Coffee Shop!

cdnmapleleaf11

New member
Sep 29, 2005
1
0
Windsor, Ontario Canada
Hello everyone, Iam new to the forums and I have a couple of questions.

First thing, Iam a 19 year old college student currenly taking "Honours In Business Administration". Although Iam only 19 for the 3-4 years Ive been wanting to start my own coffee shop. And it wasnt until last year when i actually started to plan out stuff. The more and longer i planned, ,the more i relized im going to need a partner. So what im looking for, if you dont mind, is ideas comments, and what not.

I want to make a genral coffee shop where people can hangout, enjoy themselves, read the paper, have a coffee, catch up with old friendsm type of thing, i want to focus more on the people, and just make there stay an enjoyable and unforgtable one. But most people think because im not they dont take me to serious, but i just shrug it off. Im not trying to be rich liek starbucks or tim hortons, i just want to be able to maek a living. And see people enjoy themselves.

I dont know....comments, ideas, suggestions, would greatly be appreciated.

Thanks
cdnmapleleaf11
 

topher

Super Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2003
3,736
13
Boca Raton
you don't want to be rich...you just want to(barely) make a living...man you picked the right business to be in...just kidding(sort of) Good luck
 

javaluva

New member
May 15, 2005
51
0
USA
ha! the only thing that can be rich in my shop is the coffee! Do what you want to do, ignore the ones that think your crazy. You have to be happy, and if making coffee makes you happy, well...go for it. A lot of people told me I was insane, and actually talked me out of it for three years, because they said it wouldn't go, but finally I did my own thing, and have been open for 6 years. It's the greatest thing, first thing in the morning, when I walk in, and it is sooo quiet, that I can take a moment, and say...WOW this is all mine!
 

cindy

New member
Feb 8, 2005
159
0
South Africa
if youre worried that people think your too young...STOP STRESSING ABOUT IT!!!


i am 20 years of age and i dont see myself as a 20 year old with dreams of making a living and or, becoming a millionaire coffee merchant....i see myself as someone planning for my future and being happy above all.

now, dont ever think of your age...especially around your staff, which will probably be older than you.
just keep in mind....that if they knew better in their "old age" you would be working for them and not the other way around.

what you should do is go out and visit every coffee shop you know of.
write down something about each coffee shop that would make you want to come back for a second cup of coffee.
use this info and plan yours around these concepts.


let me know if its going to work out! :lol:
 

blackjava

New member
Nov 5, 2005
33
0
Canada
I can tell you, I've been seriously considering a small shop where I can roast my own and sell coffee. Nothing big. If you can find a small shop in the right location, coffee is definetly a good business to be in.
there is about a 2000% markup on a cup of coffee. So if you're serious, maybe find a good friend or another student that you get along well with and give it a serious look. You don't have to start big. Coffee and dunkers is all you need to start.

Good luck
 

cafemakers

New member
Nov 3, 2004
576
0
blackjava said:
there is about a 2000% markup on a cup of coffee.

Really? Is this meant to be an exaggeration or are you planning on selling a cup of coffee with a $.65 cost of goods sold for $13.00? I would think that around 500% would be more reasonable.
 

blackjava

New member
Nov 5, 2005
33
0
Canada
Actually it's not an exageration. However, I was only talking about the cup of coffee.
Consider that you get a "minimum" 50 cups of coffee from a pound of coffee. If you taste the stuff they serve in resteraunts, its probably closer to 75 cups. A coffee shop buys a pound of coffee for no more than about $2.00 a pound. So that's $0.04 per cup. So even if the shop pays $3 a pound your still looking at $0.06 and that leaves you room to drop your cup of coffee top maybe $1.50

So, you buy a pound of coffee for $3. You sell that pound for $75.
That's actually a 2500% markup.
So now figure how many cups you need to sell to break even.
Why do you think Starbucks are so big.
The money is in the coffee.

Am I wrong?
 

cafemakers

New member
Nov 3, 2004
576
0
Wow, those are some pretty amazing numbers - things must have really changed in Canada since I emigrated to the USA!

Here, 1lb of coffee yields approximately 32 8oz cups of coffee using the SCAA Golden Cup standard of 1oz of ground coffee for 2 8oz servings (16 fl oz) of liquid coffee. This "perfect world" equation assumes no product waste.

Assuming the normal wholesale market price of US$6-$7 from any reputable roaster that I know of in Hawaii or on the mainland ($18-$20 here for 100% Kona!) per pound of roasted specialty coffee, that's about $.20 for coffee alone, add on another $.10 for the combination of a cup and lid. Now, I haven't even added in other direct costs of goods sold, such as dairy, sugar, stir sticks, water & treatment or anything else that can be allocated to this single beverage, but at twenty five times this base cost, your 8oz drink is selling at US$7.50.

Where exactly are you getting your figures?
 

blackjava

New member
Nov 5, 2005
33
0
Canada
cafemakers said:
Wow, those are some pretty amazing numbers - things must have really changed in Canada since I emigrated to the USA!

Here, 1lb of coffee yields approximately 32 8oz cups of coffee using the SCAA Golden Cup standard of 1oz of ground coffee for 2 8oz servings (16 fl oz) of liquid coffee. This "perfect world" equation assumes no product waste.

Assuming the normal wholesale market price of US$6-$7 from any reputable roaster that I know

Never mind any costs associated with the business of giving the cup of coffee to your customer. What I have been talking about is only the cost of the coffee itself. You have to start from there.
I will grant you your 8 oz cup. Most sources quote a 6 oz. cup. And if you check the so called cups in your home coffee pot you will find that is what you get.
Ok, now I don't think you or I will judge who is or isn't a reputable roaster.
I know of 2 sources(one US and one Canadian) where I can buy Latin American coffees for less than $5 a pound, wholesale. The most expensive coffee they carry is $6 a pound. If your talking about Kona Coffee. That is always more and I don't know of any coffee shop that would have Kona coffee as the house blend.

Forgetting that for the moment.
I may be a Saskatchewan farmer but I know that if I can buy coffee at $5 a pound, the roaster is making at least 100 % on that. So we are right back to $3 a pound. If you're talking about companies like Starbucks, Seattles best, Second cup. GrabaJava.
Do you really believe they aren't getting their coffee for less than that?

Lets take it one step further. If your a small cafe' selling coffee, how much do you think you would pay for the cheap coffee they sell. I can walk to my corner store and pick up a pound of Nabob, Maxwell House, Folgers for about $3.50 a pound. The cafe goes directly to the source and gets their coffee delivered to there door for half of that.
Why do you think they can afford to give you free refills? Every pot of coffee is costing about $1.50 to brew. They sell it for minimum $50 a pot.
$48 gross profit.

So ok, lets talk about some one who wants to have a small coffee shop. You don't need a big space. Just a good location. But with all the empty spaces around it shouldn't be hard to find a small space at a reasonable rent.
If your serious, you invest in a small commercial roaster and roast your own beans. You can buy green beans in bulk for $1 to $2 a pound, depending on the country. It doesn't take long to learn how to roast coffee. The best coffee I ever had was in a small coffee shop in a strip mall. The lady had a small roaster and roasted her coffee daily for what she needed.
So you sell coffee and dunkers. (cookies, biscotti and the like) make them or find someone who would make them for you.

Any time you have a product that has a minimum 1000% markup, you have an excellent base to make money.
Start small and grow as you go.
 

blackjava

New member
Nov 5, 2005
33
0
Canada
cafemakers said:
Good luck; be sure to let us know how that shop turns out!

I know, you think I'm nuts :D
But you have to back it up with information to prove me wrong. I'll bet
the young lady who wanted to start a coffee shop is a little more
optemistic.
And when I get mine up and running I'll give you all the details.

See ya
 

topher

Super Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2003
3,736
13
Boca Raton
invest in commercial roaster? I think it is funny that so many people think that roasting is so simple....Also when you buy your coffee one bag at a time you are not going to find great coffee for $1.00 a lb....and are you talking Canadian dollar??!!
 

blackjava

New member
Nov 5, 2005
33
0
Canada
What I find even funnier is that there are people who would like you to believe that roasting coffee is so difficult. All the machines that I see are all automated. And I've had some pretty bad coffee from roasters that are supposed to know what they are doing. Do you think Starbucks has a good roast? I'm not the only one who thinks they burn their beans.

Sure it takes some learning and practice. But don't tell me that if I experimented for a month that I couldn't produce a decent roast. And I don't need to produce a hundred variations of each roast. All I need is a light , medium and dark. And I can pick 2 or 3 coffees to start.

As far as price, I'm talking about 100 pounds or more at a time. I know prices are fluctuating but I just checked the November price on coffee.
It is running at $1.10 US a pound for Arabica. If I wanted to I could get Robustica for $0.50 a pound. That's what all your store bought coffee is.
Now I realize I can't buy at market price but I can find a broker who will sell to me close to that price.

But forget all that. Even if I simply bought roasted beans which I can get any where for less than $5 a pound at wholesale. That's 5 pounds at a time. If I bought 100 pounds I can get it for less than $4 a pound.
Using an 8 oz measure per cup and 32 cups per pot that is still $0.12 a cup. I don't know any where that sells a cup of coffee for less than $1.50.
So we're still over 1000% mark up. Using the previously mentioned $0.65 cent ( which would be high for my purposes) to get it to the public, you're still talking in the range of $1.00 a cup profit.
Those figures would be for a Starbucks style coffee shop. You don't think a small intimate shop could do a lot better?
 

topher

Super Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2003
3,736
13
Boca Raton
Duuuuude....whats with the anger?? I just commented on people thinking it is so easy to roast....sigh....I see you are not a roaster...there is a lot to learn...buying cupping roasting blending ......fires....I didn't say it was impossible but damn son it isn't easy! Its like painting...not everyone can paint a picture....you can learn the basics but to take it to the next level you have to have skills....mad skills yo! Back to the original question....can one make it owning a coffee shop...my original post I said,"you don't want to be rich...you just want to(barely) make a living...man you picked the right business to be in...just kidding(sort of) Good luck" did you not see where I said just kidding? I also believe if you have a dream follow it!!!!
 

blackjava

New member
Nov 5, 2005
33
0
Canada
Hey, I'm not the least bit angry :D Just having a discussion.

Your post is way up top, right under the lady who started this thread.
You implied that you can't make much money in a coffee shop and I disagree.
Of course there are a lot of influences that could make it tough. It would
depend on where you were and what you envisioned.
You wouldn't want to set up next door to Starbucks. However, if you can
find a good location away from a high rent area, I think you could have a nice little business.

I want to make a genral coffee shop where people can hangout, enjoy themselves, read the paper, have a coffee, catch up with old friendsm type of thing, i want to focus more on the people, and just make there stay an enjoyable and unforgtable one.

I think the young lady has the right idea. And I also believe that if she
has the ambition she could definetly make it work. And she could have
fun doing it.

Bob
 

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