Introducing ‘lolligift’, The first incubation from 8ninths

Dec 9, 2008 | 8ninths | Mobile & Web | Tech News

Dear Friends & Family of 8ninths,

Today we’re very happy to announce the Friends & Family Beta of lolligift, the first incubation to be released from the 8ninths lab.


We’ve taken all that we know about building great software in a large company and trimmed the fat. In just a few short months we’ve taken an idea, built a brand, developed a business model, and today we’d like to share our work with you.

This is the 8ninths model. We are idea guys who live and breathe the web. We have many projects in the pipeline, and as they mature and graduate from the lab, we’ll be seeking investment to grow them to their full potential.

Over the next few months we will be testing lolligift by getting the word out, listening to you, our first users and tuning the business model. So…..



lolligift is the fun, affordable and secure way for friends to pool their money and buy a dream gift for a special occasion.

An Organizer creates a Gift Pool for a friend they have in mind, invites other friends to participate by making a contribution and the rest is handled by lolligift. You can chat with friends on the Gift Pool page, make a payment by credit card (PayPal coming soon) and sign an eCard that will be delivered when the target goal has been reached. The organizer then closes the Gift Pool and we’ll mail them a check or deposit funds into their account via PayPal. How and where you shop is totally up to you. You have the funds and you can buy online or head to the mall!

Take the 30 second tour and find out how lolligift can save you time and money this holiday season. Then Come On Back! We need your help!

Try lolligift!

It can be a small gift or a large gift, doesn’t matter. Create Gift Pools for your own holiday presents, birthday gifts, office parties and any other gifting need. Kick the tires, forward this mail to your friends (Currently US only) .

To get started Invite your friends into a Gift Pool (We’ll include a link to this page explaining the beta).

Report problems, ideas, and suggestions

With any new software there’s likely to be bugs. To put your mind at ease, everything should be working just fine. Your credit card security and privacy is our first and foremost priority, handled securely by PayPal. We’ll obviously be keeping a very close eye on things and you have our word that we will be very responsive with any problems that are reported.

There’s some fit and finish work we’ll be doing to polish up some rough edges in the weeks to come but we’d rather get lolligift in your hands now for the holiday period and hear directly from you than assume we got everything right.

Tell us what you like, tell us what you don’t like, critique, suggest and generally share your honest opinions and experiences with us. In the bottom right hand corner you will see a little green feedback logo like this: en-green-corner-low-right2.gif

This is a very simple way for you to report a bug, or throw us a quick idea or suggestion without interrupting what you’re doing. You can also send us an email at For other questions please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions .


We know how busy each of you are and we don’t make this ask frivolously. We believe lolligift is a great choice for responsible, smart gifting this holiday season and we’d love to have an opportunity to show you why. As an added incentive we’ll be running at cost during the beta period and all you will pay is a small credit card processing fee for making a contribution.

And Finally…..Thank you

Not to get all mushy here but we sincerely want to thank each and every one of you for your support, friendship, advice and well wishes over the last few months. Even with all the uncertainties, risks, long nights and tightening of the belt loops we’re both in agreement that we’ve never been happier.

When you find a way of spending your time that makes you that happy you know you’re doing something worthwhile.

With that we wish you all a very happy holidays and hope that you’ll be lucky enough that your nearest and dearest will lolligift you this year ☺!

Yours Sincerely

Adam & William

lolligift co-founders

Article End
  1. Dec 12, 2008 at 4:46 am

    Ian Gilman says:

    Congratulations! Looks like a wonderful project! It’s an interesting variant of the “fund and release” model often used for micropatronage projects (something I have a bit of an interest in). I look forward to seeing how it goes!

  2. Dec 15, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    adam says:

    Many thanks for the kind words Ian and thanks for the link to Micropatronage!

  3. Dec 15, 2008 at 9:18 pm



  4. Dec 15, 2008 at 9:41 pm

    adam says:

    Thanks MaryJane! Very much appreciate the well wishes!

  5. Dec 21, 2008 at 2:01 pm

    Andreas says:

    I am sorry, but you lost me, as a user, when it became clear that you’re holding on to funds. Forget that. I am not in the business of funding somebody else’s business by giving them my money so they can collect interest.

    Well, apart from my bank of course, but that’s a necessary evil. Lolligift isn’t.

    Apologies for being a grinch about this. I think the idea in itself is cute and fulfills a need. Personally I’d expect success to come from a facebook app, rather than yet another standalone social application. But as I’ve said for me the fact that you’re keeping the cash on hold is an instant deal killer.

  6. Dec 25, 2008 at 2:20 am

    william says:

    Thanks for your comment Andreas. You are certainly right to be concerned about the business practices of merchants who “charge first, ship later.” While it’s certainly true that lolligift processes the contributor’s credit card when they elect to contribute, as that’s the only effective way to ensure committed contributions, the fund is immediately available for the organizer to collect. If contributors such as yourself are concerned that we are holding on to the funds, you can contribute at the very last minute before the organizer collects the fund. Each pool has a deadline that the organizer sets, and we do notify contributors in advance of pool closing.

    The reason organizers may want to set a non-zero contribution period is just to make the collection process work better. Not everyone can be reached at once, and even when notified friends may want to think things over and chat with one another on the Gift Pool page before contributing. The collection period is just a
    sensible way for the organizer to deal with these situations. Again, we don’t delay the processing for the purpose of holding onto the money.

    Warren Buffet, the well-respected investor extraordinaire, is famous for buying into businesses that receive cash up front, only to pay out much later. Examples include insurance companies, for insurance premiums flows in up front, and only if the insured event occurs (not when, but if) do they need to be paid out. In the meantime, he uses the cash collected and his incredible investment acumen to generate additional income.

    I bring Warren Buffet up because I only wish we have such a profitable business model at lolligift! Unlike Mr. Buffet, our pay out events are only a few weeks out at the very most. Typically, human nature takes over and contributors pay at the last minute before the event. So we don’t really have the time horizon of an
    insurance policy. And obviously, we are certainly no Sage of Omaha, and can’t possibly expect to generate income close to his historical returns!

    To end on a serious note, we take the contributed money very seriously. lolligift’s fiscal policy is strictly that collected funds from contributors are kept in a separate cash account, ready to be paid out at a moment’s notice. We do not use the collected cash in any shape or form to operate our business. Nothing
    offends our senses more than the likes of Bernard Madoff, the famed “investor” whose fraud has been in the press the last few weeks, who used new incoming funds to pay out the exits of old investors. I can personally assure you that nothing of that sort happens at lolligift, and it never will as long as Adam and I are running the company.


    William Lai

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