Shower Drain Solution…
BY LYN KIRK
When the SARS breakout began in 2003 in Hong Kong, I realized there was an urgent need for a solution. This problem and many other airbourne infectious diseases can make you ill and in worst-case scenario kill you.
Diseases are transmitted through the open floor wastes found in your shower, bathroom and laundry floors. I put on my thinking cap and came up with my solution which I called EzyDrain.
EzyDrain is a simple chemical free retro-fit multi purpose plumbing, pest control and hygiene product. It will fit into existing floor shower drain wastes. Chemically resistant, installed in approximately one minute. Bacteria or mold, build up or live on the device causing failure due to its antibacterial qualities.
Not only will it reduce the spread of SARS it also kills staph and salmonella. It will reduce bad smells, stops bugs entering or exiting, reduces noise or whistling between floors reducing the need for deodorizers and pesticides.
A Simple long-term chemical free solution has not been available for all these problems in the past. By reducing air borne contaminants from living spaces this in turn reduces contamination into air conditioning ducts.
I wanted to offer an affordable simple solution to attract the homeowner through to hospitals, health care facilities and hotels in the hope of making modern living a safer way of life.
Testing and Modifying
The processes I went through was testing and modifications to my design until I was satisfied. I had reduce the plastic use and the product worked efficiently every time, this included creating a plastics formula that had antibacterial qualities. In total I had redesigned the product 6 times until happy.
Like most inventors patenting my idea across the world was a necessary process to protect what I had spent time and money on for its development. I began the patent process and at present have 9 patents granted and 45 pending. Most were filed between 2010-2012.
My second phase was to begin the steps of commercialization. This required scientific and home testing, producing a TV ad and marketing material to begin sales and attract possible investor interest. I worked tirelessly approaching local plumbing distributors and wholesalers to get some very small and basic sales. In most cases the bigger chains wanted a large infrastructure such as warehouses in each state across Australia with staff to stock shelves in each store they had on a weekly basis. I was not able to satisfy the demands of this process and distributors were difficult to get to come on board, which left a very disappointing outcome for me.
Ideally hospitals would have been a perfect fit to the EzyDrain product line but getting through the gate-keepers, tender systems which have no tenders for an new innovation to address an area of neglect in most hospitals also became time consuming with no results, not even one appointment to present the product after 2 years of effort.
I felt exhausted and unclear why I was having difficulty with a product leader globally, so cleverly designed, proven scientifically, commercially viable and affordable for both consumers and manufacturing? I decided to take another course of action and pursued “as seen on tv” teams for interest, this also resulted in countless hours of trying to get past the gate keepers and interest from one group who offered a partnership program, in a partnership program the inventor is required to put up money for its launch at a higher percentage return, unfortunately at this stage my patent renewals or applications and other expenses at left me with no funds to spare. At this stage I had spent over $1.5 mil with at least $1mil in unpaid wages to myself due.
My next attempt was in trying to locate an investor or investment group to come on board using their talents, contacts, and experience in commercialization. I had achieved much interest, but after many meetings some decided to not go ahead. They had more desirable products of interest. Some had suffered hardships themselves and couldn’t take on my product anymore. It felt like ground hog day again for me.
I decided to get a commercialization lawyer, an expensive exercise but felt desperate. After appointing one and signing the contracts they seemed too busy to place any care of time into it. So again I was back where I started.
Like a Mouse on a Wheel
By this stage I felt like a mouse on a wheel constantly going nowhere but doing a huge workload. My working hours for the past four years now had reached 80-120 hours a week and still I was sitting on an amazing product with no traction. 8 years have passed since I designed the first prototype. Most of my 45 pending patents will be soon up for final examination and possibly granted. The upkeep on 9 patents granted and 45 pending seems to be painful exercise. Each year must raise the money to support them.
It’s 2017 and I am negotiating with a manufacturer/retailer but progress is slow. I get evaluated and wait for them to hold the meetings, which will determine future licensing with them.
I’m hopeful and believe in my product. I have generated small sales, and to date in 4 years of have never had a complaint, fault or return. A leader in its category, EzyDrain addresses areas neglected in hospitals. I see the benefits it offers hotels. No longer issues of early checkouts or cancellations due to rooms smelling foul.
It is difficult to take such a lengthy journey when you know you are the best while others having product issues make it.
Holding onto basics such as a home to rent and petrol in my car is often the stresses that burden me each day. I work hard and wait for my chance to successful commercialization.
Patience and trust
Patience and trust is key in the patent journey. I focus on locating a partner to share in my patent ownership. Hopefully, the funds to either commercialize the product ourselves or put it into others hands via a licensing deal.
If you believe the journey will not be a struggle while enduring loss of lifestyle and resources then patents is not a path you should seek. It is a brave move to begin the patent process and ride it out until it fruits. The most important element is researching what your competitors are doing. Be certain your product is a leader in design, functionality and manufacturing expense. Do your homework before taking on a product to commercialise and be patient to wait for several years or more. Good things take time. Luck of being in the right place at the right time comes into play. Variables of attraction or need from consumers and retailers will determine how soon you will fruit the rewards of your labour.
Patience is the key.
For more information, please visit www.ezydrain.com