MFI Helps Khanya Craft Coffee Reach Discerning Palates

30 Oct 2018 | 05.00 pm

MFI Helps Khanya Craft Coffee Reach Discerning Palates

'Without Microfinance Ireland, we’d have been in a much more difficult cash flow situation'

30 Oct 2018 | 05.00 pm

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Khanya Craft Coffee is satisfying the sophisticated coffee consumer with premium award-winning coffees. A loan from Microfinance Ireland was crucial in the startup phase

When Terry Behan and Bernard McDonnell were introduced by a friend in 2006, they could never have foreseen that 12 years later they would be both fulfilling their dreams, following their passion for coffee and running a very successful and innovative business in Ireland.

They set up Khanya Craft Coffee three years ago on the back of the growing popularity of coffee and to satisfy the increasingly sophisticated Irish coffee consumer by providing top quality ‘on-trend’ coffee. Khanya Craft Coffee is a contemporary brand — on the pulse of changes in the industry with a ‘rustic retro feel’.

Terry, having worked in senior management positions for almost 30 years, brings exceptional business knowledge and management experience to the business, while Bernard, a coffee expert, has in-depth knowledge and technical expertise about both the product and the sector.

Great Taste Awards

The Irish consumer has become far more discerning about coffee in recent years with a significant shift towards premium options. Khanya Craft Coffee supplies their premium range to hotels, restaurants and gourmet coffee houses.

The company was recently awarded four ‘Great Taste Awards’ — often described as the ‘Oscars’ of the food and drink world, and one of the highest number of awards achieved by any company in Ireland this year, a testament to the quality of its offering.

“We provide a high quality proposition, in that as well as good quality coffee, we offer a full support package to our clients which includes equipment, barista training, and profit plans as well as providing ongoing support and advice to ensure customer satisfaction,” Terry says.

Quality Coffee Beans

“The Khanya team has decades of experience in the sector and we believe our process resembles a ‘fine art’,” Bernard explains. “We use only top quality Grade 1 Arabica beans that are selected from a single origin, from places like Colombia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Indonesia, Brazil and El Salvador.

“Our team of Master Roasters are very experienced in selecting top quality coffee beans, and are also innovators to produce a very high quality, product that also responds to ever-changing market trends.”

Terry adds: “Khanya, which means ‘the beginning of light’, also represents what we provide our customers — consistent quality and customer service, ensuring everybody wins.”

Vital Finance

While the business has grown very successfully, Terry admits that the initial stages of the business were not without challenges. “The initial investors in the business were ourselves, and two other business people, good friends who trusted us and believed in what we were doing.

“However, more finance was needed, and if we hadn’t been able to secure the funding from Microfinance Ireland, we’d have been in a much more difficult cashflow situation. The Microfinance Ireland loan was vital to setting up the business in the very early stages of its development.”

  • Microfinance Ireland is a not-for-profit lender that provides loans up to €25,000 to small businesses who may be having difficulty in securing access to finance. If you would like more information, go to microfinanceireland.ie

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