Jim spent time researching various options knowing his business was unlikely to be attractive to mainstream finance providers who often needed a track record. He decided to approach Finance For Enterprise, who helped him secure an initial Start-up Loan. Within two weeks Jim was able to purchase the vital kitchen appliances, furniture and decorations to transform a former Chinese restaurant into his Vietnamese dream.
Shortly after, Jim was unsatisfied with some aspects of the business and spoke with Finance For Enterprise again and was able to secure an Enterprise Loan, enabling him to refine the café, re-brand to Five Rivers Coffee Co. and launch a retail branch to the business, selling retro posters, coffee making equipment and the all-important Vietnamese coffee beans needed to help customers recreate the unique coffee flavours sold in the shop, at home.
This time, Jim was supported by Finance For Enterprise using their new online platform powered by Ask Inclusive Finance (AskIf), which enabled the application to proceed at a far greater pace. The AskIf platform enabled easy, convenient and secure information sharing at odd hours of the day when Jim, like many business owners, had available ‘quiet time’. All this without compromising the human relationship side of the experience.
Jim now employs 10 local people and “the orange coffee shop” has become an award-winning local landmark in Broomhill.
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A Sheffield-based entrepreneur who has brought a vision of Vietnam to the city is going from strength to strength after securing finance designed to support new and existing small businesses unlikely to obtain finance from mainstream banks and financial institutions.
Andrew Austwick, Executive Director, Finance For Enterprise said:
“Jim represents the kind of small business owner who is looking for an active relationship with responsible finance providers like Finance For Enterprise, whilst also expecting and receiving the advantages of a complementary FinTech service enabled through our partnership with Ask Inclusive Finance. Business owners like Jim need no longer decide between electronic and human contact, they can have the best of both.”
Terry Woodhouse, Investment Manager, Finance For Enterprise said:
“The success Jim has achieved in such a short space of time is incredible for a new entrepreneur and he has already made an impact within Sheffield by providing a unique experience and service coupled with a desire to support a global cause, whilst also creating more than 10 new jobs in the city.
“Like many new entrepreneurs, arguably one of the most difficult decisions to face is funding growth aspirations. We helped Jim to access the right finance options at the right time in his business journey; firstly to support the launch of his business and then the further development of his business concept with an extra loan."
“It was such a privilege to be able to travel across South East Asia with my girlfriend but it was Vietnam which had the biggest impact on us. The coffee experience provided me with the idea for my business and the support I’ve received from both Finance For Enterprise and the Launchpad programme helped me to refine my ideas. I think it’s easy to fall into the trap of trying to do everything all at once, but the advice I’ve received from my Launchpad business advisor helped me to identify my short, medium and long term goals and to not be afraid to ask for help when it’s needed. I felt I had hit onto a winning formula and Finance For Enterprise helped to provide the financial backing to allow me to invest in building and growing the business.
“Without the support of Finance For Enterprise and Launchpad, I simply wouldn’t have been able to achieve my dream of launching a business. Since we started trading, we’ve attracted a loyal clientele and we are using some of the proceeds of the business to support a charity called the Kianh Foundation, which helps families affected by the genetic mutations caused by Agent Orange contamination used during the Vietnam War, which continues to impact upon the health of the local population over 30 years later.”
.Jim Rose, Five Rivers Coffee Co.
Like many graduates, Jim Rose decided to spend some time travelling after successfully completing his degree in Business Finance and Economics, but little did he know that as he began his South East Asian adventure, it would prove to be the spark which would see him embark upon building a unique career for himself.
During their first day in Saigon, Jim and his partner Melissa were awakened by the smell of rich Vietnamese coffee and decided to try the unusual tasting drink for themselves. In Vietnam, coffee is sweetened with condensed milk instead of milk and sugar and filtered through a phin filter. The result is an intense, full flavour which turned coffee hater Melissa into a coffee lover, and Jim began to realise there was a potential business opportunity hidden within the coffee beans.
Determined to act on his idea, Jim spent time learning how to become a barista and understand the workings of an independent business in a local café, whilst spending his spare time writing his business plan. After excellent support from his business advisor from the Sheffield City Region Launchpad programme he faced one final obstacle: cash