Article via Gold House the premier nonprofit collective of top Asian founders, creative voices, and leaders dedicated to unity, representation, and success.
Justin Wang is the Founder of LARQ, a company that uses innovative technology combined with elevated product design to deliver hydration that’s better for you and the planet.
What inspired you/your team to create your company?
We created LARQ to solve the challenges we faced in our personal lives to eliminate single-use plastic water bottles. Reusable options on the market are great but they have 3 critical shortcomings:
- They get stinky and dirty;
- They are hard to clean (most are not dishwasher safe); and
- Most importantly, they don’t purify water on the go, which is when we are most likely to reach for a disposable plastic option.
We decided to hit these pain points head-on with the LARQ Bottle — the world’s first self-cleaning water bottle that purifies water on-the-go.
What distinguishes your company and product in the market?
Simply put, we use a patented PureVis technology to purify water and help to keep your stinky water bottle clean.
The Founder’s Journey
Tell us about a major milestone in your life that forced you to pivot. What did you learn?
In my first job out of college, I was laid-off on the first day. During my exit interview, I somehow convinced the boss that I had the language skills needed to help the bank grow its APAC business. I ended up creating a job for myself, but my Mandarin skills were not exactly business ready.
I was terrified going to every meeting; I was expected to be the cultural liaison! So, I spent every evening learning Chinese. I ended up succeeding, and it helped prepare me for the hustle of entrepreneurship.
What advice would you give your 18-year-old self? Your 80-year-old self?
To my 18-year old self: Be a sponge for help, knowledge, experiences. You’d be surprised how many people are willing to help if you open yourself up to it.
To my 80-year old self: Carve out time for yourself. The grind is the norm, but you’d be surprised what a good night’s sleep or a solid workout at the gym can do for your mental clarity. Remember what a nap, a hard workout, or a veggie smoothie can do to solve a seemingly unsolvable problem.
If you could share a meal with anyone in the world, who would it be, where or what would it be, and why?
Dumplings with my partner Laurie. Good meals should be shared with those you love :)
The Journey Ahead
Tell us about one of your core values and how it influences the way you plan to scale your business.
Taking care of our humanity and working on that on a daily basis. We have so much in common and it gets lost in our current environment. We all want a better life for our family and communities and sometimes that can start with something as simple as taking care of our own health and the environment around us.
What are you most excited about in the next year for your business?
Expanding our business into a 360-degree hydration brand. With over 1 million plastic bottles being added to landfills per minute and more than 27 million Americans being exposed to contaminated drinking water every day, we launched LARQ to address the major consumer pain points encountered in reusable bottles, and now table-top filtration.
As we continue to grow, our hope is that the technology used in LARQ products will change the way we approach both our health and our relationship with our earth.