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Small Business and Great Companies

Posted at July 6, 2004 | Categories : News


A machine that sprays a cooling mist on people is a success in Brazil. It is mid day, the sun is at its height in Rio de Janeiro and all of the people on the street want a little break to refresh themselves. Since it is not possible to lower the ambient temperature outside, there had to be a way to provide individual comfort without taking up space and using lots of power. This product is called Refresh and it’s a machine that stands 2.25 meters in height and sprays an evaporative mist on people in beaches, parks and pedestrian malls.

A button on the side of the machine activates the equipment and emits a ten second burst of atomized water which reaches adults above the waist. Refresh has a backlight display that allows for advertising/messaging use which works as an incentive for installations in public places.

At the end of 2001 entrepreneurs Caio Agmont and Giles D’0rnano – one from Sao Paulo and the other from Marseille, France – founded Cool Media to develop acclimatization products. The Refresh prototype was approved by Rio de Janeiro’s Mayor. Cesar Maia who nicknamed the machine “Cuca Fresca” (Fresh Face). “Initially, the intention was not to get people wet”, said Agmont. “Later, it became about how to do it without addicting them to the refreshing spray”. According to Agmont there are currently 35 units spread across Rio de Janeiro (beach promenade and around the lagoon) in other cities in Brazil (Florianopolis and Sao Paulo) and even abroad like Monaco, Los Angeles and Miami. “We want to export a lot more”. The bait for attracting foreign sales, according to the entrepreneur, is Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival.