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COLUMBUS COFFEE
THE ART OF GREAT COFFEE

by Columbus Coffee,
last updated 04/04/2017

Great cafés need a great roast and great baristas. Columbus Coffee has both

click images to enlarge

Columbus Coffee still has new franchises available in many parts of the country

Columbus Coffee still has new franchises available in many parts of the country

Columbus Coffee Roast Master David Burton

Columbus Coffee Roast Master David Burton

Columbus Coffee's Barista of the Year, Sam Laurie

Columbus Coffee's Barista of the Year, Sam Laurie

Columbus Coffee has always been dedicated to serving real coffee, ever since its first café and roastery opened on Auckland’s High Street in 1995. Twenty years on, there are almost 70 Columbus cafés around the country, all with the same focus on superbly-roasted coffee and equally superb food. 

David Burton is one of the founders of Columbus Coffee. He was one of the original driving forces behind New Zealand’s espresso scene and, to this day, every roast takes place under the watchful eye of David and his team. ‘We started roasting our own beans when we opened the first outlet and have developed our taste profiles to suit the Kiwi palate,’ he explains. ‘Today we do small batch roasts, just 25kg at a time. That’s quite something given the volume of coffee we sell across the group, but true craft roasting in this way helps maintain the quality and consistency of our blends. 

‘There is a deep-seated subtlety to the whole process which produces a real strength of flavour. Columbus customers certainly notice the difference if they try an inferior coffee somewhere else, which is yet another reason why our customers become loyal fans.’ 

producing a better cup of coffee

Of course, producing a great cup of coffee also requires a great barista, which is why every franchisee receives training support from Columbus’s own Head Barista Trainer. In Whangarei, franchisees Lynda and Glen Burgess have one of the country’s top baristas, Brittany Cox, to lead their team. ‘Brittany has an amazing talent for being able to talk customers through the tasting process without blinding them with science. 

‘Our reputation for having the best coffee in Whangarei is key to the success of our business. We already have 18 staff and we get through over 40 kilos of beans per week, so business really is booming.’ 

Lynda and Glen opened their Columbus Coffee franchise within Mitre 10 MEGA in Whangarei four years ago. The collaboration between the brands has proved to be highly successful in 31 locations around the country, and Whangarei is no exception. 

‘The combination has proven to be as big a winner as we hoped,’ says Lynda. ‘We have a franchise of which I cannot speak highly enough. Columbus Coffee listen to the franchisees and really care for us. Support has been fantastic and they always seem to be one step ahead of every other brand in their marketing.’ 

customers love their coffee

Ian and Tess France have found the same thing. ‘Neither of us knew anything about running a café before we bought our franchise, but Columbus has been a popular destination here in Riccarton for 12 years. We’d been customers many times so when the owners wanted a new challenge we decided to take the bull by the horns and change careers,’ says Ian. ‘As we found, Columbus makes it easy to learn and then it’s a matter of being hospitable to everyone who comes in.

‘Of course, coffee and baristas are central to the success of the brand. The beauty of the Columbus system is that we’ve been able to train all our staff and bring them up to the same level, so customers don’t notice if their favourite barista is off for the day – their coffee will be of an equally high standard every time. We have two brilliant baristas on our team: one who was a franchise trainer in the UK, and Sam Laurie, who just won Columbus Coffee’s popular Barista of the Year competition – an annual event that assesses baristas from all over the country to an international standard. Winning brought quite a bit of kudos to the store, but perhaps best of all was the regular customer who promptly bought Sam a bottle of champagne! It quite blew my socks off, but was a superb example of how important coffee is to our customers – and how strong the relationship is between our customers and our baristas.’ 

develop and grow

Columbus Coffee remains a proudly independent, proudly New Zealand-owned and operated franchise. General manager Peter Webster says that the company still has new franchises available in many parts of the country, including growing metropolitan areas. ‘Opportunities in Mitre 10 MEGA and high street locations are available from $280,000 to $400,000,’ says Peter. 

‘It’s a sizeable investment, but the returns can be excellent. We put a great deal of effort into providing our franchisees with everything they need to run successful, sustainable businesses. You don’t need hospitality experience, but you do need to have good people and management skills.

‘As Lynda in Whangarei said, we work with our franchisees to develop and grow. If you like our culture and fancy building a highly successful business on the back of our reputation for great coffee and great food, I’d like to hear from you.’  

This advertorial is taken from Franchise New Zealand magazine Year 25 Issue 4

See this article as it appears in our latest issue – download the full magazine here 

Contact details for Columbus Coffee

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We welcome links from other websites to this article. Please note that this article is copyright © Franchise NZ Marketing Limited, Franchise New Zealand magazine and Franchise New Zealand On Line. While it may be downloaded for personal use, no part may be reproduced on any other website, in electronic or printed form or in any other form whatsoever.

advertiser info: franchise business opportunity

industry food and beverage investment $250,000 - $450,000 number in NZ 71 and globally 71 FANZ member yes
contact Peter Webster telephone email listing funding info evaluate

advertiser info

industry food and beverage email phone
FANZ member yes
investment from $250,000 - $450,000
number in NZ 71
number globally 71
contact Peter Webster

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