Q&A: Early morning cuppas kick start coffee start-up’s expansion

This week we chat to Jaryd Terkelsen, co-founder – alongside friend and fellow fitness entrepreneur Ash Bisset – of beforeyouspeak, a new coffee company that specialises in high-performance, superfood-infused instant coffee sachets, ideal for those who want to boost their performance in the gym or those who just want to get more out of their morning cuppa. The pair have sold over two million coffees in 18 months and are about to launch in the USA.

ISB: What made you decide to set up a business in such a highly-competitive market as the coffee market?

JT: While the coffee market is a highly competitive space, there is always room for innovation in any industry! Coffee being such a widely consumed beverage, we saw it as the perfect vehicle to reach such a large market and target different cultures and sub cultures by blending our coffee with different ingredients to help improve health, well-being and performance.

ISB: What was the biggest challenge you faced in getting the business off the ground, and how did you overcome it?

JT & AB: The biggest challenge was cashflow. Being a start-up cash is always tight when bootstrapping. Every dollar counts! We had to be smart with how we reached the market and positioned ourselves to introduce such a new concept to a new audience. We were able to leverage our personal relationships and the power of social media to create brand awareness and exposure.

ISB: How did your previous experience with start-ups help you in setting up beforeyouspeak?

JT: Both of us have past experience in start-ups. I learnt a lot of mistakes of what not to do in past businesses. My connections experience in health and fitness and building brands on social media, and Ash’s experience in sports nutrition and retail in Australia gave us the knowledge and avenues to do what we have done a lot faster than we would have otherwise. Making good decisions comes from experience.

ISB: As fitness enthusiasts, how do you incorporate your fitness philosophies into your coffee products?

JT: The whole idea stemmed from us trying to get more out of each day. Running businesses and trying to keep in shape physically demands a high level of energy and focus top operate at a top level so we found ourselves looking for smarter solutions. We would drink a lot of instant coffee to keep us going because of the convenience of it and began mixing different ingredients into out coffee to make energy/focus last longer and we thought, there has to be something better than this out there. What we found was a big gap in the market for people who are all looking for the same thing, so we created a product to do exactly that.

More energy, better focus, no crash. Allowing you to have greater levels of output and be more productive when you are pushing hard!

ISB: What makes your product stand out from other health coffees in the market?

JT: We are quite unique in a number of ways. The functional ingredients we use and the benefits they give. Having a range of different coffee blends that all focus on different benefits and markets. The convenience of our sachets that can be used literally anywhere anytime as long as you have some water to mix with. And, bringing out a premium instant coffee that holds the rich smooth coffee taste with the other ingredients while still managing to keep it dairy free and sugar free has given us a huge edge, too.

ISB: And, finally, what is the no.1 piece of advice you’d share with others who have a business idea in mind?

JT: Do your market research. Clearly understand what problem you are solving in the market and know exactly who your target audience is and how you are going to communicate with them. Also, do what you can to surround yourself with good mentors and people that have done it all before. There is no substitute for experience when it comes to business. Once you get your idea to market, move fast and adapt quickly. Listen to the market. You will never get it 100 per cent right the first time. The best business people are the best problem solvers!

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