Amanda and Keith Grant set up Beankind, a family run coffee roastery based in Lossiemouth last year. Here, they share with us the story behind their business.
Why choose to go into business for yourself and when did you start your current business? We’ve always worked for other people but after Amanda took a break in her career to raise our children, we both felt it was time for a change. The time was right to start a business of our own as it was something we thought about for a long time. We moved into our work premises in August 2016 although the roaster didn’t arrive until January 2017.
Why did you choose your current business? Coffee has always been a topic of conversation in our home and anytime we travelled to a new place we would always seek out the nearest speciality coffee seller. After trying our hand at home roasting we decided to hone our skills so we enrolled on a professional coffee roasting course. We were hooked and from there it felt like a natural progression for us to start our own coffee business.
Who has helped you get started and develop your business? Business Gateway in Moray and Lorna Williamson in particular have been a great help. We first approached Lorna a couple of years ago when we had the chance to buy an established roastery but we decided against this idea as we wanted to build our own business instead. We then sought Lorna’s advice again when we began to put plans together for Beankind. The vast knowledge and experience that the team have means you can go to them with any question and they will have or will find the solution for you. We have also joined Lossiemouth Business Association and the support we receive is great – it’s a very supportive group to be part of and it’s fantastic to speak and learn from other local business owners.
What achievement are you most proud of? Every day we pride ourselves on our great customer feedback. There’s nothing more satisfying than knowing people enjoy your product and come back for more. On a more personal level, we are proud of building our own website and working hard to get the roastery up and running.
What was your biggest mistake? We don’t really have a biggest mistake as we like to think of it all as a learning process. But we did put pressure on ourselves to work 24/7 in order to succeed. We have since learned that it’s important to allow ourselves some down time as it makes us more productive.
What is the biggest challenge facing your business? As we are still relatively new we need to continue to work at making contacts and building confidence with potential wholesale customers. Our roastery is an open house so people can come to us and see how we work and buy some coffee directly from us.
What would help your business? Getting our name out there. This year we will be working on promoting and marketing ourselves further. We cup our coffees weekly which helps us maintain high quality so we would like to get this message out and expand our customer base.
What do you still want to achieve for your business? To be a recognised brand, not just locally. We want to grow the business but we feel it’s important to keep to our ethics of small batch and hand crafted as we do.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to start a business in Moray? Talking to family and friends is a great starting point but often they tell you what you want to hear so without a doubt speak to those in the know. Business Gateway is a free service open to anyone with an idea and in our experience we found the support invaluable.
Find out how Business Gateway Moray can help your business by visiting their local page or calling 01343 508 838.
Outwith this area? Find your local Business Gateway office or call 0300 013 4753.
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If you need advice on any aspect of starting, running or developing your business, just contact your local Business Gateway office.
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