Is there anything better than that first hot shower after a few days in the Colorado backcountry, washing off layers of mud and sweat? Now imagine you don’t have to wait until you get home, but can wash off that dirt anywhere, anytime with a hot portable shower system from Montrose-based Geyser Systems. The company has made it possible to clean yourself and your gear using only 0.8 gallons of water—a technology as valuable in Colorado’s high country as it is in water-insecure communities around the globe.
Jonathan Ballesteros, CEO and founder of Geyser Systems, first launched his startup in Austin, Texas but struggled to find the right business community for his vision to truly grow. He and Geyser Systems had set out to “transform our relationship with water with every sacred drop” and needed a location that supported that mission. He says it was clear that Colorado’s ecosystem for startups—especially in the outdoor recreation industry—was going to be the best place to connect with the right people. Ballesteros now believes that moving to Montrose, Colorado was one of the most important decisions he made for his company.
“I really admire that Colorado is making a firm decision to… stick with what is important to them,” said Ballesteros. “Colorado authentically listens, cares, and is cohesively working together to make a difference.”
After participating in the ICELab Outdoor Accelerator Program in Gunnison, Ballesteros was interested in keeping the business in Colorado. Support from the Global Business Development (GBD) Division of the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) and the Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office (OREC) helped make that possible.
In addition to receiving tax credit incentives through the Business Funding and Incentives Rural Jumpstart Program, the division invited Ballesteros to present his product to Governor Jared Polis alongside other major outdoor retailers. Through GBD’s State Trade Expansion Program, Geyser Systems was also selected to participate in the Green Expo Trade Show in Mexico City in September 2021. Along with four other Colorado-based companies, Ballesteros had the opportunity to connect with potential customers and consultants.
The level of support shocked him. In Colorado, Ballesteros could see that state leaders were committed to driving long-term economic results in meaningful ways and ultimately making a difference for people all over the world.
In addition to this support from the state government, the Montrose community quickly embraced Ballesteros and Geyser Systems. Ballesteros credits the local people, their commitment to hard work, area resources, and the business-oriented city council and staff with helping Geyser Systems make the move to Colorado seamless.
It also inspired him to give back to the community by creating a leadership development program that teaches high school interns about startups and helps them develop skills for the future. Currently, a 17-year-old even works as Geyser’s production scheduler and supply chain manager, managing $300,000 of raw materials. “She will be COO of a company one day,” said Ballesteros.
Now that Geyser Systems has established its strong roots in Colorado, Ballesteros is also looking toward the future. He has his sights set on finding investors to help the company grow into multi-national status and provide meaningful, high-quality products that solve real problems for people and the planet. “Our second generation product will change the world,” said Ballesteros. “That’s my promise.”
And that’s just the kind of outcome that OEDIT and BF & I's programs are designed to create: a thriving business with dedicated, thoughtful leaders looking to make a difference in Colorado and beyond.