Inventor Jarmo Aurekoski did what thousands of professionals in the airline catering business have been trying to do for decades. The Icebridge cooler is now taking off globally.
The idea for the cooler came to Aurekoski when he was considering the problems related to transporting and storing food while he was working in the airline catering business. When the Icebridge Cooler is placed in an airplane trolley, the food remains at a hygienic temperature for more than 20 hours.
The food can be loaded onto the airplane already at the airport, also for longer flights. Competing cooling devices only stay cool for about five hours.
— The world’s largest trolley manufacturer asked me how I was able to come up with the idea when they’ve had a whole army of engineers working on the problem, says Aurekoski.
The cooler was presented at the world’s largest aviation expo in March 2012, with Icebridge as the only Finnish company among the 700 exhibitors. It received extremely positive feedback.
— As a result of the trade show, we are holding discussions with more than 50 airline and transport companies around the world. At the same time, we have started up our deliveries to the first airlines, such as KLM, Transavian, Luxair, AirDolomiti and Blue1, says Aurekoski.
According to him, controlling the cold chain is one of the most challenging problems facing the transport business.
— Our innovation offers the most advanced solution on the markets. We were positively surprised by the amount of interest from customers, he says.
The key to Icebridge is its simplicity.
— If a product is too complicated, it won’t work. A simple product is easier to duplicate and its risks are easier to minimise.
Beleaguered by the aviation sector’s strict demands, the sales work is unceasing and time-consuming but millions of euros in savings can be achieved with the invention, even for smaller airlines.
— We are presently looking for interesting global and regional partners with whom we can translate our global aims and well-executed take-off into smooth cruising.
According to Aurekoski, the company has received requests for quotations worth more than a million euros. Additionally numerous airlines are testing the product, so some interesting customer relationships should be in the works by the end of the year.
— The safe transportation and storage of food in different transportation vehicles is constantly increasing, due to, among other things, the growth of the airline business and the home delivery of food. Our company is preparing for a strong period of growth. In addition to airline traffic, we intend to maintain a strong presence on the roads and railway tracks as well. Our applications for supermarkets and consumer solutions are being developed full speed ahead, Aurekoski concludes.