Wow! Time flies by! I can’t believe it has been six years since we opened up our first location in Cornelius. I could’ve never imagined that we would still here six years later. It hasn’t always been easy. What started as just a small coffee shop in a small town has now turned into the biggest and fastest-growing local coffee shop from Lake Norman to Charlotte! Last year, we opened up two stores, and I thought that was the hardest year of my life, between managing the construction of two new locations and operating the other stores.
However, this year, that challenge seems like nothing! While we were busy trying to expand, we were fortunate enough to be selected to host a US Coffee Championship Prelim for Roaster and Coffee In Good Spirits competition at our Huntersville location. For those of you who aren’t familiar with specialty coffee, this is a competition where roasters and baristas from around the country come together to determine who roasts the best coffee and who creates the best drinks. We had a blast doing this, and we can’t wait to participate in Qualifying this year!
Also, this year, our customers will be in for a real treat. Our manager Mary went to Colombia and outbidded roasters around the country to bring home the #2 coffee from Colombia. You can read about her experience in the previous blog. I’m very excited about this particular coffee, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it because this will be the best coffee we have ever had here at Waterbean Coffee!
As the year begins to wrap up, we are preparing to open up our sixth location in Charlotte, and our first INTERNATIONAL location will open in Vietnam in a couple months. We will also be managing our own coffee farm in Vietnam, so we can directly import coffee from the second largest coffee producer in the world directly to our roastery in Huntersville, NC.
The Vietnam location will be a very special location for me. I still can’t believe that I would one day return to my birth place to open up a business that I created here in the US. This is really coming full circle for me. There are many moments in my life that I consider to be very special, and these Vietnam locations will be one of those moments.
Of course, none of this would be possible without our amazing customers and staff! Nothing I did would matter if we didn’t have our loyal customers and our hard working staff!
This brings up the future of Waterbean Coffee. People often ask me how I choose which location and areas to expand into, and if I have any plans to expand in their specific area. I always explain that community is very important to us, and respecting other local businesses is one of our core values. When I decide where Waterbean Coffee will go in the future, I make sure that there is not a local coffee shop directly at that location.
I want other businesses to have the same chance to prosper because the world is too big to hurt others. By hurting others you are actually hurting yourself. I think by staying true to these principles, we have been able to accomplish everything we have so far!
I have a lot of plans for Waterbean Coffee in 2020, and my goal is to continue to expand so we can spread the joy and happiness that our coffee brings.
I would like to close out this post by thanking our customers and staff for the past six years. I want everyone to know that Waterbean Coffee is more than a coffee shop. We’re a big family, and I will do whatever it takes to make sure we continue to deliver the best products to everyone!