Home PODCAST GMB PODCAST EPISODE 013: soulbottles

GMB PODCAST EPISODE 013: soulbottles

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soulbottles Berlin, Paul and Georg | GreenMe Berlin Podcast

SOULBOTTLES: A SOUL-DRIVEN STARTUP AGAINST PLASTIC WASTE

Download & listen to the episode on iTunes | on Stitcher | on Youtube

"Everything makes more sense than buying a new plastic bottle" - Paul Kupfer

For this fresh new episode, I unpacked the brain of Paul Kupfer, co-founder and CEO of soulbottles (@soulbottles) - an amazing Berlin-based social startup. What they do? soulbottles produces the world’s cleanest drinking bottles and is on a mission to give people all over the world access to clean drinking water and sanitation. How they do it? Well, by offering soul-lutions through making sustainability cool, fun and sexy. They basically create colorful designs that rock and put them on beautiful glass bottles. On top, soulbottles are 100% made in Germany and 100% free of plastic.

I’m very very passionate about clean drinking water, because it is a global issue that is absolutely solvable! There’s no technology barriers whatsoever, it’s linked to giving access to resources - and everyone of us can really help to make it happen...

soulbottles is not only encouraging people to drink tap water instead of buying water in nasty plastic bottles. They also give 1 euro for each bottle sold to Viva Con Agua - an awesome non-profit from Hamburg that improves access to clean water in developing countries. So it’s really a win-win-win. You win, because you have a cool, beautifully designed and durable drinking bottle that everyone around you will be curious about. soulbottles wins, because they can sustain their business and raise awareness for a cause they believe in. And rural communities - in this case in Nepal - win because they get access to clean drinking water.

To give you some numbers: Soulbottles has supplied 8.000 households with 40.000 with access to clean drinking water, donating 37.000 euros of their profits. It’s a story about social entrepreneurship. Of shaping the for-purpose economy. Paul and his co-founder Georg built a social business completely from scratch at the age of 24! I tell you, their journey is full-on fascinating.

IN THIS EPISODE, YOU'LL LEARN MORE ABOUT:

  • Why you don’t need to be a born business crack to build a social business from scratch
  • How a bottle of vodka can become the basis for a brilliant social enterprise
  • How moments of crisis (in this case the London riots) can change your life for the better
  • Why a “just see if it works” mentality is crucial to get you started
  • The meaning of “company” in our current system
  • Why raising money for clean water is much easier than for clean toilets
  • Who inspired Paul the most on his journey & the biggest challenge soulbottles had to overcome in the last 5 years
  • The current global state of clean drinking water & what plastic bottle producers have in common with the tobacco industry
  • A moment Paul is most proud of - even though he hasn’t been there himself
  • What Paul does that drives everyone in his team crazy
  • Where you should go to connect with the Berlin social startup scene
  • The realization that the biggest structures around us are human made
  • The next steps in the FOLKDAYS story
  • The advantages - and the challenges - of starting a sustainable brand in Berlin
  • What makes Berlin “Berlin” & the effects of living in peaceful chaos

That is not all: we talked about a Kung-fu master in sales, Paul’s favorite secret spot in Berlin, the weird relationship Germans have with tap water and and and...

Oh yes: why are soulbottles made of glass? Because it tastes SO much better. Plus, glass is a great material that can be 100% recycled! soulbottles are made from around 30-50% of recycled glass. You can read up everything about the production and materials used on their website (see shownotes) - for our interview, I rather wanted to extract those stories from Paul, that you can’t read up on the web 😉

Another great fact about soulbottles: it is a certified B-Corp. Actually, they’ve been one of the first 100 companies in Germany to join the movement! A B-Corp is a for-profit business tested by the US non-profit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. And soulbottles nailed it.

NOW, I made you wait long enough, please meet Paul Kupfer of soulbottles!

SOULBOTTLES - FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT:

CLICK HERE TO READ THE TRANSCRIPT:

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE RIGHT HERE:

OR download & listen to the episode on iTunes | on Stitcher | on Youtube

As always, you’d make me happy if you could hop over to iTunes, subscribe to the podcast and leave me a short review (just click on the cover image in iTunes and then on "Reviews"). It helps me to keep going and would be a huge support from your side. 

SOULBOTTLES - IMPRESSIONS 

soulbottles Berlin - Team Shoot | GreenMe Berlin Podcast
soulbottles Berlin - Viva Con Agua edition | GreenMe Berlin Podcast
soulbottles Berlin, early hours | GreenMe Berlin Podcast

Memories of the early hours -  2012 at Paul's student

soulbottles Berlin, Paul at 24 | GreenMe Berlin Podcast
soulbottles Berlin - beginnings in Paul's flat in Vienna | GreenMe Berlin Podcast

flat in Vienna...

soulbottles Berlin, soulsurferin | GreenMe Berlin Podcast

soulsurferin edition - clearly my favorite 🙂

soulbottles Berlin, head quarter | GreenMe Berlin Podcast
soulbottles Berlin, production | GreenMe Berlin Podcast

FINAL WORDS:

Keep soulbottles in mind, Christmas is coming soon. And you heard it, you can even put your very own logo or design on it. You can find the link to their website, online shop and the stores that sell them all in the show notes. They ship to globally and are available in selected stores in 16 countries in Europe, plus USA, Canada + even Australia and New Zealand! Do you live in a city country where there’s no store selling soulbottles yet? Then drop Paul and his team a line, or encourage your favorite store to get in touch.

BEFORE YOU GO

... just a quick behind the scenes of GreenMe Berlin: over the last few weeks, we’ve been pumping all our energy into live events. We’ve been running a number of green guided tours through Berlin, visiting lots of exciting projects and bringing together a bunch of like-minded people. It really fills me with so much joy to build those connections. People from all different backgrounds learn about the eco-minded projects in the city, meet the people who run them and see how sustainability can be linked to so much passion and positive mindset. In the next months, If you wanna be part of one our next tours, keep an eye on our Facebook events page for the public ones, or simply shoot me an email to claudi@greenmeberlin.com and we’ll curate your very own, customized experience. Exciting times ahead guys

...if you enjoyed this episode, please share it with your friends and leave me a super short review on iTunes. Any feedback means a lot to me, and it helps to make the show and its messages get out to more people. Can I count on your support? Thanks a million!

AND if you wanna stay up to date with the latest interviews, green events, tours and our explorations in the Berlin green scene, sign up for our monthly newsletter. We got a little thank you if you do so: we’ll send you our best-of guide to 7 of awesome eco-minded places in the city for free.To get it, just go to greenmeberlin.com/newsletter

That’s it! Thanks so much for listening! The next episode will come out again at the last Friday of the month, so stay tuned, and as always, have a blast while going green 🙂


SOULBOTTLES - SHOWNOTES & LINKS MENTIONED

// SOULBOTTLES //

GET IN TOUCH​:

​Email: hello@soulbottles.com | Tel: +49 30 50966512

www.soulbottles.de

soulbottles Berlin, Claudi and Paul | GreenMe Berlin Podcast
soulbottles Berlin, Heimwasser edition | GreenMe Berlin Podcast
soulbottles Berlin, in action | GreenMe Berlin Podcast

HEY, ARE YOU INTERESTED IN SOCIAL BUSINESS, ZERO WASTE & CLEAN WATER PROJECTS? WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS?

Would be great to hear from you! Just share in the comments, right at the very bottom of this page.


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