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Start-Up Company Who Gives A Crap Turns to Coffee


Start-up company “Who Gives a Crap” has expanded outside of toilet paper to launch a limited-edition coffee product.  If anything will get you using more toilet paper in the morning, it’s a steaming cup of Joe.

The limited-edition fair-trade Blend No. 2 coffee claims to come with notes of ‘juicy ripe apple’ and dark chocolate. It comes available as a whole bean or ground and comes in a compostable packet.

This eco-friendly startup’s MO is clear: to get more people using Who Gives A Crap’s flagship toilet paper products. Each coffee purchase even comes with a roll.

Founded in 2012, it has donated more than $10 million to good causes since 2020. Who Gives A Crap donates half of its profits to water and sanitation charities.

In September, Who Gives A Crap raised $41.5 million in its first venture capital funding round.

Founder and chief Simon Griffiths said in a statement “We’ve heard from reliable sources that coffee makes some people need to go to the bathroom.  As a toilet paper business, we found that pretty interesting. After all, the more toilet paper people use, the more we can donate to the billions of people living without safe access to a toilet.

Coffee sure seems like a good product to compliment the business.

The Coffee Bean Launches “Ditch the Bitter Choose the Better” Digital Ad Campaign


The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf launches a new digital ad campaign “Ditch the Bitter Choose the Better” after a consumer insight praised the brand’s coffee as better tasting.

Coffee consumers prefer the brand’s coffee because it tastes better compared with the competitor’s bitter coffee.  This insight has led to the digital campaign “Ditch the Bitter Choose the Better”.  The digital ads show the natural reaction to drinking a bitter latte that everyone has experienced. This campaign looks to underscore the problem and offer a better, not bitter option.

Jay Isais, Vice President, Coffee at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf articulated “We are extremely passionate about our espresso and want to celebrate one of our longest-standing beverages and traditions – the latte.  Our new ad campaign aims to show how The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf uses the finest Arabica coffees for our Espresso Roast Blend to craft a perfectly balanced silky, smooth latte with that distinct sweeter, lighter and friendlier coffee taste that our guests crave and enjoy.”

The Coffee bean & Tea Leaf prides itself with roasting the finest 100% Arabica coffee beans from five premier growing regions.  Each bean type in the brand’s signature Espresso Roast Blend is roasted individually to its peak flavor, then blended together to create the smooth, balanced flavor profile that produces a better flavor latte. Their philosophy and meticulous method of coffee bean roasting are to prevent the over-roasted and charred, burnt taste that is notorious with other coffee competitors.

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is an American coffee shop chain founded in 1963 in Los Angeles. It was recently acquired by Jollibee Foods Corporation in 2019 and operates stores in the United States and 31 other countries.



Luckin Coffee Files For Bankruptcy



In less than a year after the company admitted to fabricating millions of dollars in sales, Luckin Coffee has now filed for bankruptcy in the US.

According to the statement released by company officials who have filed Chapter 15 bankruptcy, the move will help to financially restructure and strengthen its balance sheet.  This type of filing shelters the US assets of foreign companies undergoing restructuring proceedings in their home country.  Officials also stated that bankruptcy won’t materially impact Luckin’s day-to-day operations and its roughly 3,600 cafes will remain open.

Last April 2020 news broke out about its Chief Operating Officer Jian Lu and his direct reports had engaged in misconduct that include fabricating sales transactions beginning in 2019 amounting to about $310 million.

Following the misconduct, COO Lu and CEO Jenny Zhiya Qian were both fired in May 2020. Luckin stock was also delisted on the Nasdaq exchange and the Securities and Exchange Commission slapped the company with a $180 million penalty to settle fraud charges.

Luckin went public in 2019.  It is now looking bleak for this company who was once hailed as the homegrown rival to Starbucks in China.

Baker’s Village, the Newest Innovation from Village Grocer Successful Launch

The Food Purveyor Sdn Bhd in Malaysia successfully launched its newest innovation, Baker’s Village from the Village Grocer Supermarket at the Atria Mall in Kuala Lumpur today.
Baker’s Village aims to provide shoppers a warm and friendly meeting place, to enjoy whilst they are shopping at Village Grocer.  It’s a comfortable place to enjoy freshly brewed coffee and the delights from the bakery.  Baker’s Village provides a chance to relax and have some respite from the hustle and bustle outside.

The rustic elements of the rattan and wood furnishings are suggestive of a traditional Malaysian Kampong, whilst the familiar tones of green and brown present a comforting connection to the environmental values, sustainability, and ethical practices of Baker’s Village.

Striving to impress with environmentally friendly packaging, preservative-free ingredients, and a warm family feeling; Baker’s Village prides itself on the passion to go the extra mile, providing personalized service, and delighting our customers with a holistic and pleasurable experience, that they will surely want to share.

The fresh idea and trend of merging a fresh bake and coffee concept together is the newest innovation from Village Grocer Supermarket in collaboration with Next Fresh Idea Consultancy.  This fresh new idea will be rolled out across a number of stores in the upcoming year.  Congratulations Baker’s Village!
Luckin Coffee Vending Machines

Luckin Coffee launches Vending Machines

Founder and CEO Qian Zhiya states that this new strategy will allow them to get closer to consumers.  They will not be restricted by the license approvals.  In what could be yet another first in China Luckin’s vending machines will serve freshly brewed drinks as well as food.

Luckin Coffee Vending Machines

Luckin Coffee launches new vending machines

Just recently, Luckin Coffee also launched a share placement and a convertible bond with a combined worth of US$821 million early January 2020.   That is according to a Reuters report which also mentioned that the proceeds will be used to open more stores and invest in sales and marketing of the brand.

Luckin coffee Stock Listing

Luckin coffee Share Price

Luckin Coffee Share Price

Luckin has recently surpassed Starbucks China, in terms of outlets count within the country.  Recently we reported on the incredible growth of Luckin Coffee and their determination to take on their key rival Starbucks.  Luckin are now operating more than 4,500 stores and growth is continuing.

Luckin Coffee’s business model focuses primarily on a coffee delivery and pickup style of business.  The venture into vending machines is seen to be a broadening of this model.  They have achieved great brand recognition and attachment in the under 30’s demographic.

It’s not luck that Luckin Coffee is beating Starbucks at their own game.

The heads at Starbucks must be worried…

Soul Origin

The Soul is in the Food and Service

The Soul is in the Food and ServiceLocated inside the basement food court of Queens Plaza, in the heart of Brisbane CBD, Soul Origin counter catches the attention of a busy lunch crowd with a broad menu that includes a variety of fresh, healthy and wonderfully colourful salads beside a variety of well-stacked sandwiches and wraps. The watchful staff greeted each customer with a welcoming smile and greeting.

In addition to the sumptuous salads, sandwiches and wraps, the menu also offers specialty coffee that is rich, smooth and sweet.

We were attracted by the activity, the colour, the friendly staff and the great prices.

We ordered the Bocconcini salad, Chicken Chorizo and the Grilled Chicken Baguette. The salad was fresh, crunchy and bursting with flavor topped off with a dressing to compliment. The Grilled Chicken baguette was crusty on the outside yet soft and fluffy on the inside and had a generous amount of filling. The flavour balances between the chicken and the chilli mayo brought the sandwich to life.

Fresh and Fabulous

Great food + Great service + Great value = Soul Origin

Overall Food Quality – Impressive!

Customer Service – Fast, Friendly, Courteous!

Outlay – Great Value, Well Priced!




Luckin Launches Tea

Luckin Tea LaunchesRocketing since blast-off in October 2017, Luckin Coffee is now set to launch a new independent business in the Chinese market.

The new offering is to be called “Luckin Tea“.

Chinese coffee chain start-up Luckin Coffee has announced that to speed up its market expansion, it will launch its Tea Business as an independent brand.

Last April, the Luckin Tea series was initially launched in Luckin Coffee shops and has experienced strong growth and exceeded company’s expectations.

Jian Liu, Luckin Coffee Chief Operating Officer said in a statement that the tea drink outlets aims to complement the existing coffee shops and will help roll out its footprint nationwide.

Luckin Tea will focus on Tier 2 through Tier 4 cities and will initially open in shopping malls.  However, Luckin Coffee stores will focus on Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities and will continue expanding in office locations.

Luckin Tea Launches Luckin app for orderingLuckin Coffee so far currently operates 2,963 stores spread across 40 cities in China. It has plans to open more than 4,500 stores by the end of 2019, making it the country’s largest coffee chain.  When it launched, Luckin Coffee stated that it aimed to displace Starbucks as the preferred brand of Coffee in China and it focussed on a Digital Ordering and Payment App to help it get mass streamlining of transactions to enable massive growth.

Fast Fact: Chinese consumption of coffee products grew at a compounded rate of 15% for the past decade and was estimated to be worth RMB 100 billion (USD 14.2 billion) in 2018.

Straws are Out, Lids are In!

As more establishments around the globe are phasing out single use plastic straws, Starbucks has launched a straw-less new lid which looks a lot like a child’s sippy cup that allows customers to drink cold beverages without a straw.

The new replacement lid is made of polypropylene, a substance that can make the lid reusable. It is sustainable and hence, a definite evolution from single-use plastic straws.  These straw-less lids will now be the new norm for tea, espresso beverages and iced coffee.  Bio-degradable straws will still be available for Frappuccino beverages, but not for long.

The coffee chain announced that it plans to phase out its iconic green straws globally by 2020. In addition to creating new straws made from alternative materials, Starbucks plans to promote cups with new lids that does not require a straw.

The new sippy cup lids are already in use in certain stores in the US and Canada


FACT: These recyclable lids will soon replace more than a billion plastic straws each year off the market




Costa Coffee in a Can

Cool Costa Canned Coffee

A new line of chilled, canned Costa Coffee will launch in Great Britain later this month.  This will be the first major product introduction since Coca-Cola acquired Costa Coffee from Whitbread Co for £3.9bn, which we reported earlier this year.   for Costa Coffee last year

Cool Costa Coffee - Americano in a Can

We correctly predicted that the acquisition by Coke would lead to Costa in a can, and we are glad to learn that Costa Coffee Ready-to-Drink (RTD) will be available in three popular Costa Coffee flavours – Classic Latte, Caramel Latte and Black Americano – made with the same Rainforest Alliance Certified Mocha Italia Signature Blend coffee beans used in all Costa Coffees and containing a double shot of espresso.Cool Costa Latte In A Can

The new brand delivers an authentic coffee taste experience with 30% less sugar than most RTD coffees in Great Britain.

Jennifer Mann, president of global ventures at Coca-Cola revealed: “Our teams at Coca-Cola and Costa Coffee have been working around the clock to make our shared vision of Costa Coffee ready-to-drink coffee a reality.

The launch is the newest example of Coca-Cola’s progress towards becoming a total beverage company.  Coke appears to be driven by a strategy to offer more drinks more people want, in more categories, package options and calorie counts.  Each 100% recyclable 250ml Costa Coffee can contains between 15-108 calories, compared to Starbucks’s Coffee 200ml Double Shot Espresso which contains 142 calories and 17g of sugar per can.

Cool Costa Caramel Latte In A CanCoffee is a large and growing category, but Coca-Cola has not had a strong, global coffee platform or brand recognition, until now.

This demonstrates the power of our partnership. It combines the marketing expertise, global scale and distribution credentials of the Coca-Cola system with Costa Coffee’s expertise and capabilities in coffee”, added Jennifer Mann.

Coca-Cola and Costa Coffee collaborated to develop and commercialise the new RTD coffee range which will launch in Poland and China within six months.  However, there are currently no apparent plans to introduce Costa RTD in the United States. 

Dominic Paul, CEO of Costa Coffee, added, “Through this collaboration, we’ve been able to work together to offer consumers the great taste of Costa Coffee in a can for the first time. We are committed to working together to give consumers more opportunities to enjoy the Costa Coffee they know and love, whenever they want, wherever they are. We’re really proud to have bought this product to market at such speed while still ensuring the range has proper coffee at its heart.

The launch will be supported by an integrated marketing campaign including outdoor and digital advertising, PR and consumer product sampling.  The campaign will include ‘a nod’ to Costa Coffee’s coffee shop heritage.Costa Coffee Shop Heritage

FACT:  Costa’s 2,600+ coffee shops in the UK has been voted the favourite coffee shop brand 9 years in a row!


Tim Hortons comes to Thailand

Canadian Coffee Comes To Thailand

Canadian Coffee Comes to Thailand

Iconic coffee brand Tim Hortons is coming to Thailand…

The Canadian brand Tim Hortons has appointed local operator WeEat Co as its master franchisor for the Canadian coffee brand in the territory of Thailand.   

“We are proud to partner with Tim Hortons to launch and develop this great brand in Thailand. We look forward to opening the doors of our first Tim Hortons restaurant and sharing Canada’s favourite coffee with our guests,” said Nick Wattanavekin, CEO of WeEat Company which is part of the Wattanavekin family group.

Tim Hortons Coffee

Alexandre Macedo, the President of the coffee giant recently announced, “We are very excited to grow the Tim’s brand in Thailand as part of our broader global growth strategy. Thailand has a thriving coffee market, and our partner has a deep understanding of the Thai market, which we believe will position us well for success in the country”.

As a part of global expansion, Tim Horton’s (which is a key part of the enormous Restaurant Brands International Inc), has also recently been launched into Spain, Mexico, Great Britain and the Philippines.  

The head of Hortons indicated that there are plans to open more than 1500 locations over the next 10 years in China, in cooperation with Cartesian Capital Group.  That’s a lot of Double-Doubles.

Fun Fact: Tim Horton was a Canadian professional ice hockey player who played 24 seasons in the National Hockey League.

Coke Coffee in a Can

Coke Coffee In A Can

Subsequent to our earlier story about the acquisition of the famous Costa Coffee brand earlier in the year, Coca-Cola is reported by Inside FMCG, to be taking steps to dive the Coke brand directly into the coffee market.  According to this report, soft drink giant Coca-Cola is to release “Coke Coffee” into as many as 25 markets by the end of this year.

Coke Costa3Image result for coke coffee \

Coke Coffee will apparently contain less caffeine compared to your regular cuppa but will come in a can packed with more caffeine and less sugar than competitors in this space.  Coke Coffee could be set to challenge the traditional energy drink mid-afternoon energy pickup dominated by Red Bull and others.

CNBC reported that Coke Coffee is already available in Vietnam, Brazil and Colombia, but was not sure which new markets would be opening later this year.

PREDICTION: Coke will release Costa Coffee in a can in 2019!

Luckin Coffee

Luckin Takes on Starbucks China

According to CBN Data, Coffee sales will top US$43.7 billion in 2020, a 330% jump from 2015 and this seven month old start up is giving Starbucks China a run for their money.

“There can’t be only one brand for China’s coffee market,” said Qian Zhiya Luckin Founder.  Speaking to the media about their market entry in China where Starbucks has dominated (50% market share), she stated firmly, “We are willing to learn from Starbucks’ advantages, from where we can innovate.”

Luckin coffee vs Starbucks

So far, Luckin has opened 809 stores this year that is spread across major cities in China. The British coffee brand Costa has 449 outlets since entering China in 2003 and Starbucks has the lead with 3,124 since entering China in 1999; while Luckin targets to open 2,000 by the end of this year.

Unlike their rivals boasting of Stand Alone stores, Luckin has taken a non-traditional approach of opening their outlets in unusual locations including, hidden inside office buildings or just off busy streets. As of June 44% of Luckin’s locations were dedicated for takeaways and the comany has forged a partnership with courier service provider SF Express offering a 30-minute delivery.

According to the company, in the first seven months alone, total cups sold amounted to 18 million and user retention is 80% in April for stores 3 months or older.  This is primarily achieved by customers ordering via the Luckin Coffee App and accessing deep discounts and promotions such as “buy 2, get 1 free” and “buy 5, get 5 free”.

Luckin recently secured a US$2 billion series A investment.

Watch this space.