Hello, my name is Molly Liu founder of Sealpod. I would like to share with my dear you the story of how Sealpod came to be.
Personally, 2007 was one of the worst years of my life. The sudden loss of my father and my marriage, both really hit me hard. I had no savings, no place to live, but fortunately I have a great boss who allowed me to live in the office. I work in a Spanish trading company but when the Spanish financial crisis hit on 2008, we lost so many business and useless to say I was under great stress, anxiety, and was feeling depressed.
The one thing, that always comforted me since younger years was the smell, the taste, and the texture of a good coffee. It’s been always coffee. But this time, even coffee was not enough.
For the next 5 years, I tried different types of coffee machine but I could never achieve the same perfect cup of coffee twice, as an obsessionist I didn’t want to give up. Although genetically I’m Asian, I grew up in South America, so needless to say, coffee runs in my blood.
I remember one time when using a stovetop moka pot, I forgot to turn off the gas on time, so when I grab the moka pot, the plastic handle already melted, and I was burnt by the metal pot. I fell on the floor and collapsed in tears. Not that the wound didn’t hurt like hell, but it how come even my last comfort was so hard to get?
I felt like a drama queen crying over a cup of coffee, but still couldn’t cope with not being able to make a simple cup of coffee…. This might sound silly, but sometimes when you can’t do such a simple action like brewing a cup of coffee, you feel so useless and frustrated. Having a tight work schedule, I finally gave up and resorted to instant coffee, which made me sick and lose a bunch of hair and even made me feel more depressed.
One day on 2012 I told a dear friend about my coffee concerns, and she introduced me to coffee capsules in a shopping mall counter. I can clearly remember the first time the machine brewed coffee and watching the drops becoming crema layers in that black liquid was so hypnotizing! And the very first sip, I thought this is exactly what I was looking for all these years. I asked the seller to brew another cup of espresso, and remarkably it tasted the same! How come it can brew so effortless within 30 second at the same standard?! I immediately got one.
I had at least 5 coffee capsules daily and if I had customers visiting the office, we had some more. I was feeling so great again! But when I looked at my garbage bin, I felt not that great…. And when I had to make my next purchase, I felt even worst. I was spending over 200usd per month for coffee capsules! Soon enough, I tried all the 20+ varieties the brand offered, and wanted to expand to more options, specially wanted to try fresh roasted specialty coffee but I didn’t want to go back and spend over 10 minutes just to prepared a cup of coffee in those old creepy old coffee makers I had. I know some people enjoy the art of preparing a cup of coffee, but neh.. that’s not me, I just want my coffee asap!
Although the coffee capsule system fulfills my coffee expectations, I was feeling guilty that I was making so much waste, spending so much money, and worst of all, I felt like being slaved by not having more options.
So I got all the reusable capsules available in the market and tried them all, unfortunately, none of them was good enough for me, some of them didn’t have enough crema, some of them made weak coffee, some of them even use toxic plastic material, and some of them was difficult to use or even damaged my machine.
As a R&D myself, I might as well design a simple reusable capsule, and being the eldest of 5 siblings, I originally branded it Bigsis (now rebranded Sealpod)
Designing the product was the easy part I just had to make it PERFECT, the hard part was searching for good quality food grade approved materials and waiting approval for FDA approved laboratories, and making the crazy decision to put all my savings to make this come true. I remember people telling me there’s no point patenting the design, researching for higher quality raw materials, or even why bother with the lab tests! But for me this is what matter the most, people who will buy our SealPod are trusting the safety and functionality of the product.
In Nov. 2013, I uploaded to youtube a video review of Sealpod’s performance comparing to similar products, it is a VERY BORING un-edited long video of more than 1 hour split into 3 videos.. I didn’t expect it would become such a success and having so many interested comments on where to buy it! Thanks to those comments and a little voice that told me that my business will be blessed, we go ahead finishing the developing and finally started production in late 2014. I was clueless how to sell it, I figure I would just learn to make a website and reply to the youtube comments on where to buy it.
And like that, out of dozens and now hundreds of similar products, years later I’m so proud to say it is still one of the best products in the market for reusable capsules, and how we’ve expanded for more coffee capsule systems.
One of the sweetest things I get to do is read thanking mails or reviews from all over the world, even in languages I need to google translate it 😊
I’m so glad people love it, because now they can choose their favorite fresh roasted coffee and put it in a capsule where they can enjoy at the convenience of their machine. At the same time, it helps them to save money, feel good knowing they are not harming the environment and not compromising the quality of coffee they enjoy!
Looking back, I am grateful for the obsession I felt about making the perfect coffee as easy and quick as possible, for it brought an opportunity to make SealPod, a reusable capsule that you can fill your fresh coffee in less than 30 seconds.
I would like to thanks the people who supported me along the way, my generous boss Gorka Garmendia who gave me refuge in times of despair and loaned me initial investments, TingYu (RIP) who introduced me to the world of coffee capsules, my family and friend for helping me run the business, Frank, Ted and Kan my partners in R&D and supply of SealPod, Justin Brook, Ecocapsulas, Crema Joe and all our distributors around the world for seeing our product worthy to distribute them. And a special thanks to a customer that suggested the concept of “FRESH COVERS” making SealPod one of the reusable capsules that you can fill in advance in a bunch and use it later at your convenience.
And finally, thank you my dear friend for reading this long article.. as you might already know, I’m not good at editing videos, writing words, marketing products, I’m just good at making SealPod work. Big Hugs!