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A non-alcoholic beverage brand creating mood-boosting sparkling social tonics with organic adaptogens, natural nootropics, and functional botanicals.

  • Female-Founded
  • Clean Ingredients
FOUNDER Evan Quinn, Cygne Cooper, & George Youmans

Behind the Brand

Hiyo started when three changemakers from SoCal – Evan Quinn, George Youmans, and Cygne Cooper – had one disruptive idea: rethink the way the world drinks.

In April of 2019, Evan and George had family members hospitalized with alcohol-related issues–an event which caused both to cut back on their drinking in solidarity with their families. In their late 20’s and social to-boot, Evan and George soon discovered the massive need for an alternative to alcohol that actually deserved its place at the table. To them, the existing choices available all felt like sacrifices: boring soda with lime, sugary, caloric mocktails, and ultra-caffeinated energy drinks…each one of them missing the main reason they wanted to drink: the feeling. 

At the time, George was working in entertainment and music marketing for Red Bull while Evan was beginning his MBA journey at UCLA Anderson after half a decade with the financial services firm, Guggenheim Partners. Intrigued by their newfound sobriety and the lack of options in the non-alcoholic beverage space, they began brainstorming ideas alongside their close friend from USC undergrad, Cygne Cooper, who was working at the time as a creative and brand marketing lead for the global media conglomerate Endeavor. This marked the genesis of Hiyo, a non-alcoholic social tonic which produces the same feeling that people usually seek from alcohol, but from healthy, functional ingredients instead.

Working alongside a medicinal herbalist and team of beverage formulators, the three co-founders spent over a year perfecting their proprietary blend of adaptogens, nootropics, and botanicals to achieve the maximum feel-good ‘float’ effect. During the end of his tenure at UCLA in late 2020, Evan entered Hiyo’s business concept into UCLA Anderon’s Knapp Venture Competition, eventually securing the $40,000 grand prize (and the confidence to launch the company to the public). 

Hiyo sold its first can in June of 2021 and has since sold out four times online and expanded into retail across the country. The beverage has been a hit with early adopters, garnering more than 1,600 5-star reviews within its first 18 months as a brand, as well as winning first place at the BevNET New Beverage Showdown ‘22 and being named a finalist in four categories of Beverage Digest’s 2023 Beverage Awards. “At the end of the day, we’re just trying to make it a little bit easier for people to drink a little bit less,” Quinn notes. “Whatever that means to them.”

Meet the Maker

What has been your most unforgettable moment (good or bad) while building your company? - +

CYGNE: There’s too many to count! But if I had to choose just one, I’d probably say our launch party. That was a day (and a crowd of people) I will truly never forget.

GEORGE: Hand-labeling 30,000 cans in Wisconsin during December.

What is your favorite thing to do in your free time? - +

CYGNE: Spend time with loved ones, cook a good meal, and get outside.

GEORGE: My official answer is spending time with my fiancé Summer and pup, Nova. My off-the-record answer is golf and beach volleyball.

What is an essential part of your daily routine? - +

CYGNE: Time with my animals (2 cats and a dog). I swear, they know more than you think!

GEORGE: Cold shower in the morning. I’m not one of the hardos that do the full cold shower – just for 90 seconds at the end to wake me up!

What is your biggest pet peeve? - +

CYGNE: Loud chewers and mouth-breathers…

GEORGE: It really bothers me when people send me an address, but it’s incomplete, so I have to plug it into Maps and figure it out myself.

What is one thing most people don’t know about you? - +

CYGNE: I come from an entrepreneurial, small business family. My great-great-grandfather on my Mom’s side started his own cement block manufacturing company in 1908, which was passed down for four generations and in business for 108 years.

GEORGE: I write poetry.

What do you want to be remembered for? - +

CYGNE: My passion for creating beauty, inciting wonder, and inspiring change.

GEORGE: Bringing out the best of those around me.

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