All Posts in News

August 13, 2019 - No Comments!

We’re crowdfunding!

A huge announcement today from Paperclip HQ...

We are entering what promises to be the most exciting phase in the history of Paperclip right now. Over the next six months, the team at Paperclip HQ will be implementing our long-awaited payment gateway, releasing completely re-written, updated Android and iPhone apps, and growing our community marketplace client base from 24 to over 60!

To fund this mission, we’ve opened a new investment round, which has so far resulted in over thirty new investors joining us, ranging from doctors and fund managers to the co-founder and former CEO of Just-Eat, David Buttress. They join an extraordinary group of investors including Go Compare founder Hayley Parsons and ex-CFO of the Financial Times, John Davis.

Not only this, but as of today, we are launching a public crowdfunding campaign on Seedrs – this will allow us onboard anyone who has ever wanted to invest in us, from as little as £12!

This may be old news to our existing users and readers of MyDreamality, who were provided both with a private link to the campaign last week. We may have already hit 65% of our target, but there is still and long way to go and plenty of time to invest in the UK's leading marketplace provider.

But why should you invest in Paperclip?
  • Record month-on-month sales: our plan to onboard as many communities as possible is well underway. July saw a large uptick in sales, with new schools, universities and other communities onboarded – the figures will continue to rise now inline with our increasingly aggressive sales campaigns.
  • Open consumer marketplace is about to take off: June saw record numbers of organic users and items added to our open consumer marketplace. After our payment gateway goes live in Autumn, we expect every month to be a record-breaking month, as Paperclip will start to transition from a community marketplace provider to a nationwide buying and selling platform. As you can imagine, adding the ability for buyers and sellers to transact electronically removes several barriers to usage – instead of buying an iPhone off someone round the corner, you’ll now be able to purchase it from someone in another city entirely. When combined with more stable Android and iPhone access, an upgraded marketing budget, and some savvy growth hacks, we thoroughly expect the open marketplace to start making waves.
invest, Seedrs, Paperclip
Paperclip founders Alan & Rich (centre) with existing investors Hayley Parsons (left) & Sarah Smith from the Development Bank of Wales (right)
  • Exciting product enhancements in the next three months: the next few months will see us add a powerful new payment gateway, which will effectively enable us to start competing with the likes of Shpock and Depop on a national scale. Our open consumer marketplace hasn’t got as much love as our community marketplaces over the past year, mainly because we have been completely rewriting and updating our Android and iPhone apps. All of this hard work is about to culminate with new product releases in August and October. We expect to see organic downloads and usage of our open marketplace start to steadily increase as of October!
  • An all-star team, positioned to scale: with a shiny new office in Cardiff city center and a talented team across all facets of product development, marketing and sales. We have an award-winning product designer (Steve), along with an experienced team comprising of several first-class graduates and a PhD; combined, this team has more than enough ability to execute our plan.

Be part of something special. Head to our Seedrs page today for more information.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

August 5, 2019 - No Comments!

Paperclip: Version 3 is go!

Here at Paperclip, we're always thinking of new ways to improve the experience for our fabulous users. Our Design and Development teams have been working tirelessly throughout the start of the year, drawing from user feedback, to create the perfect buying and selling platform. So, it is with great excitement, that we can finally reveal a shiny new version of the Paperclip marketplace...

So what's new?

The team have been working to add new features and improve the Paperclip user journey. There’s a lot more to it than meets the eye, so here’s a brief explanation of what’s new:

version, version 3, paperclip, buy, sell, swap, phone
  • Take control of your offers –you can now view and manage all your individual offers and how many views your item has had. Choose to accept, decline or message about the offer any time whilst the offer is still active.

  • Buying and selling icons - help you keep track of your activity – beforehand, all item activity was placed under one icon which was combined to be the “trading centre”. After listening to feedback, it was clear that this was too confusing for users.

  • Notifications all in one place -  now your messages and notifications are under one icon for a cleaner and clearer user experience.

  • Add item listings into a chat – remind your buyer/seller what item you are discussing by featuring it in your messaging thread and provide further photos if needed rather than changing your original listing.

Speaking about the new improvements to the platform, our Front-end Developer Harry said, "With the new version, Paperclip has taken invaluable feedback given by our user base and used it to make our marketplaces even better. We've revolutionized the trading experience with an aim to put ease of use at it's forefront, whilst supercharging their ability to monitor and interact with other buyers and sellers with speed and clarity across an altogether more streamlined platform."

Marketing Manager Justin added, "It's great to have the new version of the marketplace up and running before our busy Fresher's period! The feedback we had from our users has shaped Version 3 and we're really grateful for those who took the time to tell us what they loved (and what they didn't) about V2."

version 3, version, buy, sell, swap, paperclip
The new Buying and Selling screens

Whether you are a student, or a member of the global marketplace, we want to thank you for your feedback which has enabled us improve the Paperclip user experience. We're constantly looking for ways to expand the platform and give you more of what you want, so feel free to get in touch with your thoughts at: hello@paperclip.co

Keep up the latest news from Paperclip HQ, follow us on Facebook.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in New Feature, News

July 24, 2019 - No Comments!

Introducing Paperclip school marketplaces

Since the launch of our first university marketplaces last year, Paperclip HQ has been bombarded with requests for a new platform enabling school parents to buy and sell items for themselves or their children in a safe environment.

In short: you spoke, we listened.

After doing some digging online, we found that in a recent survey, almost half of parents stated that they had concerns about the cost of kitting out their children for the new academic year. That's no surprise considering things like uniform, classroom equipment and PE kit can quickly add up, with parents on average spending £250 on each of their children!

Paperclip set out to solve the problem faced by parents across the country. We wanted to create a platform that would save parents time and money, foster a sense of community and most importantly, ensure that children have all they need for school.

Building the school marketplace

Soon our Design and Dev' teams began working on safe and easy-to-use platform designed with the busy lives of parents in mind. Like our university marketplaces, we wanted their schools counterparts to be customised for who it'd be serving. This would allow for schools and colleges to have their own branding and colour scheme for the marketplace, as well as their own choice of URL.

Within a few weeks, we were testing the new platform internally. After some minor tweaks (and a few sleepless nights) we are able to announce Paperclip school marketplaces open for business!

On the new platform, parents can make offers on items from other parents nearby, or can add their own items for sale, swap or collection. The marketplace allows buyers and sellers to communicate via. our in-built messaging service, where they can agree terms of the trade themselves.

school, schools, parents, paperclip marketplace
Try our school marketplace FREE for a full year

Like the global, corporate and university marketplaces, our school platforms allow users to join and create their own micro-marketplaces. These smaller marketplace groups can be based on interests, school year or just for general hobbies.

How to get started

You can get started in minutes, and it's totally FREE!

Creating a marketplace for your school could not be easier, all you need to do is follow the steps below:

1.) Complete the sign-up form
2.) Receive your marketplace within 48 hours
3.) Promote the marketplace to parents (don't worry we have you covered!)

Upon receipt of your marketplace, you’ll receive a guide on how to get the most out of the marketplace as well as some marketing material you can use to help spread the word around school!

Good to know

For every school that signs up before 31 July 2019, we will provide a FREE marketplace for the entire academic year. The trial ends 31 July 2020.

Paperclip takes care of the everyday running and maintenance of the marketplace. This includes; answering questions, solving problems and moderating the site. You just need to let your parents know about it.

With all our school marketplaces; safety and security are our key priorities. With a number of verification checks in place you can rest assured we'll keep you safe online.

Oh, and our legal team have assisted in ensuring that all of our data handling processes are completely GDPR-compliant.

Don't delay, register for a free marketplace today!

Published by: Paperclip HQ in New Feature, News

July 11, 2019 - 1 comment.

Saving students throughout the summer

University might be over for the year, but our student marketplace users can still take advantage of a huge range of exclusive student deals and discounts...

Last term, users up and down the country made use of discount codes for theme parks, hotels and beach wear in preparation for summer 2019. This month we're back with a whole host of exciting new student deals.

Through our partners at StudentBeans, our student marketplace users can now enjoy a tasty 30% off their bill at Pizza Express nationwide! Mains, desserts and drinks are all covered making it a perfect treat for those lazy Summer afternoons. To access the deal, just head to the 'Deals and Discounts' section on your marketplace homepage and follow the link.

Whilst you're there, take advantage of a massive 50% off all items at online fashion retailer I Saw It First!

saving, savings
Enjoy 50% off at I Saw It First

The talk of the town since their collaboration with ITV's Love Island, I Saw It First add hundreds of new styles to their website every week. Follow the link and enjoy half price off everything in stock today.

Due to popular demand, we've also extended the the free Amazon Prime deal for the rest of the Summer. This gives student users a huge six month of Student Prime totally free. Users can enjoy next day delivery on millions of items, stream thousands of movies and TV shows as well as getting access to even more exclusive student offers!

Selected student marketplaces can also get a free toothbrush set at Brushbox or a tidy 15% discount when they go direct to the Farah website.

But that's not all...

From Monday, users of our UCL and Brunel Union marketplaces can also enjoy an exclusive discount code for applicable for all active wear products at the online retailer Distance.

Next month, university marketplace users will be treated to a fresh set of deals and discounts including money off food, apparel and more!

Keep up to date with the latest news from Paperclip HQ by following us on Twitter.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in New Feature, News

May 2, 2019 - No Comments!

Giving students more of what they want…

It's been another exciting month at Paperclip HQ. As well as developing new, exciting features for our iOS and Android mobile app. The Paperclip team have been busy adding some great new benefits to our student marketplaces.

More deals, more discounts

As the all important Summer term begins, our university marketplace users can now enjoy a whole heap of discounts and freebies, courtesy of our partners at Student Beans.
On top of offering all student users a free Amazon Prime account for six months, students can now enjoy money off theme park tickets, holidays and more!
With one eye on the Summer holidays, our university marketplace users can now access discounts for all holiday bookings made at hotels.com! Not only this, but students can get to work on their base-tan early by enjoying 15% at Skinny Tan.

With this in mind, the Paperclip Marketing Team hit the road to let students at our client unis in on the good news.

deals, discounts
SBA Jo & our COO Alan at LSBSU

At this week's LSBSU outreach day, Marketing Manager Justin said "With Summer fast approaching, it's great to be able offer students these new deals and discounts. Partnering with Student Beans allows us to offer more of what our users want; great offers at brands popular with the student demographic. We are always looking to add value to both our marketplaces and the student experience more generally."

As of the start of the month, students can also enjoy discounted tickets at Thorpe Park as well as money off MyProtein products too!

deals, discounts
SBA Steph & Team Leader Rebecca at Sheffield SU

Speaking at Monday's student outreach day, Rebecca, our new SBA Team Leader for the Sheffield Student Marketplace said, "We're getting some great feedback on the new deals and discounts offered on the Sheffield marketplace. It's encouraging to see so many of the student community here sign-up and take advantage of the offers. We had a great response from our Amazon and Just Eat promotions back at our February launch, so it's great to follow up with even more benefits to new and existing users."

With the new PaperclipHQ office almost ready and an huge textbook campaign about to launch across our client unis, stay tuned to the Paperclip blog for more exciting developments this month.

Check out our favourite items on the global marketplace by following us on Instagram.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

March 25, 2019 - No Comments!

More new ‘Clips: Introducing Jess and Hannah…

Last week we met our new Marketing Coordinators Tara and Lorenzo. Today we welcome our new Interns Hannah and Jess to the Paperclip family...

What made you apply to our Internship programme?

Hannah: After completing an earlier work experience programme in marketing, I became really interested in the field and wanted to learn more. I found Paperclip and was really interested in the company. I saw that they were looking for a marketing intern so I applied straightaway!

Jess: My degree requires me to complete a work-based placement and I wanted to gain more experience as I really want to work in marketing after finishing university.

What have you been doing prior to your placement?

Hannah: I ’m currently a final year student at Cardiff University studying English Literature. I’ve always loved literature and reading between the lines so this course was perfect for me and has set me up with some great skills that I can take with me for future jobs.

interns, intern, Paperclip
Hannah

Jess: I am currently studying Journalism at the University of South Wales The course has given me a broad insight into the media industry and has set me with many skills. My journey into discovering marketing was when I applied for Cardiff TV, expecting to create hard news stories, instead I was given a lot more promotional work. I was covering events happening in Cardiff from Charities to entertainment and I thoroughly enjoyed promoting organisations and people’s message.

What do you want to achieve here at Paperclip?

Jess: In the future I hope to travel to a few more places and bag myself a full-time job in marketing. I think Paperclip is a great stepping stone for me to gain the appropriate skills ready for the marketing world.

interns, intern
Jess

Hannah: I’m hoping to pursue a career in marketing and communications, so my internship here at Paperclip is providing me with the necessary experience to be able to achieve this in the future.

What do you do in your free time?

Jess: In my free time I sometimes draw and paint and I love to plan holidays and write for my blog. I train a lot in the gym and train children in cheerleading. I’m on my way to becoming a Level 1 Cheer Coach.

Hannah: I like to curl up with a glass of wine and a good book. I also like to watch true crime and nature documentaries, so Netflix is my best friend!

Want to keep up to date with latest news from Paperclip HQ? Follow us on Facebook.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

March 18, 2019 - No Comments!

Meet the new ‘Clips: say hello to Lorenzo and Tara…

We're only a few weeks into the year and we already have five new additions to the team at Paperclip HQ! Today we're meeting Tara and Lorenzo, our new Marketing Coordinators...

It's great to have you on board! Tell us a bit about your background...

Lorenzo: I study Translation with minor studies in International Marketing at my university in Italy. The reason why I chose this university is that I have always been passionate about languages, communication and travelling. I have also lived in Denmark as an exchange student for a year, and that helped me realize that I wanted to get more international experiences, so here I am!

Tara: I studied advertising design at USW. I was a strategic planning executive at a media agency previously in Bristol. I have had internships in account handling and planning too.

starter
Tara
What made you apply for the role?

Tara: I applied because I have always wanted to work in Cardiff and my previous job experience had been in a marketing role. I’ve had internships in advertising and marketing and thought I'd be suited to this position.T

Lorenzo: Every student in my university has to do an internship before graduating, and it can be done locally or abroad. I’ve always been quite open-minded, so I wanted to challenge myself and try and get a real internship that would really help me improve my skills while working on something cool. Looking around erasmusintern.org I found Paperclip and I applied. It was exactly what I was looking for!

What do you want to achieve during your time with Paperclip?

Tara: I want to combine my love for creative projects with my interest in marketing and work closely with a small team dynamic and see the company achieve its targets and continue to grow.

Lorenzo: My goal in life is to get enough experience to create my own company. Ideally, I would like to live in Italy, but who knows?

starter
Lorenzo
And what do you get up to in your spare time?

Tara: I play hockey three times a week and enjoy going to the gym, but in contrast I also enjoy eating/drinking cocktails out a lot too.

Lorenzo: Reading is something that takes a lot of my time: I enjoy books related to marketing and startups, but also fiction. Other than that, I like walking and hanging out with friends: I am a very chatty person, I very much enjoy being surrounded with people and talk about many different topics.

It's great to have you on our team! Good luck in your new roles.

Make sure you follow us on Twitter to keep updated on the latest updates from Paperclip HQ.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

March 12, 2019 - No Comments!

Empowering tomorrow’s entrepreneurs…

Good afternoon blogosphere!

It's been a busy start to the year at Paperclip HQ. Not only have we launched two more university marketplaces (details to follow), but we have also partnered with the Keele University Entrepreneurial Society to promote their campus marketplace.

The new partnership allows members of the society to gain valuable work experience through Paperclip, either working as part of the Student Brand Ambassador team or Student Researchers, with the aim of growing the marketplace’s userbase and generating feedback from our existing users.

Since the Keele student marketplace launched in September 2018, over 1,200 students (12% of the student population) have already signed up. Users have access to the hundreds of items on the marketplace along with some exclusive students deals.
Alongside the work experience opportunities for students of Keele’s Entrepreneurial Society, Paperclip are also sponsoring the society's on-campus events.

Kayode steps in...

Yesterday, the team helped arrange a guest lecture from entrepreneur and BBC's The Apprentice finalist Kayode Damali. Needless to say, the event was a sell-out and the team were delighted to help inspire the next generation of entrepreneurs.

Keele. Apprentice, Paperclip, Ent
Kayode and Laurence hanging out before the big event

Speaking about the new partnership, society President Lucy Whitehouse said "The Keele Entrepreneurship Society is a student led society that aims to aid and nurture young entrepreneurs. The society provides weekly workshops that focus on elements of entrepreneurship such as accounting, marketing and Companies House admin. All of our members have access to one to one sessions to work on their business plans and work skills.
The Entrepreneurship society partnered with Paperclip, as they offered opportunities that would develop our members’ skill set and enhance their CVs. Paperclip has sponsored events and given our members the opportunity to gain valuable work experience and also paid part time work - both of which will help our members in the future!"

Speaking after the event, Paperclip CMO Laurence added, "It was a pleasure to meet our new Ent' Soc' Brand Ambassador team and to chat to Kayode. The feedback from the event has been great and we really look forward to supporting the society and the great work they do throughout the year."

Would you university benefit from a campus marketplace? Get in touch here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

January 17, 2019 - No Comments!

Paperclip hit Queen Mary Refreshers

Welcome to the first update of 2019!

2018 was a busy year for Paperclip and we haven't slowed down since. The team at HQ have been busy building new marketplaces for our university and corporate clients as well as adding new exclusive offers and discounts for student users.

This week, the Marketing Team headed to central London for the Queen Mary University of London Refresher's event to promote the QMSU Paperclip marketplace.

queen mary, su

The Ambassador Team in party mode at Queen Mary!

Every year, thousands of students flock to the Queen Mary Students Union to join societies, clubs and take advantage of the student deals available through the SU's corporate partners.

More new faces...

Over the Christmas break, we have been adding to the Queen Mary Brand Ambassador  team, with second year IT student Oghosa and third year Maths students Gurdeep joining the ranks.

Oghosa, originally from Essex, said "I am thrilled to be joining the team. I had heard about the marketplace from some of my friends around campus and when I learned that I could make some extra cash from promoting the marketplace around uni, I was keen to get involved."

Speaking after the event, Paperclip Marketing Manager Justin said "It was a great event and we are pleased to be adding another 200 plus new users to the Queen Mary SU marketplace. Though today was really busy, it proved a good opportunity to connect with the students we didn't get to speak to during Fresher's week and those enrolling in January."

What's next for Team Paperclip?

Over the coming weeks, the Paperclip team will be attending similar events to promote our student marketplaces at Keele University, Imperial College London, University of Southampton and more. We will also be attending Refresher's events at two new brand new client universities at different ends of the country. Check out next week's blog to find out which universities have joined the Paperclip family.

Could your university benefit from a bespoke student marketplace? Get in touch here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

December 27, 2018 - No Comments!

Paperclip Year in Review: 2018

It's been another exciting year here at Paperclip HQ...

The award-winning marketplace provider

Back in the Spring, the team were delighted to hear that Paperclip, along with some other great businesses in the region, had been shortlisted for a coveted Cardiff Life Award. A few weeks later, we headed to Cardiff City Hall where, to our surprise, we took the gold!

As the awards season rolled on, we were shortlisted for a South Wales Business Award, a Wales Startup Award and nominated for two WalesOnline Digital Awards. Though we finished runner-up in the latter, we had a great time networking with local business leaders, community organisers and even some celebs too!

Nigel Owens presents Sebastiano, Ana, Rich and Laurence with the Cardiff Life Award

And it didn't stop there, earlier this month we also received confirmation from AI Global Media that we had been named this year's SME News Business Elite's Leading Digital Trading Company of the Year UK.

Stepping into Higher Education

By far our most exciting news is that we have partnered with not one, not two but twenty different UK universities. Starting with University College London, we were able to build on our success to deliver bespoke marketplace for students at Brunel, King's College and five other London universities. Over the summer, we were able to add both Oxford and Cambridge SUs to our roster before the big launch at the start of the 2018/19 academic year.

News of our unique marketplace solution spread rapidly, and before long, we were launching online student markets from across the country, from Keele SU in the north of England to Southampton SU on the south coast.

Student deals

More than just a platform for swapping old textbooks, we wanted our student marketplaces to help in day-to-day university life. We spent the summer months reaching out to a number of great brands, to offer our users a heap of exclusive deals and discounts. Not only do students get the opportunity to earn cash when they add their first item, but they also qualify for a free return coach journey from our friends at Snap.

At selected universities, we also offer students a free JustEat voucher as well as a free two month trial with tastecard.

Not only this, but  we were able to give out tickets to the X-Factor Live Final at the SSE Wembely Arena, London as prizes for new users.

Competiton winners Rhianne and Al

Brand Ambassador Rhianne and competition winner Alice at the X-Factor Live Final

Our marketplaces also champion local businesses and university societies, providing them with a space to showcase their own deals, discounts and student events.

Growing the team

With so much going on, we decided that we had to strengthen our team...

Back in August, we welcomed our Graduate Marketing Officer Justin to the team. Justin, who has a degree in Business and Marketing, joined us from nearby Swansea University, where he had been working with us to promote the Swansea School of Management marketplace throughout the previous academic year.

We quickly put the new hire to work, and over the last few months, Justin has been travelling up and down the country running student outreach and promo days at our client campuses. Focusing on growing our user base, Justin has also been spreading the good word about our student deals and collecting valuable user feedback as continue to improve our platforms.

We also had the pleasure of welcoming two interns from the European Student Placement Agency (ESPA). Our first was Jacob from Spain, who worked closely with Laurence and Ana on university marketing campaigns. He was quickly followed by Sebastiano from Italy who worked on sales, marketing and prospecting new universities for us to reach out to. Speaking eight languages between them, both interns hit the ground running and surpassed all expectations during their brief spell with us.

Working on campus

With so many universities on board and so little time to promote the marketplaces on campus, we began the mother of all recruitment campaigns...

Over the Summer months, Laurence and Justin set about building a team of Student Brand Ambassadors at every client university. Looking for fun, outgoing and enthusiastic students, we began assembling our squads in time for a chaotic Fresher's schedule.

In the end, we weren't disappointed. A combination of hard work and organisation meant we were able to onboard thousands of students to our marketplaces and get them to take advantage of our exclusive deals and discounts.

Our Ambassadors Lucy and Madiyyah at Queen Mary SU

As the term progressed, hundreds of items were being uploaded to each marketplace and we began to see real organic growth on our platforms.

Also, utilising his connections from his days at Swansea University, Justin was able to spearhead a project to take on a number of student interns. The students are all studying Business, Leadership and Marketing and their work with us will compliment their modules at uni. The interns will work on generating valuable user feedback and growing the existing SoM marketplace.

Creating Paperclip Version 3

It's been a busy year for our Design and Development teams too!

Throughout 2018, we have been quietly working on creating a third version of the marketplace. With all the same great features as versions gone by, we have been working on a faster, more responsive experience more suited to the end user. Taking note of user feedback, we were able to provide a smarter marketplace available on iOS, Android and desktop.

Read all about it...

Not only have Paperclip been featured in national newspaper the Daily Express, but we also found our way onto the WalesOnline Tech 35 companies to watch!

We have also been featured on The Wallet Moth, Savvy Dad and our founders Rich and Alan, made it onto the WalesOnline 35 under 35!

*NB: A huge thank-you to our friends Lynsey and Beth at FD Comms who have worked tirelessly to help raise our profile over the last few month and years.

Money matters

It has been another exciting year in terms of investment and adding new faces to our board.

Back in February, Paperclip completed our third round of funding. This was led by existing investor the Development Bank of Wales, with additional funding from a consortium of angels including GoCompare founder Hayley Parsons, the ex-CFO of the Financial Times John Davis, and Tim Ward, who was part of the team that sold Friends Reunited to ITV back in 2015.

In November, we launched round four. With a stronger platform and a more experienced team, we have been able to secure funding from investors based all over the globe. We expect to close the round in early 2019, stay tuned for further announcements...

2019 and beyond!

It's been a busy year at Paperclip HQ; thousands of new users, dozens of partnerships and scores of new hires. But as we well know, time stops for no app.

After a well-deserved Christmas break, the next few months will be focused on closing our current investment round and growing our user base, both on the global marketplace and on our university marketplaces.  Read more

Published by: Paperclip HQ in General musings, News, Perspective