Notebooks from the Future
Computer & Software, Specialty Computer Hardware
The Rocketbook Wave is the world’s first reusable, intelligent notebook. At its core, it’s a paper and pen notebook—there are no electronics in the physical product at all. But its companion app scans your notes into a cloud database and organizes them within services you already use, like Evernote or Google Drive.
This provides users the freedom of a traditional pen and paper notebook, with easy storage “in the cloud” using your smartphone.
By using a special pen with the Wave notebook, you can erase your notes using your microwave oven. Then you can reuse your notebook endlessly.
For the pen, the company partnered with Pilot Pen to leverage its FriXion product. FriXion pens contain special heat sensitive ink. This ink turns clear at 140 degrees Fahrenheit– and the Rocketbook Wave is specially designed to be microwave safe. Every notebook comes with one FriXion pen, and you can repurchase them in stores and online.
The company believes that people will always love capturing notes, ideas and sketches with pen and paper. It’s a more intimate experience and studies show we retain more information using notebooks than laptops.
The company is currently cash flow positive. To date, it has sold 60,000 notebooks and done $1.7 million in revenue. It expects 2017 revenues to be around $5 million. Its margins from direct sales are 70%.
The company expects near term sales to accelerate. It expects its product to be on Amazon by July 2016, and has verbal commitments from other large retailers to carry the Rocketbook.
Evernote already offers the ability to scan in paper, and it offers a “smart notebook” that it made with Moleskine.
Here are a few limitations of Evernote’s product:
– It only works with Evernote, which is a great service, but for many users, it ranks at #4 for popularity after email, Google Docs, and Dropbox.
– It is not reusable
– It doesn’t lay flat, which makes for a cumbersome scanning experience.
The company has several types of IP. It has 3 patents pending, protecting key aspects of the Rocketbook system between the app and the book, and protecting the microwave-to-reuse physical notebook. Additionally, it has numerous trade secrets on how to construct a notebook that performs well in a variety of environments and microwaves, which took thousands of man-hours to develop.
As investor Semyon Dukach, Managing Director of TechStars, wrote:
“Numerous attempts to market fancy tech heavy devices have demonstrated that taking handwritten notes with pen and paper is a core human experience that’s not easily disrupted. The Rocketbook is a different kind of innovation. It’s simple. It builds on the existing experience without demanding that users change their behavior upfront. And so it feels magical.”
The company has a big vision:
RocketBook aims to become the the de facto platform that brings digital life to real-world handwriting surfaces, reaching into other areas as well, such as whiteboards.
The company has received glowing press from CNET, Fast Company, The Boston Globe, and many others.
Jake Epstein – Co-Founder
Jake is an experienced engineer, entrepreneur and product manager.
As a Senior Hardware Design Engineer at Juniper Networks, he designed dozens of hardware systems, cards, and thermal management devices.
As Co-Founder of Trixtar, he conceived and commercialized personalized video capture system for use at snowboard terrain parks in ski areas.
As Co-Founder of Helo (acquired by Fortified Bike), he created a technology-enabled sporting helmet.
As Sr. Product Manager / Technical Operations Lead at G-cluster, he helped bring on-demand gaming to over 8 million users with a highly scalable cloud based platform.
He earned his degree in engineering from Purdue University.
Joe Lemay – Founder & CEO
Joe has 18 years of experience in software.
His roles have spanned engineering speech recognition technology, to enterprise sales at salesforce.com
He earned his BS in Computer Science from Cornell, and his MBA from Massachusetts Institute of Technology..
Prominent accelerator for tech companies. Investments include Filtrbox, Socialthing, and Spot Influence.