Patricia Ceysens is a former Flemish Government Minister who has invented an innovative new concept to solve the problem of a sedentary lifestyle by combining the opportunity to exercise with society’s love of working using technical gadgetry. She founded the company WeWatt, which produces cycling desks that allow the rider to generate green energy to charge mobile phones, tablets and laptops whilst working. Patricia has partnered with multi-disciplinary engineer Katarina Verhaegen to develop the technology and its intellectual property.
“…human pedal power is converted into electricity. Healthy electricity…”
Patricia Ceysens explains her idea for WeWATT
The idea for WeWATT came from the need for more exercise in normal daily activities and from the will to power our own communication devices by our own effort. The WeWATT bike is an ‘energybike’, which means that human pedal power is converted into electricity. Healthy electricity. Our ‘energybike’ is integrated in design furniture. So far we have made two models: WATTaKIOSK and WATTaTABLE. The two models serve different markets.
Passion for innovation
In my former life I was minister of economy and innovation so I developed a passion for innovation and I got to build a good network. Katarina already went through the process of starting her own tech start-up so, she knew a lot about starting a business and creating IP.
From the start we wanted to create a sustainable product and a sustainable company. Local production in a sheltered workplace is one way to walk your talk. In the development of a new product it is very important to have production nearby because so many things need to be sorted out.
Sustainable way of doing business
The choice to work as much as possible with recycled materials is another way to engage in a sustainable way of doing business. We cycle for power. We recycle for nature.
We are constantly looking to innovate our technology, our design and our business model. We are working hard to put a real office version on the market, where people can work long hours on our cycling desk. We will also make the internal system smart, so that the user will have interaction and will be able to measure the energy made and the calories burned.
So far we have no real competitors on the design furniture market. We have a good contact with Andy Wekin and Steve Blood from the company Pedal Power in the US.