Sugr Wants to be Your Guide to Milwaukee
It seems as though there is a new bar, restaurant, concert or happening springing up in Milwaukee every night. With the rapid pace at which the Cream City moves it’s nearly impossible to keep up with every development, but a new app created by a Milwaukee native aims to help.
Ruben Flores, founder and CEO of Sugr, sees his app as a means of connection. The app doesn’t only focus on connecting people with each other- it also aims to connect people with businesses that can be beneficial to them, and create partnerships between institutions, organizations, and businesses.
“We’re all a part of a bigger group,” Flores says. “In some ways I feel like the downfall of humanity is us being selfish enough to believe we’re special, but we’re all a part of a group. I think that’s an empowering thing about us all.”
Sugr’s main focus revolves around three concepts: places, events and deals. First, the app is part content distributor, creating and aggregating videos, photos, articles and guides focused on Milwaukee’s restaurant and nightlife scene. Secondly, the app provides a ticketing service for local events. Third, the app boasts a service similar to Groupon, which introduces users to new local businesses with inexpensive deals. The overarching goal is for Sugr to become a one-stop shop for everything local, and get people more involved in the city that they live in.
“How do we inspire people to be more proactive?” Flores says. “To demand a higher quality of living and a higher standard for the people and places we interact with.”
When opening the Sugr app you are greeted by the company’s mascot, a colorful flashing gummy bear. From there you see a cleanly-organized directory of channels that include a list of daily happenings around town, a spotlight on a particular restaurant or business, a feature on a specific Milwaukee neighborhood and a recommended place to take a weekend trip, among others.
The interface purposefully uses clickable channels as opposed to the scrolling newsfeed prevalent in most social media apps. Flores’ intention was to create an immersive experience, and likens the app to, “a candy platter that allows you to pick out what you want,” as opposed to a feed, which many people have learned to mindlessly scroll through.
Sugr recently launched in the Apple app store, after an initial test launch with only 50 users. It is steadily growing its user base, and is in talks about forming partnerships with a diverse list of local businesses.
Flores sees millennials as the app’s target market, and views them as being an extremely difficult demographic to please. He wants Sugr to be an intuitive and fruitful way to connect these users with experiences. Accomplishing that goal and connecting consumers and businesses will not only strengthen the Milwaukee community, but also build a heightened sense of local pride.