The tantalising smell of rich Saigon coffee was a life-changer for Sheffield entrepreneur Jim Rose.
And having worked with the Sheffield City Region Launchpad programme, his vision of a Vietnamese coffee shop has become a reality and he employs 10 members of staff.
He and partner Melissa had been travelling in Saigon when they were woken by the rich aroma of Vietnamese coffee which is sweetened and filtered to produce an intense full flavour.
Jim realised the coffee was a business opportunity, trained as a barista and learned how to run a café. By July 2016 he wanted to find premises and got in touch with the Launchpad programme where a business advisor helped him to clarify his ideas and signposted him to free workshops on business practicalities and marketing.
Specialist lender Finance For Enterprise helped him to secure an initial Start-up Loan to purchase kitchen appliances, furniture and decorations to transform a former Chinese restaurant into his Vietnamese vision.
Then an Enterprise Loan allowed him to relaunch with the name Five Rivers and add a retail arm selling Vietnamese coffee beans, retro posters, and coffee-making equipment – and the café marked its first year in business by being crowned Start-up Business of the Year at the inaugural Sheffield City Region Launchpad awards.
“The support I’ve received from both Finance For Enterprise and the Launchpad programme helped me to refine my ideas. The advice I received from my Launchpad business advisor helped me to identify my short, medium and long-term goals and not to be afraid to ask for help. Without the support of Finance For Enterprise and Launchpad, I simply wouldn’t have been able to achieve my dream of launching a business.”
Terry Woodhouse, Investment Manager, Finance For Enterprise added:
“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.”
Natalie Fletcher, Business Advisor, Launchpad said:
“The success Jim has achieved in transforming an idea that was built on a concept close to his heart made him a very worthy winner of the title of Start-up Business of the Year at our first Launchpad Awards.”
- Finance For Enterprise is a registered lender under the Enterprise Finance Guarantee scheme. It is responsible for managing a business loan fund which has been supporting new start, early stage and growing businesses for more than 30 years. For more information call 0333 014 3455 or visit finance-for-enterprise.co.uk.
- Launchpad forms part of the Growth Hub. Financially supported by the European Union Regional Development Fund and delivered by local authorities in the Sheffield City Region and the Princes Trust, the programme provides free help and support to budding who are thinking of starting their own business, or have started trading within the last two years. For more information call 03330 00 00 39 or visit scrlaunchpad.co.uk