The wine industry is filled with romance and tradition. The beauty of a wine bottle is a big part of that tradition and wine in a can or wine in a box just doesn’t do justice to that romance. Even the uncorking of the bottle is a special part of the experience, which is why plastic corks and screw tops have only slowly pervaded the industry despite clear practical advantages.
While the romance and tradition of the bottle are beautiful, the disadvantages are obvious; despite the desire of many consumers, wine is designed to be consumed by the bottle, not by the glass. If you don’t want to consume an entire bottle, maybe you’ll just have a beer. As a result, consumers pour $7 billion of wine down the drain each year.
Enter Kuvee, the wine bottle of the future. Imagine opening a bottle of wine, pouring a single glass, and knowing that the remaining four glasses of wine will be equally for a full month. You want red, your dining partner wants white — have both. In fact, open four bottles over a few days; makes no different. The wine will stay good until you’re ready to drink it. While maintaining the romance and much of the tradition of the bottle, Kuvee allows for a much improved drinking experience and no more pouring leftover oxidized wine down the sink.
Kuvee has some other large implications for vineyards, who are eagerly trying to find ways to build direct relationships with consumers to tell the stories of their wine to drive repurchase. As a smart bottle, Kuvee enables vineyards to tell their stories and consumers to repurchase directly from the bottle. Beyond those benefits, Kuvee is even more relevant to the winemaker, who never wants the consumer drinking their beautifully crafted wine at less than perfect quality. Kuvee can ensure that the wine is always enjoyed as the winemaker intended.
Kuvee was founded by an exceptional entrepreneurial team. Co-Founders Vijay Manwani (founder of BladeLogic, sold to BMC for $800M) and Ed Tekeian (VP Engineering at Sample6, Brontes, and ZMed) have the experience to bring a new technology to market that can change the wine industry. Vijay has long been interested in redesigning the wine consumption experience. His passion for wine led him to train as a sommelier after selling his previous startup BladeLogic for $800 million.
I’ve been testing Kuvee as a beta user for the past four months. While biased as an investor, I’m amazed at how much Kuvee has enhanced our home wine experience. Over that four months, I’ve had no urge to uncork a bottle of wine. The freedom to drink what I want, when I want, is magical. We typically have four or more bottles open at a time and never constrain our choice to only what is open at a given moment. With no pressure to finish a bottle, we can have a half glass or quarter glass or open the next bottle when only wanting one more glass. We can pair wine with what we are eating that night without worrying that we’ll pour the remaining wine down the drain or that we should just finish the bottle from the night before.
At Founder Collective, we love companies that use technology to change the way conservative industries works - Uber, OPOWER, BuzzFeed, PillPack, and Cruise Automation are examples. In Kuvee we believe we’ve found such a company, and we can’t wait to toast to their success.
Of course, as investors we’re a little biased, so check out what reviewers at Wired and Bloomberg have to say about the product. If you’re inspired to elevate your own wine experience pre-order a Kuvee at IndieGoGo.