Our hugggstory

Believe it or not, huggg was born from somewhere between a gap in the greeting card market, a spare room in Bristol and a handwritten voucher for an americano…

No, really.

This nod to the ‘Joey love’ coupon (who doesn’t love a Friends reference) really has had a part to play in our hugggstory, but…

So, let’s start from the beginning, shall we?

Back in 2014, Paul (CEO, Chief Plate Spinner and co-founder of huggg) was working as a banker. We know, a far cry from huggging of any kind, but don’t lose interest in us just yet.

As he was researching the greeting card market for a project at work, he wondered, seeing as paper is pretty much redundant, and we do everything else – from finding a spouse to heating our homes – from the comfort of our very own smartphones, whether we could substitute swipes, likes and messages for a real life coffee, cocktail or cupcake instead?

A few days later, he answered his own question and huggg was born.

Well, not born, but it was an idea at least.

Ever the excitable bean, Paul moved quickly, and with the help of some forward-looking founding investors (Stephen and Matthew) and a quick hop on board from Paul’s sister-in-law Alice, the wheels were set in motion. Alice – head of all things creative and other co-founder of huggg – working from a dining table in the West Country by day, and Paul from under a desk lamp after clocking off from his 9-5 by night; it really was a 24 hour operation to get things off the ground.

Things progressed quickly and a couple of years later, Paul quit his job in finance to take up full time residency with Alice in our unique offices in the heart of beautiful Bristol – the perfect city to launch our app in. We headed to trade shows, brushed shoulders with impressed Google executives and shared our idea with retailers who were quick to jump on board, which was a very good sign indeed.

With positivity and kind words being spoken about us, we worked with design teams, developers and talked the ears off anyone who would listen to bring a new and improved way of communicating to the digital age.

Three years later and finally ready to take the lid off huggg. An app which leaves time consuming and out-dated e-cards in 2016 to make space for a new way to check in with your nearest and dearest. This year, you will be able to accompany your ‘I love you’ with a latte, that ‘chin up’ with a pint or even follow up on a successful date with a slice of cake to let them know you’re still thinking about them.

The best part is you can do it from afar – and in an instant.

All you need is a mobile number and a reason to huggg.

Oh, wait! We forgot to explain the whole handwritten voucher thing.

Eight years prior, Alice had given her mum a handwritten voucher for an americano, her favourite coffee. Obviously, what Alice was trying to do was huggg her mum, but huggg wasn’t built yet – ahead of her time. Anyways, it transpired that her mum had kept it and re-presented it to her, so we pretty much have a record of our first ever huggg.

But here’s the thing, whilst it would be nice to think that it was still intact through nostalgia and motherly pride, the real reason she still had it was because she hadn’t used it yet. Yup, that awesome Clipart had somehow been accepted as the real deal, and so, if nothing else, creating huggg has been a very expensive way of preventing a marvellously embarrassing encounter in Starbucks!

Our heart and soul has gone into this app.

It has coffee and kindness at its core – and we want you to be a part of it.

If you want to join in the movement and share a little love in what can be a grey and dismal world at times, start by downloading huggg today.

Some of the publications we’ve appeared in include:

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Olivia O’Brien

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