About K Bean - From Hobby to Business

by Paul Sadler

It's Paul here. I'm a family man and with a passion for travel, hiking and all things coffee. After many years of obsession with coffee and coffee machines I decided to have a little fun with a hobby business. ...and K Bean was born. Here's a little run down of the K Bean Journey. 

Let's start off with the K. The “K” comes from the Ethiopian goat herder, Kaldi, who, as legend has it, discovered the eye opening nature of coffee when he observed the spirited behaviour of his bean-eating goats. Wow, my first "brand." How exciting! I quickly slapped together a very simple K Bean logo.  

I advertised on Facebook and letterbox dropped to offer manual brewing kits with in-home training for Beaumaris locals. My goal was to show people how to make great coffee at home and have a little fun along the way. People were soon asking for my home-roasted beans so I set up an old-school “drop box” honesty system. In the pictures below you can see me looking happy (and yes, slightly over-branded) and your can see my first employees heading off to work. We were having a ball. 

I built a website and started offering a larger range of equipment including manual brewing systems, cold drip towers, Italian coffee machines, grinders and accessories. The picture below shows my boy at work, labelling coffee bags. On the RHS is one of his school projects. Not a bad piece of work for a 7 year old.

 K Bean Coffee in the early days and a coffee machine designed by my boy

I was soon selling a decent number of Italian coffee machines, grinders and accessories to Melbourne locals and also, shipping coffee gear all over the country. It wasn’t all plain sailing. I met fierce resistance from a small number of established players and many battles were fought. The war to get established is another story for another page.

As the business grew I stepped back to look at my strengths. Anyone can ship boxes around the country so what is different about K Bean? Of course customer service is a strength, but every retailer claims to offer great service so what makes K Bean stand out from the crowd? The key was that the business was run by a genuine home barista hobbyist (ie, me) who really believes in the cause. The next step was to leverage this strength by focusing the business onto manual coffee machines, grinders and accessories for like minded home espresso enthusiasts.

Another strength was my own home barista journey. My own journey put me in a great position to fill a website with quality content including easy-to-follow guides, workflows and tips. It was soon time for a new website and a new logo. 

People often ask me how K Bean has taken off and I tell them that it's because coffee is still my hobby. This means that this isn't "work" for in the normal sense so I'm happy to just live it. K Bean is still "fun and games" for me but it's also now a serious Pty. Ltd. Company …and it’s my pride and joy. 

I’m enjoying myself and it's all thanks to you ...so thanks to past and present customers as well as a preemptive thanks to future customers. Many of you are interstate, but Melbourne coffee machine buyers have been able to visit me for training. It's the people I meet that give me the biggest boost.  

Thank you for trusting me and my Buying Guides to help you with choosing the very best Italian coffee machines, grinders and espresso accessories for your home.

Enjoy your toys :)
Paul 

    

K Bean Coffee Machines 18 B Banksia Avenue Beaumaris, VIC, 3193 Australia