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Why are some coffee shops growing into successful chains, and some are hardly getting cash positive as single outlets?



One of my friends started a coffee shop as an individual business three years ago. Despite all his efforts, now this cafe is closed because it was cash negative and drove him a minus.

Recently, I read about Romanian guys, who started their coffee shop business three years ago as well, with 10K euros and 12 sq.meters, and now they have over 150 coffee shops, have sold 35% of their company to venture investor, and have opened their franchise. 

Quite impressive growth over the same three years. I am curious to research about what significant difference was between both coffee shop startups developments.

I think one of the key important differences was an experience: the Romanians had among their previous project - owning a bar and having several cafes. Based on such knowledge, they could learn how to manage such a business and understand its pluses and minuses. And they already could understand what is necessary to make such business scalable.

Another essential point was - vision: Romanians from the beginning have set a target to develop a chain retail business, to attract strategic investors, and later to sell their business to a strategic buyer. That is smart move generally because once you are starting to grow and especially scale your retail business to many outlets - you have to build an exit plan.  

And I believe Romanian founders new, from the beginning who will be their target potential strategic buyer. (Maybe Nestle? or Coca Cola, who acquired some years ago Costa Coffee for 3,8 billion euros!).

That's why - what three years ago, looked pretty much similar: my friends small coffee shop and Romanians small coffee shop - in 3 years became absolutely different from the result, size, and perspective point of view.

Many things to learn. Many points to research. What about you? Are you in the position of a friend of mine? Or are you in the place of Romanians?  Or would you like to become successful like Romanians in your business? 

Please share your story and experience. Let us learn together how to succeed.

P.S. And yes, Loyverse POS is ideally solution to fit for the cafe shop business models - from individual shops, Romanian alike cafe chains to Costa Coffee size coffee shop chains.

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I agree that experience and vision play a significant role in growing successful businesses. It is also true in the foodservice industry. 

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