Passive ownership pays off for this WaterStation Technology investor

Franchise industry, franchisors, franchisees

After reinventing herself  following a long career in Information Technology (IT), Rupa Keskar got an entrepreneurial bug that led her to invest in 33 WaterStation Technology vending machines in 2018. Having grown bored of corporate America, Keskar decided to seize opportunities when she could. “I always felt like I could do more,” she says. “My career was limiting.” 

A New Start

Keskar quit her IT job in 2012 and embarked on a new venture as an apartment investor, which she continues to manage full time. Pleased with her decision to invest, Keskar continued to search for opportunities that could bring in revenue, but wouldn’t take time away from her core business or her family. She found the perfect opportunity with WaterStation Technology. 

Hands-Off Business

“A few hours each month
                   is all it takes to own this business.”

“This is a truly passive business. I only spend a few hours on it each month. I’d probably spend less time if I didn’t enjoy going through the performance reports so thoroughly,” Keskar says. “I’m very analytical, and I like reviewing data.” The reports, which are available to download at any time, update WaterStation investors about the daily performance of each machine. Keskar has been thrilled with the results. “I’ve seen steady cash flow since the first month,” she says. “With the added bonus depreciation benefit, there’s a lot to like.”

With most of her machines located in California, the Texas resident never physically touched any of her WaterStations. “The corporate team literally does everything, from site selection, to maintenance.”

To get started, Keskar flew out to Seattle and met with the corporate team to sign   paperwork, which, according to Keskar, was more of a formality than a necessity. “There really was nothing to it. No hands-on training or any technical information to memorize,” she says. 

A Strategic Approach

Most of Keskar’s machines were already placed at locations and generating revenue before she ever took ownership. The corporate team strategically assigned her machines with a well-rounded assortment of locations, such as a grocery stores, gas stations and convenience markets. “The corporate team really takes care of everything and there’s no hidden costs,” she says. 

Keskar says that her top-performing machine brings in about $1,400 each month and she believes that the company’s estimate for a four to five year return on investment is spot-on. “There is no additional overhead and the lifespan on each machine is 20 to 30 years. After five years, the income is all gravy,” she says.

 

How it Works

Eliminating the need for disposable water bottles, WaterStations are eco-friendly and inexpensive. The machines tap into existing water supplies and “percolate” the water through a series of minerals, that not only purifies it, but adds electrolytes and an alkaline pH. Alkaline water is thought to have benefits for people with high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol. It may also help deactivate pepsin, the main enzyme that causes acid reflux.

Why WaterStation Technology?

 

Passive investment: WaterStation is a truly passive investment. Corporate handles everything from securing locations to repairs.

A feel-good business: WaterStations are eco-friendly and promote good health by providing pure, high-quality drinking water. 

Limited competition: WaterStation sets itself apart as a leader and innovator. 

Recession- and COVID-19-proof: Water is always in demand and deemed essential. 

National accounts: WaterStation has accounts with major corporations including 7-Eleven Stores and Kroger.

Five revenue streams: WaterStation owners can generate advertising revenue through the LCD monitors on select machines. The company has national advertising accounts in place. 

Wide-open territories: With 75 percent of the market wide open, there’s a vast playing field of opportunity.

Increased demand: Since the pandemic, and a shortage of bottled water, there has been a spike in demand for clean, accessible drinking water. 

No hidden fees: The responsibilities of the business are included in the investment price. There are no hidden fees or additional costs.  

 

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Jill Abrahamsen
Jill Abrahamsen’s career spans more than 20 years in editorial, design, and marketing roles. She serves as editor-in-chief of Franchise Consultant Magazine and FranchiseWire. Through both platforms, Jill reports on industry news and helps Franchisors spread the word about their brands.
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