Our Kickstarter campaign is about bringing the FIRST exclusively loose leaf tea bar to Charlotte, North Carolina. Birch Fine Tea was started by myself (Alena) and my sister Kristina just a little over 2 years ago. We are originally from Ukraine and have dreamed about opening a tea bar to showcase the beauty of the tea leaf, beyond the sweet tea which is so prevalent here in the South.
Our dream felt quite in the distance... "one day" was often at the tip of our tongues. However like in most cases, when life changing events occur - things change quickly. In July of 2015, I was diagnosed with a rare chemo resistant Ovarian Cancer and Heart Failure. I dropped down to 80 pounds, the cardiologists were skeptical that my heart would never recover and at one point hospice was recommended. At a time where I was criticized by some doctors for refusing hospice, I CHOSE to look forward towards the future and work towards our dream!
During my recovery, between doctor visits Kristina and I spent our "down time" researching everything we needed to know to start an online loose leaf tea company. We poured our soul into every step of the process, from package design to building the website and tea selection. We sampled hundreds of tea until we found the right quality and flavor to showcase to our community!
After launching our online store we were blessed to get involved in the vendor community in our lovely Queen City. In 2018, we participated in dozens of pop-up events from Girl Tribe pop-up, to Art & Soul of South End and OMB Holiday Market! With each event we've received an overwhelming positive response from the community and are THRILLED to take the next step in our business!
Since the beginning of this journey, we have self-funded each step of the the process and are thankful to be debt-free. Your support will get us within reach of opening a tea bar in Charlotte THIS SPRING!! To us, Kickstarter is an amazing way to get our community involved in the process and to offer something as a way to say thank you for sharing this experience with us!
These funds will be used for:
- Increasing inventory
- Main counter build-out
- Furnishing our tea bar
- POS/cash register
- Signage and shop decor
Birch Fine Tea -Bar will also offer services, such as:
- Free tasting any time
- Regular mini vendor pop-ups
- Tea education
- Classes and workshops
- Private events and meet-ups
We thank you and can't wait to serve you!!
Alena + Kristina
Risks and challenges
Of course, opening a tea bar comes with some risk. A brick-and-mortar operation carries significantly higher overhead. We have plans in place to help us ramp up revenues to the level we'll need to stay open. Our diversification plan will allow us to bring in a whole new demographic of customers. In addition, we are thankful that Camp North End has invested in supporting local small businesses and is adamant to see us all succeed! There are no other loose leaf tea shops in the vicinity, so we really will have the market to ourselves.
Working out of this new venue will also enable us to distribute our product to retail, as well as greatly increasing our wholesale customer base. We will continue to retail online and come out to see you at all our favorite events!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (10 days)