Uniting Function And Form: Meet The Smart Pillbox Changing The Game

Uniting Function And Form:

Meet The Smart Pill Box Changing The Game

Regina Vatterott is no ordinary 23 year-old. The only lady in the quartet that makes up the Elliegrid team has proven herself an invaluable member of the entrepreneurial scene in Houston, but also as the sole woman of a 4-man team and co-founder of smart pillbox Elliegrid. She is a rare find in someone in the under 25 year-old mark who has achieved so very much and continues to devote her time to promote this product that will continually give back to the health and wellness of those who use it.

Illness, weakness, strength are all friends or adversities to the human condition at one stage or another of our long lives – and whether you’re an under-the-weather, overworked college student or a 70-year-old retiree – we can all forget to take our vitamin D or daily med. Elliegrid intelligently pairs with an app on your phone to notify you when to take your vitamins and prescription medicines, as it would to wake you up everyday – easy as pie. It also looks nice – almost like a futuristic gameboy with no screen, and a sleeker finish.

The heart-warming story behind the concept derives from Vatterott’s co-founder Abe who found his grandfather in a less than desirable condition after forgetting to take his medication for multiple days in a row due to how complicated and intricate his routine had become. According to Vatterott, Elliegrid was thus born out of Abe’s drive to help his grandfather and those like him to keep up with their medication. The product’s immediate popularity has now spread to those millennials who work and play too much to remember their own daily doses.

“It’s really hard to find medical supplies that don’t make people feel like they’re a patient.”

Vatterott’s personal relationship with the box comes from the passing of her aunt from cancer. While she acknowledges that of course the help of a simple pill box would not have saved her aunt from the disease, she posits that perhaps her last months would have been less painful and stressful with the aid of something such as Elliegrid.

One of Vatterott’s goals, in fact, is to create a new patient standard for those going through medication-heavy conditions like cancer. This drive to help others in a similar situation to her aunt or Abe’s grandfather has lead the team to enormous success, with a campaign driven by empathy.

“There were other smart pillboxes on the market – we’re certainly not the first, but they were all very complicated and very expensive.”

Having received an offer early on for $1 million for half the company – Vatterott and the team decided they would make the money themselves keeping ownership of the product. Today Elliegrid’s initial Indiegogo goal of $40,000 has been substantially surpassed and continues to grow, as the initiative has caught the eye of some big industry names. Athletes like Venus Williams, who have a requirement of more than a few medical aids or vitamins have come out openly to back the product, are perhaps the most noteworthy. Along with this star-studded support, the box has received attention from all aspects of the entrepreneurial and tech industries, with accolades in the past year like placing in the TechCrunch Pitch-Off 2016, the Health 2.0 Takeda Challenge, and the Regional Hardware Cup hosted by AlphaLabs.

“It was always just really hard to organize the medication – I remember just boxes upon boxes. At that point it was very critical. I’ve always wondered whether we could have made that process more efficient”

Vatterott sounds almost astonished at how successful her Indiegogo campaign has been – having vacillated about what platform to launch Elliegrid’s crowdfunding from in the beginning. Indiegogo’s receptive and encouraging team aided Vatterott and her teammates who never once had to outsource for their campaign – all of the graphics and campaign detail were done by themselves. Among co-founders Regina, Abe, Nicolas and Hieu, the group appears the perfect millennial amalgamation of tech, marketing, logistics and engineering – and having grown Elliegrid from nothing but sticky glue and an idea.

It is perhaps one of the most desirable qualities attracting investors and awards to the product – the team’s ability to utilize its capital efficiently and with great effect. There are perhaps no limits to the fierce foursome’s capabilities given what Vatterott refers to as their ‘cockroach’ nature – being able to survive on so little for so long.

What’s next for Elliegrid? Vatterott says a pink version is in the works – meeting every girl’s smart pill box dream.

Amy Corcoran

Head of Content at SWAAY: Amy is an Irish writer, avid foodie and feminist with an insatiable appetite for novels and empowering women's writing. She has enjoyed calling Dublin, Paris and now New York her home.

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