easyCoffee has recently served its millionth cup of coffee since it launched just two years ago. The UK’s only value coffee chain – part of the ‘easy’ family of brands that includes easyJet – is shrugging off the woes faced by many other High Street retailers and the slowdown challenges in the rest of the coffee sector*, and enjoying rapid growth.
Building on the success of its eight coffee stores and soon-to-be 250 vending machines nationally, the coffee chain is ramping up its expansion plans and expects to open 200 more stores in the next three years. It has already secured development partnerships with seven franchisees that have committed to delivering half of these.
By comparison, recent market analysis shows that there was a net increase of only 25 coffee shops opened by major coffee shop chains in the UK last year**. easyCoffee also plans to roll out a further 500-700 vending units this year.
In contrast to other market leading coffee shop chains, which have a stated premiumisiation strategy, easyCoffee’s approach is to target the less developed value segment of the coffee shop and coffee to-go market, by providing quality coffee at affordable price points.
Nathan Lowry, CEO of easy Coffee, commented: “Selling our millionth cup of coffee shows that even in a crowded market place, consumers are quickly realising that only easyCoffee offers them quality coffee at a value price in an enjoyable coffee shop environment.”
He added: “This achievement is a big endorsement of our business strategy to target the previously untapped value segment of the coffee shop sector and a boost for our ambitious expansion plans.”
Despite analysts arguing that the coffee sector is facing saturation point in four years’ time**, investors including Saudi investment group Al-Dhowayan have got behind easyCoffee’s business plans and provided it with substantial first-round funding. The coffee chain is now in talks with a variety of investors to complete second-stage capital raising of up to £3 million to expand its business.