There was a time in Duluth, Minnesota when there was just a couple of specialty coffee shops in town, but now there’s one around every corner which forced Alyza Bohbot’s family to consider selling their business due to stiff competition. Fresh out of her master’s degree, she rebranded the family business into City Girl Coffee, which made sales increase by a whopping 300%.
She always thought the coffee shop was her parents’ thing
Her family’s failing business came at a time when she was living on the east coast, working hard to get a master’s in school counseling. Continuing the family business was something she never considered, however when the time came to join the bandwagon, she said, “I didn’t want to ever look back at my life and wonder what might have been.” Born to Israeli immigrant parents who started their own coffee shop back in the 1990s, it was all ship shape when they had just begun, however over the years, business seemed to have died down, sadly. As someone who thought that running a business something which her parents did, she was quite detached from it, but after reconsidering the offer, she knew that this would be a once in a lifetime opportunity.
She only does business with women-owned/run coffee farms and co-operatives
After getting a crash course in all things coffee and running a business, she rebranded it City Girl Coffee, a ‘hip, young, female-focused coffee brand with a mission’. Inspired by the fact that 70% of the coffee in the world is produced by women, she thought, “what if we had a coffee brand that tried to source as much coffee as possible from women coffee farmers, and then on top of that, work with these organizations to give back to these women.” Today, you can’t miss the picture of a millennial woman riding a scooter and the bright pink packaging that the coffee comes in which has made it a huge hit. Also, CGC only does business with women-owned or run coffee farms and co-operatives to promote women in the industry.
With strong belief to always staying true to oneself and looking into one’s purchasing habits, even a newcomer to the entrepreneurial realm can make it with a little bit of help.
Image credit: The Forward, Refinery29