Speaker available for hire, based in Victoria
At the age of 19, Dan Flynn and his team founded Thankyou Water in 2008: a social enterprise that exists to provide everyday Australians with the opportunity to bring clean drinking water to people throughout South-East Asia Sub-Saharan Africa. Dan discovered two very opposing facts; Australians spend 600 million dollars on bottled water, while in developing nations over 900 million people still don’t have access to safe water.
He also discovered that many young people can end up spending their entire day collecting water for their family and it can be that water that ends up killing them. It was this revelation that birthed the concept of Thankyou Water. Thankyou Water’s profits fund water projects in developing nations and every bottle sold in Australia will provide at least one months worth of drinking water to someone in need.
Initially Dan and the team were faced with $250,000 of start up expenses. Peers and established business people said that it would be impossible to launch the brand. However, in late 2008 they landed deals with major suppliers and distributors around Australia and hit shelves of independent cafes early in 2009.
Thankyou Water gained considerable public support through extensive media coverage and successful marketing campaigns. Channel 7’s Sunrise took some of the team to Cambodia to film the projects and ran a two-day feature on Sunrise followed up six months later with an update on Thankyou Water’s progress. The 7pm Project also ran two feature story’s over two months that went out to over a million viewers sparking more media interest from Nova Radio, The MX, BRW Magazine, The Age, The Herald Sun, Donna Hay Magazine, Out There Magazine, Shop Till You Drop Magazine as well as multiple local radio opportunities and online media. Thankyou Water has over 22,000 people on its online social network community. Thankyou Water has carried out a series of successful marketing campaigns including partner marketing with Telstra’s 1234 projects and Levis Australia.
Today, in Australia, Thankyou Water has over 2000 stockists. These comprise of vending machines, independent stockists, retail partners and corporate partners (eg. BHP). Thankyou Water has recently partnered with 7-Eleven Australia; the 2011 Australian retailer of the year, and Australia Post; 2011 Australia’s second most trusted brand. Thankyou Water is currently exploring further retail opportunities for 2012.
Meanwhile, in Cambodia and Uganda communities have already benefited from wells and water filters that have been installed with Thankyou Water funding. Dan and members of the team have visited the projects multiple times and to date over 5,500 people now have access to safe water for the rest of their lives.
Throughout the past three years Dan has had key mentors and advisors who have helped guide Thankyou Water to where it is today. These mentors have experience in FMCG industry, finance, legal, accounting, strategy, marketing, operations, human resources and international development. Thankyou Water has an appointed legal, accounting and an independent audit firm. Dan has a strong passion for entrepreneurship and has also undertaken a degree in Project Management at RMIT University. In 2011 Dan was named as a state finalist for Young Australian of the Year Awards 2012.
Dan has a strong belief that impossibility is only someone opinion, not a fact and is passionate about inspiring others to dream big and do what many believe is impossible.