- Rodent Arkwatic Facebook Page
Eric Kariuki was on a trip to Dubai when he saw an underwater inn at the hotel. At the motel was also a tunnel cutting across a massive aquarium with visitors unable to resist the spectacular view.
Kariuki, 41, recalled the good time he had at the Dubai hotel and wanted his hamster pet back at home in Bedfordshire, UK to experience the same thrill.
"I immediately remembered how bored my small rodent pet was just having a wheel and other traditional toys to play with. I imagined how enriched its life would be if it experienced the same euphoric feeling I was having when walking through that underwater tunnel," stated Kariuki.
In the coziness of his bedroom, he combined a hamster cage with a fish tank to make an underwater structure for his rodent pet that sadly did not live to see the idea come to fruition.An Aquatic Hamster Cage Designed By RodArk
Kariuki presented his prototype to a British product development company that helped him refine the idea.
Unknown to him, the innovation which he called Rodents Akwartic would become a sensation that would not only draw the attention of pet lovers but those of investors after spreading the word to hamster and pet-related platforms that it attracted commercial and investor interests.
“Jerry is the Syrian I've got at present and he absolutely loves his home! Seeing him finding every reason to go through the customized underwater tube is a joy to behold. He loves that part of his home so much that he's turned it into his sleeping area…
Jerry has to be the world's most pampered hamster! My kids are often spending countless minutes gazing at him both when he's awake and asleep. I call it Rodents Arkwatic. My kids simply call the setup Rod Ark” Kariuki wrote.
The statement drew the attention of pet lovers, vets, pet product marketers, pet insurance firms, and investors.
One potential investor called him to make a quick deal. The investor offered to buy off the whole innovation for $1.2 million equivalent to Ksh98 then after which Kariuki’s role as the inventor would cease to exist at least on paper.
Nostalgic on whether to accept the Ksh 98 million and give away the property rights Kariuki assertively declined the offer. In what some thought of as a smart move and others as a mistake for a young man trying to earn a living in a foreign land.
Kariuki's close associate who was conversant with intellectual property laws later helped him patent the idea and partner with investors to boost the rollout of the aquatic hamster cage to the market instead of relinquishing his property rights over a lump sum.
Although Kariuki is not as popular as the aquatic pet hamsters are in various pet marketplaces all over the world including the Kenyan market his idea continues to thrive in different markets all over the world.
The innovation joins a list of other Kenyan innovations that have touched and transformed the lives of many.A Rodent Photo From Eric Kariuki Rodent Aquatic Facebook Page.
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