer products brand Naked Filter. Currently, the Naked Filter water bottle is the first product we've taken to market. But stay tuned: there are many more products in the production pipeline.

DREAM TEAM

In addition to the Naked Filter team, since 1999, 3 senior scientists, 7 post-docs, 9 PhD students, and 8 MS students at Stony Brook University have contributed to developing our nanofiber water filtration technology.

VICTOR HWANG

Victor follows the philosophical teachings of Captain Malcolm Reynolds, which apply to startups as much as spaceships. Find a crew. Find a job. Keep flying.

ELLIOTT GANSNER

Elliott loves to play in water as a swimmer, a sailor, a kitesurfer, a surfer, and a kayaker. He also likes to drink water. Now he spends his days working to bring clean water to every body.

SYLVIE CHAVANNE

One may say that Sylvie is an explorer of the filtration world. First, she manufactured filters. Then she developed them. Now she is looking into inventory and supply of filters. And every day, she finds there is more to explore.

MICHAEL HAWES

Michael is happy that we are based in SF East Bay, home of Creedence Clearwater Revival, Counting Crows and Green Day.

JOHN FRIEDL

John has a long history of bringing new technologies to market in many different industries. He now enjoys designing and building the equipment and processes that will provide safe drinking water to every body.

TONY WALLACE

Tony did not use to like drinking water. But since he joined Naked Filter, he realized how vital water is to your health. He’s been drinking water more and more water, as that’s all we have here, and has lost over 35 lbs.

VICTOR ACOSTA

When I’m not working, I’m always on the go. Staying hydrated throughout a busy day can be challenging and expensive. Now that’s a thing of the past. I carry my Naked Filter with me everywhere I go.

TOMAS COLUSSI

Tomas tries to follow Buddha’s Middle Path; never too high, never too low. And everything in moderation, including moderation!

RICHARD LI

Richard knows how to clean water. And smoke Texas BBQ too.

MITCHELL YEE

Mitchell loves to drink water almost as much as he loves to play in it. He is a notorious swimming pool splasher, puddle jumper, and water fight instigator. He works tirelessly to share his love for clean drinking water with every body.

SCOTT ROEDER

Our resident Ultimate Frisbee professional has traveled the world chasing a piece of plastic and knows the importance of easily-accessible safe drinking water. Scott is also a successful photographer that you will rarely find without a camera.

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