Black Entrepreneur Spotlight Series
We would greatly appreciate it if you could tell us a little about your company.
Boon Boona Coffee was established in 2012 with a focus on specialty coffees from the birthplace of coffee, East Africa. Since 2012 Boon Boona Coffee has built relationships with coffee farmers across several East African nations – Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, and Tanzania. Boon Boona Coffee is a socially conscious for profit business that acts as a conduit between East African coffees and the North American coffee consumer. Boon Boona Coffee currently offers coffee in two forms to consumers – Green Coffee (raw/unroasted) and Roasted Coffee. We are working hard to open our first café/roast house this year in our hometown of Seattle.
What was your childhood aspirations?
To do something in Africa, I didn’t know what though. In grade school when asked, “What would you like to be when you grow up?”, I would semi-seriously/jokingly respond, “A goat herder in my village”.
Growing up my parents always spoke of their village as heaven on Earth. My parents would quiz my siblings and I – “What tribe are you from?” “Who founded your village?” and “Give me the names of your grandfathers going back 7 generations?”. Both of my parents were born and raised in Eritrea, their love for the Motherland was verbally shared to my siblings and I, until we had the opportunity to visit ourselves. Even though I wasn’t born in the Motherland my household always felt like it – from language, to coffee.
Can you give our readers a quick answer on business advice?
If your hearts in it you will succeed – desire is what will help you through the rocky times.
What was your toughest challenge?
Indecision of how and when to get started was my biggest challenge
Once I began my journey into coffee it was incredible the doors that opened and the opportunities I found. The challenges I thought would be a herculean problem to solve were quickly resolved….only to find another challenge, but that is where desire and passion come into play you will need it to persevere as you inch closer to your goal.
CEO & Founder
Boon Boona Coffee