Set to open late next week, ThinkitDrinkit, a customized personal performance nutrition company, is putting the finishing touches on its retail location at 1 Royce Circle in Storrs Center.
According to its website, ThinkitDrinkit has “developed technology for interactive environments where consumers create their own functional beverage blends.”
The purpose of these beverage blends is to “address very specific physiological needs and health goals.”
ThinkitDrinkit also offers beauty products for skin rejuvenation and repair, sun protection, skin hydration, collagen production, wrinkle reduction, scarring and discoloration.
Founded by Wayne Gryk and David Kania, the company is aimed at creating personalized beverage blends and customizable nutritional and beauty regimens tailored to consumers’ unique lifestyles.
The exact date of the opening is “to be determined,” said Logan Thorp, a public relations and marketing representative for the company.
As stated on the website, “ThinkitDrinkit globally sources innovative ingredients.”
MacNeil explained that the process of getting all of these global products approved and stocked has caused a delay in the opening of ThinkitDrinkit, which has been in the works since 2014.
“I was brought in to expedite the process because it was delayed,” MacNeil said.
ThinkitDrinkit is a startup company and Storrs Center is its first location. Students have been anticipating the opening of the store since it was first announced in 2014.
Erika Marko, a senior at UConn and a resident of The Oaks on the Square, said, “it seems interesting and I like the idea that you can design it yourself… I would definitely give it a try.”
“I think it will appeal to athletes, beauty-conscious people, and any other people that are interested in nutrition,” she said.
Some students are curious as to whether the products will be all natural or organic, including Erika Greenblatt, a senior at UConn and a resident of The Oaks on the Square.
“I feel like that would really influence people’s opinions,” she said.
Once the store opens, MacNeil has plans to utilize Facebook and other social media to network and attract customers.
The store is fully staffed. All store employees are UConn students, with the exception of MacNeil and Thorp.
MacNeil said in an interview that all the student employees “have different backgrounds on campus” and are involved in the UConn community in different ways.
According to MacNeil, one thing that sets ThinkitDrinkit apart from other nutritional supplement companies like GNC, aside from the personalization component, is that the beverages are flavored and blended for students to purchase in the store.
They also have unflavored products available so students are able to put supplements into their own beverages, if they prefer.
Another interesting feature of the company is their mobile app, which students will use to customize and order their drinks on their cellphones once the store opens.
“The app is really cool,” Thorp said as she walked me through the process of creating a personalized beverage blend during our interview.
On the app, users are able to set nutritional goals and fill out other personal information so that they are able to have their blend customized to their lifestyle.
ThinkitDrinkit intends to appeal to a wide variety of individuals with different nutritional needs.
“You don’t have to be an athlete or somebody who is interested in working out” to shop at ThinkitDrinkit, MacNeil said.
The company offers a variety of different supplements, including bone health, brain health, collagen support and more.
There is also a plethora of vitamins available for students to purchase, such as multi-vitamins, pre-natal vitamins and vitamins that promote nail, hair and skin growth.
There are “over 140 different products to choose from” and “thousands of different combinations and options,” MacNeil said.
However, as Thorp and MacNeil said, ThinkitDrinkit doesn’t use any fillers in their products.
“Everything is very efficacious,” MacNeil said.
According to Thorp, the company has trademarked the term “Nutradista,” a play on the word “barista”. The company encourages customers to be “Nutradistas” and customize their own blends.
MacNeil and Thorp said the company is interested in having student athletes promote different blends.
ThinkitDrinkit will be part of the Storrs Center Stroll on Saturday, Oct. 10 from 2 to 5 p.m.
The Storrs Center Stroll features samples from businesses, giveaways, UConn performing groups, and other activities for UConn students, alumni, faculty, staff and friends to enjoy. Consumers will be able to stop by ThinkitDrinkit for free samples.
“We didn’t want to start working with the community on campus until we opened but that is our ultimate goal,” said MacNeil.
While ThinkitDrinkit is excited to be involved in the community, they are also excited about the quality of their products.
The company is a “luxury brand,” said Thorp.
Annie Belanger is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.