Rose N Crantz Roasting Co. is likely a familiar name for Thunder Bay’s coffee aficionados.

Jamie Nichols - Rose N CrantzFor owner Jamie Nichols, building Rose N Crantz was truly a passion project. After returning to Thunder Bay in 2013, he purchased a home roaster.

While the roasting process started out as a hobby, it quickly grew into a business, and a successful one - today, the company’s product can be found in dozens of Thunder Bay stores.

Jamie agreed to tell the CEDC more about himself, and Rose N Crantz Roasting Co., for Small Business Week.

  • What started you on the entrepreneurial journey?

○     Caffeine addiction and a love of great coffee started this journey. Jamie was introduced to freshly roasted, third-wave coffee while living in Yellowknife and couldn’t go back to larger commercial brands once he moved home to Thunder Bay. It started as a hobby and became a business and a full-time pursuit before he even fully realized that was where it was going. The inspiration to dive headfirst into it came from the support and encouragement of friends and family, some of whom already owned or operated small businesses in Thunder Bay.

  • Where did you turn for assistance/mentoring?

○     The Entrepreneur Centre and the CEDC gave us the assistance and mentoring that we desperately needed to get things going, and six years later they continue to help in more ways than we can count

○     Other local businesses (particularly Sweet Escape Cake Cafe & Bakery owned by Julie Einarson) provided advice, support, and encouragement while establishing the business

○     Friends and family provided assistance when choosing a name and creating a logo (local artist Christopher Merkley designed the current logo)

  • What were some of the biggest life lessons you’ve learned along the way?

○     Ask for help and accept it when available

○     Things will go wrong, stuff will break, and you’ll just address each challenge as it comes

○     Being grateful and saying thank you has more power than you realize

  • Why Thunder Bay?

○     Thunder Bay is Jamie’s hometown

○     Thunder Bay LOVES supporting local

○     In 2013 when the business began, there were very limited options for high quality, locally roasted coffee in the area

  • What advice would you give to someone who’s just started their entrepreneurial journey?

○     Build a great team - work with people you trust, rely on, and enjoy spending time with. Get a good accountant and lawyer on board as well.

  • What was something that was unexpected in this journey?

○     The importance and value of social media - you never know when it will result in a direct sale or offer the opportunity to engage with customers and community

  • What was the greatest moment in this journey?

○     The first time Jamie was asked to give a public talk on coffee as a recognized expert

  • If you could be a food, which would it be?

○     Coffee, but definitely not decaf

  • What is your business’ short pitch?

○     Love the coffee you drink and drink the coffee you love!

To find out more about Rose N Crantz Roasting Co., or purchase some of their coffee, visit rnccoffee.ca.

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