Renaming Our Baby

TL;DR: From now on our name is Home Run and our logomark is going to be the pineapple. We are still on the same mission: creating the best and fastest grocery delivery ever. Read on for the full story:

Why “Convibo” doesn’t fit anymore:

There’s this cliché that founders see their company as their own little baby. And it fact, young companies and babies are not that different: sometimes you’re not sure how it all happened, in the beginning they look weird and are completely dependent on you. But then, at some point they develop a life and personality of their own. We recently realised that the name we chose for our company doesn’t fit its personality anymore and instead of sending our baby through its life with a weird name, we decided to be good parents and do something about it.

Let’s start by telling you how we got the wrong name “Convibo” in the first place.

How we got the name “Convibo”:

Convibo started almost five years ago at the University of Warwick. We were three graduate students who had just finished analysing online grocery supply chains for our Master’s degree.

The conclusion of our research: ordering groceries should be better.

The creation of our company.

The typical way of ordering groceries somehow felt like making a plumbing appointment. You had to plan your day around it and it wasn’t exactly fun. At the earliest, you could have your food delivered the following day, you got replacements you didn’t want, and the minimum order amounts were so high that you had to start a mid-size commune to justify your order.

It simply didn’t work for us: the ones who don’t want to plan ahead, who have full, busy daily lives. So, we set out to build a grocery delivery service that would work for us, and for everyone else, whether you are a busy parent who wants the groceries at home shortly after picking up the kids from school or perhaps someone who doesn’t have the mobility to leave the house and do your shopping yourself:

The grocery service of our dreams had the following elements:

  1. No waiting around for your driver and no planning ahead
  2. Better replacements
  3. The ability to get your stuff delivered on the same day
Our vision of how grocery delivery should be.

We thought we had found the holy grail of delivery solutions to all this with an ingenious concept: we shop groceries directly from your favourite store, call you should you need replacements and deliver to a refrigerated locker in your apartment building.

“Refrigerated locker?” I hear you ask — let me explain:

In our imagination it looked something like this:

Our first business idea: a refrigerated locker in your apartment building.

We would deliver your order to the refrigerated locker in your apartment building and then send you a PIN code to open the doors. It would be delivered on the same day you place your order and then you would have complete flexibility as to when to pick it up.

For customers it was like having a second fridge in their foyer area — no waiting for the driver, no scheduling ahead, same day delivery — that was something entirely new back then.

We just needed a name for the whole thing. After pondering for days, we finally figured we had found the solution by combining “convenience” with “box” > Convi-bo > Convibo.

Yes, today it makes me cringe as well, but don’t be so quick to judge: although it wasn’t exactly a linguistic masterpiece it somehow did the job — and most importantly: the URL was available — we felt like kings.

The creation of “Convibo” wasn’t exactly a linguistic masterpiece.

So, we started out at the UoW placing lockers in student accommodations and office buildings. The trials were promising, students were ordering, we were booked out almost every day — our hunch was right: people loved the service.

Our first ever locker was placed in a student accommodation at the University of Warwick.

But then, although people loved it we had to stop this locker business for a very simple reason: it simply didn’t scale.

The lockers were too expensive, the production time too long, the property management companies took ages to make decisions and in the end just one negative vote from the tenancy board could kill the whole project for an entire apartment block. We were three graduates with no funding trying to juggle a business that had more stakeholders than a Fortune 500 company.

But startups don’t work like this; startups must focus on their customers and not get lost within bureaucracy. In our case however, there were simply too many parties involved who forced us to move super slow.

Too many cooks spoil the broth, too many stakeholders spoil the startup.

We tried hard to get the locker model running, however we had to give in eventually.

Our vision of creating a new way of getting people’s groceries to them quickly and conveniently never faltered, however. So, we went back to the drawing board, but this time we would define the terms ourselves. From now on, we would clinch the deal exclusively with our customers and nobody else.

As a startup try to deal with the customer, and the customer only.

We switched our business model to what we have today: super fast direct-to-door delivery. We thought: let’s deliver groceries like other companies deliver pizza. Our shoppers pick fresh groceries from your favourite store, and our drivers deliver directly to your door in as little as 1h. This idea sounded so simple and pure that it felt like someone had lifted a huge rock off our chests. Just us and the customers — we knew we could get that running.

What happened next was one of the most fun and eventful periods of our lives: We changed business model, we raised money, moved city, hired a great team, had good times and bad times, kept going, and kept growing — looking back it all felt like a huge “Pow!”.

Our journey feels like a big “Pow!”.

We started to realise that our name Convibo somehow didn’t feel right anymore, and yet until this point it had never crossed our mind to change it. And so it happens that sometimes, you need a push from someone else. In our case, luckily this “someone else” really knew a thing or two about branding. It was the Founders of Innocent Drinks, who had joined our company as investors. They said:

“…we really would like you to change your name (…) we don’t think the current one is working for you.”

Boom — you can’t make it much clearer. We knew that a complete rebrand would be a lot of work on top of everything else we had to do, however we also felt that they were right. As it turned out, despite it being initially hard to hear, it didn’t take much to convince us. So the next day we contacted the Innocent Drinks Founders and told them that we would do it.

The Creation of Home Run:

Finding names is hard. And if you want to do it properly it’s very hard. After all you have to find a name that does everything: from telling your vision to looking good on business cards, being clear, concise and memorable and easy to understand over the phone.

With Convibo we always had problems. People never got it (“was that Convibo or Convebo?”) and we always had to spell it out. We later learned that every time you have to help people spell, pronounce or understand your name you’re essentially apologising for it.

So this time we knew we wanted a name that everyone gets instantly. We wanted a name that you could whisper to passed out strangers at Glastonbury Medical and they would wake up remembering it.

We wanted a name that you could whisper to passed out strangers at Glastonbury Medical and they would wake up remembering it.

We approached the task like we always approach unknown territory: by reading everything we could get our hands on. A fantastic book we found was “Hello My Name is Awesome” by Alexandra Watkins — a fun and useful read. After about a month, we were confident we had come up with the right name: Convibo would soon be called Home Run. “Why Home Run?” I hear you ask — let me explain:

Why Home Run?

A disclaimer upfront: Home Run has nothing to do with baseball. We don’t play it, we don’t have a clue about the rules or how it works. Home Run, however, has more than one meaning. It’s simultaneously used to describe “a complete or unqualified success”. This is exactly the kind of feeling we want our customers to have when they order. A full shop delivered in an hour — that’s a Home Run!

However, there are more reasons why we really liked the name:

Home: A big part of our value proposition is that you can shop your groceries from home — you don’t have to go out: we do it for you. Many Londoners have a very special relationship with their home. It’s your shelter, your only private place that’s protecting from a jungle of noise and madness. When you come home after a long day, having survived a packed tube of smelly strangers, it’s just a great feeling to drop your keys, undo your pants and throw yourself onto the sofa.

What we offer to you is that you can shop from just there: your sofa, your favourite chair, your bed, your balcony or your cosy place at the window. We will pick everything for you and deliver it with care — but that’s not all:

Run: We will do that quicker than anyone else, probably even quicker than you yourself. As soon as your order comes in, our shoppers start shopping and, depending on the size of your order, you can have all of it 1–2 hours later — directly delivered to your doorstep.

The comfort of ordering from your home, the speed at which we deliver and the feeling of winning at life are captured in Home Run — neat, isn’t it?

The last thing that was missing for our rebrand was a logomark and we decided for the pineapple:

A sweet and tasty fruit with an intriguing shape. How many other fruits do you know that even made it onto pizza (I know, I know…the tomato is technically a fruit as well)? But besides the great taste and the awesome shape the pineapple also has a deeper symbolical meaning of hospitality and generosity.

Combined with our new central colour scheme — warm yellow — our baby now has a name that fits and it also tells a bit more about us parents — Home Run is sunny side up!

We hope you like our new brand as much as we do! Thanks for reading this post and if you want to celebrate with us, you can go to www.homerun.delivery and shop from our amazing variety of Champagne. Cheers to that!

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