Duo develops product to dry messes in approximately 10 seconds
“Slip-and-fall accidents are the second-largest insurance claim in the U.S.”
BY EDITH G. TOLCHIN
“Cleanup on Aisle 12!”
Or whichever number. It’s a common announcement in supermarkets, often after an accident.
More than once I’ve slipped on an opened jar of some sort of goop while at the market. Many years ago, I filed a health-related claim with a big-box store to be reimbursed for medical treatment from a slip-and-fall injury I sustained.
Now here’s a product that big-box store could have used back then. Many stores, restaurants, factories and other businesses may be using it soon to clean up messes and prevent painful and costly damages.
Edith G. Tolchin (EGT): Please tell us about your background, and how KleenzDRI came about.
Robert Wyne (RW): I’ve been in the restaurant business for over 30 years. As a hands-on restaurateur, I am always problem solving.
One of the biggest problems comes from mopping the floor that takes too long to dry. These wet floors are a huge issue. In fact, slip-and-fall accidents are the second-largest insurance claim in the U.S. In working with my other half, Rosemary Corbey, we set out to develop a product that would not only clean but dry in approximately 10 seconds.
EGT: What is the science behind KleenzDRI, and how does it work? What is it made from?
RW: We created and patented a unique, non-flammable, alcohol-based cleaner designed to lift oil, dirt, grease, soda and more—with the bonus that it dries in seconds. Since it’s fast drying, it cleans and eliminates moisture—the same moisture that is a bacterial breeding ground.
It is derived from all-natural ingredients. No dyes, no parabens, no ammonia, no bleach, and no GMOs.
It’s perfect for the restaurant industry, since fryers leave a light film throughout. This cleaner will cut through oil and grease, leaving no oily residue, no more wet tables, and no more slippery surfaces.
EGT: Tell us about your research process.
RW: The initial research began with walking through numerous hotel, motel and restaurant trade shows to see if any such product existed in the marketplace. We were looking for products engineered to lift food and liquid particles as well as dry in seconds.
I began working with a chemist to develop a formula, which we tested in our own restaurant On the Bay Seafood located in the resort town of Ocean City, Maryland. After approximately 15 different attempts, we finally developed the perfect formula to solve all the issues we sought to correct.
Further into our research, we realized that restaurants have one large cotton mop that is used for the entire restaurant: front house, back house and restrooms. The number of bacteria and cross-contamination is unfathomable and disgusting.
Not only is our cleaner a new and innovative product, we are trying to revolutionize the cleaning process. By that, we are using our product with a Bona or Swiffer tank mop with a dry disposable pad, thus eliminating the spread of contamination by disposing of the pad after each use in each area.
Bar towels have the same issue as mops. A bar towel being used to wipe off tables cross contaminates and spreads germs. You just don’t know where that towel has been. It could have been dropped on the floor, picked back up, used to wipe off chairs and benches as well as menus, and then back onto the tabletop.
By using our cleaner with a disposable paper towel, you can wipe off tables and items on the tables first. Then, wipe off chairs and benches only to dispose of the paper towel. Only then does one truly have clean and dry tables and chairs for the customers.
EGT: What are the advantages over other, for example, industrial-strength cleaners for food service, residential and building industries?
RW: The product’s ability to “lift” food particles—both solid and liquid—and clean surfaces, as it’s an alcohol-based formula. And most important, it dries in seconds.
It dries so quickly and thoroughly that there is no liquid residue left behind to create germ mutation. We set out to create just one product that can be universal to perform amazing results on all surfaces.
EGT: Is KleenzDRI product patented? If so, please share your experience.
RW: Yes. We were granted a worldwide utility patent on our cleaner. Our patent agent, QuickPatents founder Kevin Prince, has been working with us for years and has done a phenomenal job. He walked us through the entire process from A to Z and made the process a lot less painful.
EGT: Now that you’re selling KleenzDRI, how have you been giving it exposure? Where are you manufacturing?
RW: We debuted our product at the ISSA (International Sanitary Supply Association) trade show in Las Vegas in November 2019. There was great interest from a wide array of industries, and from many countries.
We are currently corresponding with a number of companies, from manufacturers to distributors that also stopped by our booth. We hope to have our product distributed into the marketplace by spring.
EGT: How is KleenzDRI packaged and sold?
RW: Our product is manufactured in a gallon size and a 32-oz. quart spray bottle. This is a ready-to-use product line. No water needs to be added.
EGT: Are there any product safety issues for this category of product, and what research have you done on this?
RW: As with any cleaner, it is not for human or pet consumption. Being derived from all-natural ingredients and having no harsh chemicals, we have found it to be one of the safest cleaners in the marketplace, especially in the commercial industry.
We have tested extensively in our restaurant over the past three years in our kitchen, the fountain drink machine area, countertops and floors, with great results. We’ve also had testing performed by an independent lab with great results.
EGT: Have you done any crowdfunding? Will you be looking to license the product, or will you run the business by yourself for now?
RW: We have not done any crowdfunding. However, we have teamed with an excellent marketing team—Ryan Doerr and Laura Leszczynski—of the Spire Group, who have invested money and countless hours of their expertise to help guide us to the ISSA trade show and competition as well as much more to come.
Our goal will be to multi-license the product in order to reach a broad spectrum of end users from residential to commercial.
EGT: Have you had any obstacles?
RW: So far, things have gone relatively smoothly. However, it has been an expensive, long, and slow process. We have had five years into this product before we were able to finally hand out 4-oz. samples at the ISSA trade show. Our biggest obstacle is our low volume of production, which drives the price of the product.
EGT: Based on your experience, what would you recommend to inventors looking to develop industrial cleaning products?
RW: You must have lots of patience, persistence, time and effort, and money that can be risked with possibly no return. Costs derive from the fact that we are currently in Maryland, we have our 4-oz. bottles that are made in Ohio, and the recent trade show was in Las Vegas.
In the end, you give out a bottle for free, say hello and shake a hand in hopes the product gains traction. It is nearly impossible for any small-time inventor to connect with a large company to disclose a new product. Therefore, we took the route of developing our product, protecting it and now will be debuting in front of a large audience in hopes of gaining attention.
We believe in this product. It’s performing and winning. That’s the successful combination.
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