Monday, August 25, 2014

Starting up

Now that we are ready start brewing coffee for people, I am finding it very difficult to get over the first hump.

Challenge 1: Fear and doubt leading to paralyzing over-analysis

We worked on our business plan to the point of realizing we don’t have enough data to put together a sound business plan. Decision made: do a test. We have a good plan for our test, but it keeps getting stalled because we are unsure about what we are doing. How many options do we offer? Where do we go? How do we manage grinder noise? And a thousand other questions.

Challenge 2: Costs

The location where we want to test our cart is very expensive. They charge about $3000/month plus a percentage of the revenue. There is no way we can pay that. We are working with the mall to make this work, but it is not easy. There is also insurance that is needed. How can I pay for $3 million insurance for a test market?

Challenge 3: Partners

We want to partner with a roaster for the coffee (it’s amazing) and because they are an established business. We are hoping they will be willing to work with us on this test market so we can utilize their insurance, if not, it is back to the drawing board. Similarly with the mall, if they don’t work with us, it will be back to looking for a good location.

We are going to do a Kickstarter to raise funds for the full concept, but we need to know how much money is necessary to get it off the ground. We need to do the test to put together solid financials, but we need to money to do the test. It is a vicious circle. I can completely understand why so many businesses struggle to get off the ground. The business world has made it really hard for those of us that don’t have a ton of money in our back pockets.

All I have is a love for coffee and resilience. I hope that is enough.