Oliver and I get pretty enthused about discovering that point of a Startup or Creator's Journey. This is a sneak peek into the Origin Story of Nicholas B. Haffter Von Heide.
As a matter of course, startups who pledge allegiance to coffee in one way or the other already have my attention. Nicholas is the founder of Fresh Pressed Coffee Company. The brand was established in 2018 with Farmer's Markets where the beans began impacting communities with over 9,000 locations across the United States by 2019. Fresh Pressed Coffee beans were at the heart of your local YMCA raising $10,000 by 2020. As a hobby, coffee has a side-effect of thinking. Call it mindfulness in every cup, but no matter what kind of coffee you like, there’s a few minutes of attentiveness that comes with every cup. When forced to spend a few minutes paying attention to the same thing on the regular, our minds—natural wanderers—seek connections. We look for stories. Where does our coffee come from? Why does it cost three dollars for a cup of coffee but I can get a whole pound for twelve dollars? The math is weird.
Recently, Nicholas shared a lot of factoids about Pink Bourbon and Geisha. It’s a blend that will be roasted by one of their Impact Partners: Veda Roasting. We discussed a lot of technical stuff surrounding origin, blends and pricelessness of this commodity I'm rather fond of. Coffee is the second most traded commodity on the world, next to gold.
Rediscovering new facets of the coffee world has led me to feel like Nicholas is a sommelier of coffee. Coffee is mysterious. And it doesn’t offer a lot of answers in itself. So coffee ends up as a gateway into a wider world knowledge, because it suggests questions and it forces a little bit of focus.
A lot of people I know use “To fuel my coffee addiction” as an ironic excuse for little things like holding down a job. Coffee invites that kind of humor.
Nicholas Haffter Von Heide used it as an entirely un-ironic business philosophy.
He has had a few tipping points in his career, each of them falling like pebbles at the top of a hill and leading eventually towards a decision to use coffee as a tool for world change. An aspiration shared with many coffee addicts, I think. Speaking as one, I often wish my addiction to coffee would be so kind as to change the world for the better. Since I’m going to drink the coffee anyway, it’d be awfully convenient
if I could help the world grow into a better place by getting my daily caffeine.
Well, a possible way to do it may be in the hands of Haffter Von Heide.
His first tipping point happened when he started Point Blank Coffee to fuel his coffee addiction. He may have had some inklings where he’d go with it someday, but in his own words funding his coffee addiction was the highest goal of his first company.
Big changes need big tools. And Nick’s opportunity to flesh out a skeletal idea came in 2017 when he attended a veterans conference likewise attended by a great many people who had guiding power over the supply lines of 7-Eleven. At this conference, Nick heard a keynote speaker talk about the principles of delivering an effective pitch (principles which, maybe, he’ll outline for us). At the same conference, Nick delivered his pitch for expanding his coffee cravings. It must have been a good pitch, because, a long story made short, he ended up with a deal to supply coffee to nine thousand 7-Elevens around the world by 2018.
At that point, he pivoted his business into Fresh Pressed Coffee Company.
The Next Even Bigger Thing
So that’s cool. That’s interesting. But the main reason it’s valuable to this story is it gave Nick the resources he needed for the next big thing.
Because the next big thing was a disruption of the world’s supply lines. Nick had a deal with one big farm in El Salvador. He got all his coffee from this one farm and redistributed it to those thousands of 7-Elevens.
In earlyish 2020, though, shipping in and out of El Salvador was greatly restricted when folks reacted to Covid 19. No more coffee for Nick.
Unless he changed how he did business.
At this point, Nick’s been in the coffee business for a while. He’s seen supply lines. He knows where the coffee comes from. Whenever you buy a cup of coffee, he knows how those three to five dollars gets split up and who gets paid.
Know who doesn’t get paid well? I’ll tell you who. But in a second.
This video tells a lot of the story…To be continued: Have a look at Oliver's "Wait or Work – Nicholas Haffter Von Heide’s Origin Story" in the Fresh Pressed Coffee Company
Want to share your Tipping Point Story? Reach out to me here or make it a quick study for one of the writers in our team and share the quick version of it here: