[Homeroast] OT: Help us expand Coffee as Culinary in ClarkCounty Washington
mckona at comcast.net
Sat Oct 4 00:26:20 CDT 2014
The goal of course is to be awarded a Grant. Easiest way to really answer
that is our answers to the 5 essay question application (limit 1000
1) Tell us about your business and what makes it unique. Please provide a
general description of your product, customers, competitive landscape, and
>From carefully sourcing the green coffee to roasting and tasting each small
batch to bring out its natural best, Compass Coffee Roasting is all about
passion. We strive to present coffee as a culinary art, and to showcase our
passion without pretense. Coffee is much more than just a caffeine delivery
system, and Compass is much more than it's walls and roof. It is a living
member of the community.
Our customers are, hands down, the best. Our customers are our friends,
treated as family. Young to old, novice to connoisseur, we meet people where
they're at. We choose to focus on quality, making our syrups, sauces, tea
blends and pastries in house.
Despite being one of the newer companies and being located in one of the
most competitive markets in the country- the Pacific Northwest, in the 2014
readers' poll, we were voted the Best Coffee by our county's newspaper, The
Columbian. We've grown over 50% annually since 2012 and we need to expand.
2) What inspired you to become an entrepreneur? Describe both your greatest
achievements and biggest challenges.
I was a hardworking, loyal employee in the top 1% income bracket. When I was
laid off and offered an outsourced job I realized it was time to put my
passion for coffee to work! I've never looked back.
We opened in 2007, but after the market crashed in 2009 business cut in
half. I thought 2 years of business was enough foundation. Wrong. Rent went
late. Utilities late. Ultimately, I even lost my house. It was crushing, one
of the hardest things I've dealt with, but we never missed a payroll, paid
our employees on time every cycle. 5 years ago, right as things were
crashing, Bryan Wray joined my team.
When it honestly looked like we were done, we dug in. Hard. Bryan and I
slaved 100+ hour weeks for almost two years, never taking a paycheck for
ourselves, and it paid off. We are so proud of what we have overcome. Bryan
is now my business partner. We've gone from no hope to no doubt. The light
at the end of the tunnel is no longer a freight train, our future is bright!
3) How is your business involved with the community you serve? Examples
include: giving back to the community, sourcing locally, and/or contributing
to economic development via hiring.
Community is paramount to us. Our customers and employees are family.
I've always considered myself the patriarch. Which was one reason my wife
and I were willing to divert income from her job to keep employees paid and
the doors open during near impossible times. Yes, we lost our house, but the
business survived and is strong and growing. Currently we have 7 employees.
The grant would bring that number to about 20.
10% of our 2013 Holiday Blend sales donated to local charity. January we
were pleased to give the Children's Center a check for $446. We plan to
support them again this year. Also this year, we were fortunate enough to be
able to sponsor a free local music fest that had thousands of attendees. You
can find our employees volunteering in local politics, Farmer's markets,
tree planting events, brew fests, fashion shows, gallery openings and
culinary all over the city. Whatever the event, we try to support and get
involved whenever possible through volunteering.
4) What would a $150,000 grant mean to your business and how will you
utilize the funds? Please be as specific as possible.
First let me say that while we don't need the grant to survive, the grant
would be a god send and give us a strong breath of fresh air to grow. We've
proven we know how to survive, now we want to prove we know how to expand.
We are currently in the process of opening a much needed, larger, downtown
Vancouver location. The grant funds would be used for further equipment
purchases. Ultimately we would like to build an East and/or North County
location. Our customers have been asking for locations in these areas for
years. Which location would happen first depends on finding the right
location(s). Each new location would mean 4 to 5 more employees.
The funds would be used directly for new coffeehouse location plans, permits
& build outs, equipment purchases & new employee training. On average we
spend approximately $1000 per new employee before they are ready to work our
5) What are your short-term (1-2 years) and long-term growth plans for the
business? How will this grant contribute to your plan?
- Finish opening 2nd Downtown location.
- Open East County location.
- Open North County location.
- New equipment for our baking operation at the Roastery to meet continued
increasing demands. We are currently at capacity and often sell out of
pastries way too early in the day. We also cannot currently take large
orders for baked goods.
- Remodel our roasting location inside and out to become more inviting as a
coffee house. Currently it is a roastery first, and the coffeehouse is
somewhat of an add-on.
New locations and renovations take a lot of money. The average Starbucks
costs about $250,000 to open! We are very talented at sourcing quality, used
equipment, when possible and we can perform repairs when needed. This
usually means less than that much for us. The grant will go a long way
towards helping us reach our goal of serving all of Metro Clark County!
Slave to the Bean miKe mcKoffee
URL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer, some recipes etc:
Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must
first not know. And in knowing know I know not. Each Personal enlightenment
found exploring the many divergent foot steps of Those who have gone before.
Sweet Maria's List - Searchable Archives http://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/
From: Homeroast [mailto:homeroast-bounces at lists.sweetmariascoffee.com] On
Behalf Of Robert Yoder
Sent: Friday, October 03, 2014 9:02 PM
To: homeroast at lists.sweetmariascoffee.com
Subject: Re: [Homeroast] OT: Help us expand Coffee as Culinary in
Good luck, MiKe,
Let us know what the goal is and how it goes.
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