Atlanta Founder Stories: Chris Rich, Founder of Hawque

Startup Atlanta
4 min readApr 20, 2021

In a world where the need of security might feel more pervasive, Chris Rich the founder and CEO of Hawque has developed a unique solution to help organizers secure events and other special occasions. Hawque is a service where you can hire guards, police and bodyguards for realtor open house showings, event security, property security, close protection. In this month’s edition of #AtlantaFounderStories, we learned more about Chris and his journey in entrepreneurship.

Introducing Chris Rich

Originally from a small town in Alabama near Montgomery, Chris has traveled the world growing up as a self-proclaimed military brat before settling down in Atlanta about six years ago. Driven by a need to make a change and help others around him, Chris shared how passion for community helped him break into entrepreneurship.

“Every time I think on how I got into entrepreneurship; I never knew that’s what it was called.
I also always did things from a social impact perspective (excluding investments) when I think back. Current startups and HPG.GLOBAL were all originated from either a bad personal experience or seeing a need to help my community and others.”

Despite his clear desire to make an impact on the lives others, building his startup was no easy ride. From the bad to the good of starting two companies, Hawque and Hawque Protection Group, Chris revealed how important it is to have the relationship capital and support by being part of the entrepreneur community here in Atlanta, specifically mentioning his involvement with Goodie Nation’s cohorts throughout the last couple of years.

“I think without that support structure, it would have been even more lonely during the hard days that comes with running your own business. It’s vital to have a support system that can relate to what your either going through or about to go through as an entrepreneur. There are surely ups and downs to it beyond the minimal exit stories you hear about.”

Having this strong support system carried Chris and his team through the volatility and uncertainty of COVID-19. When we asked what changes he has had to make to his business, he discussed an unexpected pivot to a more hyper-focused approach on meeting his customer’s needs:

“COVID-19 really forced our team to become even more hyper focused around our customer segment for our mobile apps (real estate/realtors). We were forced to pivot, which created HPG.GLOBAL, co-founded by Patrick Kane and myself, due to the high demand of licensed contractual security and protection. This was a result of the unrest and police defund movement which as of a result, created very high demand (off app) for our additional security services (personal protection, investigations and more). COVID-19 was a blessing and a curse business wise as it slowed Hawque and our traction down but at the same time it helped us see where the client demand really was and where our focus should be from a platform perspective and white glove approach, with Hawque Protection Group, so now we are very excited for 2021 with our new strategy.”

Hawque Protection Group Logo

All the hard times didn’t come without accomplishment, in our one-on-one with Chris we also took a look back at some of the wins that he had during the last year including a feature in Forbes, being a guest speaker at Atlanta Startup Week, exciting new partnerships and traction with bigger and better customers. Through it all, Chris puts his team at the center of these successes, remembering the people and experiences that led him up to this point.

“Never would have imagined a small town guy like me would be on Forbes shortly after our launch. That made a lot of people back at my hometown very proud as I represent a village of proud people and family. Next, I would say would be Hawque’s new partnership with the Beverly Carter Foundation to help make realtors safer during open home showings. Also, the onboarding of some of the most notable clients in Atlanta during Covid for HPG.GLOBAL. Who would have imagined that would have happened? Lastly, our team as they are amazing, and we are really a family.”

When asked what he’s looking forward to for the remainder of the year, Chris and the Hawque team are full steam ahead on their plans for expansion of Hawque usership in the realtor space while growing their client base for HPG.GLOBAL which comprises of commercial properties and developers, athletes, celebrities, politicians, film studios and companies for our services. In a sentence, Chris described his outlook for the remainder of the year as “Very optimistic for 2021!”

Thanks for sharing your story with us Chris! For more exciting stories of the founders that are making our Atlanta startup community so special, share this story and stay tuned at

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