Last month we celebrated our 1st Birthday (click here for video). The party was attended by friends, family and customers and was a great success. Even though we were all working that night, we managed to take time out to enjoy the festivities.
The party capped off a year that shall we say … had its ups and downs.
The Tough Beginning
We opened up at a time when the country was in economic turmoil. There was an increase in VAT, utility prices and unemployment. Out of the five original team members, only one had worked in a coffee shop. Within a week of opening, we were told that the Coffee Republic branch opposite us was the best performing in the whole of its chain (yet to be confirmed by a reliable source). None of us had operated a business before. We didn’t have any marketing strategy or product development ideas.
The things we did we have in abundance were passion, energy and drive. We knew where we wanted to be. We had a passion to create great coffee. We had the energy and drive to open the coffee shop every morning, on time, despite the coldest winter in years. We ignored any detractors who said that our coffee shop was more suited to London than Birmingham.
Just as we were settling into our rhythm, the riots sparked off around us. Thankfully we remained unscathed, but our fledgling business was clearly affected.
Then in September, we opened the coffee shop to a huge leak. The basement was completely flooded and we all know that water and solid oak do not make good bed fellows. What was our response? The team rallied round and the shop was open for business with only 45 minutes downtime.
For those of you who have been following us on Facebook or Twitter, you will know there have been far more ups than downs. Far too many to mention in this Newsletter, so we will leave you with our latest videos (click here for promo video and click here for birthday party).
A big “Thank You” to all the customers who walk in everyday to make Six Eight what it is today.
Joe (our Barista) entering the UK Barista Championships , 20th March 2012
Home Brewing Masterclass By “Brewed By Hand”, 22nd March 2012 (click here )
First of our monthly Film Nights in the Basement, 30th March 2012