08 Apr 2016
6 Questions with Ben Lee, Owner & Founder of A Stimulant by Sarnies
- Hi Ben, tell us about the concept behind A Stimulant by Sarnies.
A Stimulant by Sarnies was created out of a need for great quality coffee beans. I started Sarnies Café, an Aussie style joint in downtown Singapore 4 years ago and noticed early on that the quality of roasted coffee was not consistent. I decided that I wanted to bring the roasting of the beans in-house so that we would have control over quality.
A few years on, my dream became a reality. We started roasting beans in-house to provide for Sarnies Cafe, then immediately realised that our customers were keen on using our beans in their homes, offices and businesses. So that is where this all started, we wanted to bring the whole bean to cup process under the one roof so that everyone could enjoy an awesome cup of coffee. Simple!
- What kind of culture exists in your organisation?
We like to keep things very chilled at A Stimulant by Sarnies. We encourage our team members to get involved with brainstorming new ideas and working on products and concepts that inspire them. This means that we have a very dedicated and happy team working with us to create awesome products that they care about and can stand behind.
- How important have good employees been to your success?
Our people are the key to this business. We wouldn't exist without a great team who are passionate about what we do. We put a real emphasis on making sure our work environment is nice and exciting for people to work in, because keeping great people happy and rewarding them for a job well done is paramount to a successful business and life.
- What are your views on the growing coffee culture in Singapore?
It's very exciting, Singapore has a real uncompromising sense for what a great cup of coffee is and what a good quality roast is. That inspires us to produce the best quality product possible and deliver it in a way that makes it accessible to anyone who wants it. Coffee really is the lifeblood of every great city and we are really proud to be playing a part in that.
- How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
We do a variety of various things with regard to marketing. One thing we are focusing on at the moment is visibility and awareness building online with the launch of our new website in June 2016 (www.sarniescoffee.com - mainly retail based). This is a whole new ball game altogether with most of our prior work being offline. The one thing we have learnt is that the digital world is ever changing, which means that we have to have the ability to evolve.
In addition to this we have the wholesale arm of our business, where we utilised an amazing team of coffee experts who go out into the world and create meaningful relationships with people and businesses that are in need information, training and/ or a quality roast.
- What are some of the things we can look forward to with the launch of your grab-and-go cold brew coffee option plus brand new online retail store?
So many exciting things to come this year! Our coffee website is very much in the works at the moment - we are thrilled to be able to make our coffee available in a super convenient way to those who want it.
Additionally in mid April 2016, our cold brew which we've been perfecting for the last few months will launch in Sarnies Café. This will initially only be available at the café, but we have big plans to bring the brew online as well as making its available in our other locations.
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