Vipe Desai’s HDX Hydration Mix – A Business Cocktail Of Conservationism, Healthy Choices, And Passion

When you’re thirsty, are you typically concerning yourself with questions such as: ‘what happens to this bottle when I throw it away?’ or ‘is this sugary soft drink likely to increase my chances of developing diabetes?’ I didn’t think so. Don’t feel bad. I don’t really consider those things either, but I assure you that we both should be. Have you heard of The Great Pacific Garbage Patch? It’s an area of floating trash, of which most is plastic, believed to extend over 600,000 miles and to weigh over 3.5 million tons. What?! That’s more than twice the size of Texas! How bout diabetes? Obesity? Diabetes.org states that 25.8 million children and adults in the United States (that’s 8.3% of the population) have diabetes. Now that I’ve traumatized you with these saddening facts and statistics, it may seem strange to you that I’m going to introduce a businessman named Vipe Desai who’s new business venture, HDX Hydration Mix, is a powdered drink mix. I promise it’s not that strange…

Vipe Desai

Vipe’s website says:

“A passionate surfer since the age of 14, Vipe operated one of the most influential action sports retail businesses in Southern California, founded and managed the daily operations of a youth brand consultancy and most recently held a senior marketing role at Monster Energy, one of the most globally recognized brands in the beverage industry where he was responsible for athlete relations, event sponsorships and brand partnerships on a global level.”

“Vipe is a member of the Surfrider Foundation’s board of directors, a board member of the SIMA Humanitarian Fund, chairman of the Rob Dyrdek Foundation, and a former board member of the Life Rolls on Foundation. He also founded project Blue and Vote the Ocean.”

Sounds impressive? That’s because it is. (I urge you to check out the links to those organizations I mentioned above. It can’t hurt to learn more about people and organizations that are hell-bent on making positive changes to the world around us.)

“A few years ago I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. That changed the value of Monster to me. I know there’s a place for energy drinks but for me it changed. That brought me to really take a look at my health and to look at what causes diabetes and what caused it in me. I never realized that this was such an epidemic in America, including obesity. One large contributor to this problem was soft drinks; the amount of sugar that is in soft drinks.”

Vipe’s life changes eventually led him to part ways with Monster Energy. His research into diabetes, obesity, and the effects soft drinks had on those conditions gave itself over to a new passion; a new mission – but that wasn’t the only thing about the beverage industry that troubled Vipe.

“I’ve worked really closely with the Surfrider foundation. For six years I’ve been on the board of directors and in the last couple of years we started to look at the impact of single-use plastics. The number of single-use plastic containers that we are disposing of (just here in America) is about 2 ½ million every single HOUR – and that’s just water bottles! Plastic doesn’t go away. It just breaks down into smaller and smaller particles.  A lot of it is ending up in our oceans. It’s just a big plastic toxic soup. That inspired me.  HDX was inspired by those things: health and environment. Powders aren’t new, and reusable water bottles aren’t new either, but I don’t think people have told the story that both of those together can have a profound impact on health and our environment. That’s really the purpose of HDX: to provide a healthy natural powdered beverage choice, and also to encourage people to enjoy a soft drink in a reusable water bottle.”

‘The Great Pacific Garbage Patch’

The Fight of Vipe

“Prior to starting HDX I was the director of marketing for Monster Energy so I’d had some influence in the background of the beverage industry. I was there for about a year and a half helping those guys out with their marketing services. After I left Monster I decided I’d pursue the beverage industry and see what opportunities there were. It’s been really exciting and interesting to learn what all is going on in the beverage industry. It’s a very competitive landscape but I think what makes us different is we’re approaching it from a brand perspective. Brands matter. People are into brands and we feel that our brand has values; and it has history – for myself and for the other people involved in that we’ve been a part of the action sports industry for a long time. We’ve been participating in environmental initiatives whether it’s been through Surfrider or other organizations. So really it’s an experience and a business that’s built on our passion. We’d like to see something better than what’s being offered right now.”

“I’ve always been a believer in ‘boot-strapping’ good ideas. Sometimes people don’t want to grind things out. They just want to go get 2-3 million dollars right out of the gate and use somebody else’s money to build their dreams. There’s nothing too wrong with that but I think sometimes when you have a lot of money at your disposal you tend to not grind it out as much and there’s waste associated with it. HDX: I have funded it myself from the beginning. We’re now looking at investors to come on board but in a very small scale. I think is important for entrepreneurs to grind it out (their dreams or whatever it is that they’re going to start) because you learn everything about your business from the ground up. You build resiliency into your business because you understand what its strengths and its weaknesses are across every different department and supply chain. For this, I wanted to put my own money into it. I wanted to experience every aspect of it: learning how the product is made; learning how the supply chain is going to work; and getting the entire foundation built. It’s not always convenient but it’s definitely exciting, and that’s how I’ve always built my businesses in the past.”

“What motivates me everyday is working with people I care about and respect while doing something that could make the world a better place. I know that sounds a little lofty but really, at the end of the day, it’s making a difference. I think if we can make a difference with health and our environment it’ll be a good thing. I’m doing something that doesn’t feel like work; something that I’m very passionate about. Since the first day I owned a surf shop its like I haven’t done a days worth of work. I hate leaving the office and can’t wait to get back to the office.”

Desai’s the Guy

It’s fairly clear that Vipe Desai is bound to make that change in the word he is so passionate about. His business sense and experience have taught him many things. You might wonder what other plans Vipe has in store for his HDX brand – well:

“Could capitalism be used as a force for good? That’s what I’m revolving HDX around: capitalism as a force for good. We can be a business, we can make money, and since we’re a new business, we can build support for nonprofit organizations right from the beginning. We are going to be able to support organizations like the Surfrider foundation, Vote the Ocean, SIMA Environmental Fund, and Stoked Mentoring. Our long-term goal is to be a successful enterprise and also to support nonprofit organizations with funding and by promoting their mission. I think it’s difficult for larger brands, more popular brands that are established, to set aside funds for nonprofit organizations that are doing great work. Profit margins are always under scrutiny and there’s always stress on the bottom line. For us, if we can build our brand and build in support for these organizations, I think we’re going to be a better company in the long run.”

“There’s a lot of stuff going on in our world right now. There’s a lot of suffering, there’s a lot of opportunities to make a difference, there’s a lot of charities out there that are working hard. I think now, more than ever, there are a lot of opportunities for young entrepreneurs to start businesses that will help nonprofits or make the world a better place. Get out there and do something that is not only good for you and builds around your passion, but can make a difference in the world.”

To learn more about Vipe Desai and HDX Hydration Mix, please visit:

Website: HDXMix.com

Blog: HDXMix.com/go/category/blog/

Facebook: Facebook.com/HDXmix

Twitter: Twitter.com/#!/hdxmix

 

About the Author: Daniel Ballard

Daniel is a Writer and Entrepreneur. He is Co-Founder/Main Author/Editor of BossStart and Co-Editor/Featured Author for BossStart's sister site, PauseStart, launching early 2012

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1 Comment + Add Comment

  • I had no idea that 2.5 MILLION plastic containers were being disposed of every HOUR. It’s sobering to find that out as well as where the heck that goes. Our household went ‘bottle-less’ a while back, when we found out that chances were that our tap water was actually cleaner than bottled water, combined with the carbon footprint we were leaving behind even though we reused our bottles.. It’s just not worth it! The “regulation” on bottled water (or lack thereof) is startling in and of itself. We filter our own water with a brita filter/pitcher that we purchased for about 10 dollars, and lasts 3 months before the filter needs to be changed. We don’t drink soda or energy drinks (except as mixers)… but will definitely be more aware of the impact. Thanks guys!

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