Here’s a story from CNN today about a woman in Boston, Lucy Valena, who just opened her own coffee company, Voltage Coffee, a mobile espresso catering gig, with $2,000 of her own money and a $4,000 loan from Sam Adams (no not Porltand’s mayor Sam Adams) the brewery.
Why the money from the Boston Beer Company (brewer of Sam Adams)? Well the company supports lending microloans to help small food and beverage businesses get on their feet, thinking that a growing market lifts all retailers. The program is called Brewing the American Dream. Nice! Samuel Adams founder Jim Koch says of Voltage, “[It] reminded me a lot of brewing and how we make our beer, and of course you know I believe that anything brewed is good.”
That’s pretty cool. I can tell you that it can be very, very tough to find any sort of financing for new business. Though to help the country out of the economic doldrums more small business loans are now available through the Small Business Administration (SBA), the truth is that most loans are for existing businesses not start-ups.
I’m also impressed by anyone who can start a viable business on such shoestring budget. Six grand to make yourself your own boss is pretty awesome. I can only hope that she budgeted for a subscription to Barista Magazine!