Once upon a time Aladdin mugs were the favorite of the frequent traveler. They were sold mainly at truck stops, travel plazas, and filling stations along well traveled roads. Their popularity stemmed from their large size, leak resistant tops, and stable bottoms. These weren’t travel mugs built for sissy SUV’s. No, these mugs were for the serious long haul truck drivers that make their living on the road.
As time went on, more people found out about these mugs and started to get some attention from the more casual driving crowd. People who travel frequently, such as the daily work commuter, found the larger size and leak proof lid to be more practical than other mugs. Aladdin began taking in some of this feedback and designing mugs intended more for dainty cup holders rather than the expansive, desk-like dashboard of 18 wheelers.
With more customer feedback came more refinements appealing to even more casual travelers. No longer just a secret of commercial truckers and commuting road warriors, these coffee travel mugs began appearing in the homes and cup holders of stay at home parents who appreciated the well designed tops and increasingly attractive designs. Ironically, this was the beginning of the end for the mug admired by the hard core fans.
Soon Aladdin found themselves in the position of making more money from the newer styles of travel coffee mug rather than the old school “super big gulp” sized behemoths. But the fans were still there. So how does a company move from humble working class beginning to an upscale customer base? They have to make a difficult decision on where they want the company to go and how to best serve their customers, both new and old.
Their final decision allowed them to move ahead with modern designs and materials while still providing for the needs of their earliest fans. By selling off the designs on the original mugs to another company, they managed to find a way to not be held back by legacy designs, but still allow people to find the largest and most basic of functional coffee travel mugs. The old designs are being made by a company not related to Aladdin and may still be found at truck stops and other highway outposts.
With the older, basic designs no longer on the books and with no responsibility to keep them in production, it freed Aladdin to focus on new materials, new designs and new products. This is now a company that still makes travel mugs but now also creates lunch kits for school children, insulated bottles, lunch boxes, and other items to help travel with food. They’re also in the lead with materials, phasing out plastics that can be harmful when used in contact with food.
So even though Aladdin mugs came onto the scene in a humble way, they’re continuing their story on the leading edge of design, materials, and functionality.