Coffi Co started in two shipping containers in Porth Teigr in Cardiff Bay. Fast Forward to the present day and there are now six Coffi Co sites across Wales.
The idea for Coffi Co came about when owner and director Justin Carty decided that he wanted to offer something different to the other coffee shops and chains that were around. “Everything out there seemed dated and the same - there was nothing new. We wanted to create a more modern, evolved offering … something new and exciting where people could come and socialise over a coffee or drinks” said Justin, and in 2014, Coffi Co was born.
As any new business owner will know, there are often some challenges when starting out, and for Justin one of these challenges was not having the right tools in place to manage the long queues of customers. “We employed more staff purely to stand at our till systems and take orders. This would create very large queues and cause customer frustration. We were a modern operation surrounded by payments system providers that are stuck in a different decade. It was absolutely impossible to find a service provider with an integrated all-round solution that would drive service and business efficiencies.”
What the business needed was a solution that allowed them to operate an order-to-table solution, so they reached out to Square.“Due to the scale of our operation, we required a bespoke solution that would work for our company. We wanted a system that would remain cost-efficient and ensure the release of next-day funds”.
The team opted for Square for Restaurants POS, which they use alongside Square KDS, Square Terminal and Square Stand. Square was able to understand their needs and work to deliver a tailored solution for them, helping them to ease the pressure on staff serving queues at the till, and allowing them to take staff off the tills to focus on other parts of the business. “We can now utilise these staff members to run our stores in the day to day operation,” said Justin of the improvements that the move to Square brought about.
The ability of Justin and the team at Coffi Co to tackle challenges head-on was even more apparent when their operations closed overnight due to the pandemic. They regrouped on how best to run their business in light of the situation and government guidelines and quickly pivoted from being an in-person only restaurant to serving their customers using Square Online and PepperHQ for their order-ahead app, allowing them to reopen and trade again in a whole new COVID compliant format 3 weeks after the initial forced closure.
“We made the decision to immediately change our operations and work with the current situation and guidelines. The team at Square essentially pivoted overnight to listen to our requirements and delivered solutions that allowed us to start trading online efficiently and effectively”.
Not only was it simple for Coffi Co to implement a new online ordering system that worked effectively, but their customers responded to it positively too. “It is simple to register your details and once you’ve signed up the ordering system is simple & easy to us”. In fact, the response was so positive that 100% of their business activity is now driven by Square and their order-ahead app. “It is reliable, very efficient, and has allowed us to continue trading during one of the most unpredictable years to date,” Said Justin.
Coffi Co has not only gone from operating in-person only restaurants to online, they have also grown the number of locations that they have, and the demand from their customers shows no sign of slowing down. A year on from launching their order ahead app, they have over 100k downloads, allowing Justin and team to continue serving their customers during the pandemic, and also to reposition themselves for significant expansion in the future. “We like to keep up to date with the demand, we don’t want to become a dated offer. We are always looking to improve and develop our business model to provide an experience to our customers. We like to make our locations a destination to meet with friends and family and create a great social environment.”