Changing lives in the community … one cup and one heart at a time. That’s the mission of The Branch Gathering Place + Coffee House, which opened June 25 in the heart of downtown Greensburg, Indiana.
“The Branch is a place to come together, connect with others, and share friendships,” said Alex Sefton, executive director of local nonprofit All for One Ministry. “Coffee is just the delicious way to accomplish these goals!”
A Response to Community Needs
All for One Ministry created The Branch after a community needs assessment pinpointed the need for a local coffee shop.
“We wanted to create a place where all who enter are welcome, loved, and cared about. And, of course, enjoy terrific coffee and locally-baked treats.”
One barrier was their lack of specialty coffee experience. To learn how to open and run a coffee shop, Alex and Manager Samantha Baldwin turned to our 7 Steps to Success coffee shop startup program.
Alex’s expertise was in ministry and community services. He is a full-time student, working on a Master of Public Administration in nonprofit leadership from Indiana Wesleyan University. Samantha brings nearly 20 years of restaurant experience and a passion for the community
“Congratulations to Alex, Samantha, and their team at All for One Ministry on the opening of The Branch Gathering Place + Coffee House,” said Founder and President Greg Ubert. “We’re excited to help them achieve their unique vision for serving the local Greensburg community.”
Following Our 7 Steps to Coffee Shop Success
Through our proven coffee shop startup system, Crimson Cup has helped open over 200 independent coffee shops serving local communities in 30 states.
The 7 Steps program has been so successful that, even during the 2020 pandemic, we helped 19 entrepreneurs open new coffee shops. At least another 20 shops plan to open in 2021.
The program grew based on Greg’s book, Seven Steps to Success: a Commonsense Guide to Succeed in Specialty Coffee.
“We give new owners everything they need to succeed – starting with writing a solid coffee shop business plan and choosing a profitable location.”
“Our on site, hands-on training and ongoing support help them master all other aspects of running a prosperous coffee business.”Greg Ubert
Emphasizing Relationships and Training
Alex said he was drawn to Crimson Cup because of our emphasis on relationships.
“We wanted to connect with a company that invests in the communities they source coffee from.”
Through our Friend2Farmer initiatives, Crimson Cup invests in life-enriching projects to provide a better quality of life for coffee farmers, their families, and their communities.
A One-stop Shop for All Things Coffee
Alex also appreciated the benefit of working with a one-stop coffee business consultant and supplier.
“7 Steps Trainer Steve Bayless was amazing,” he said.
Bayless conducted intense, on-site training in drink preparation and coffee shop management during the week leading up to opening day. He will return to help out during the shop’s Grand Opening.
“Having a designated project manager who knows the ropes and has done this a hundred-plus times was essential,” Alex said.
Crimson Cup supplies award-winning coffee, coffee business expertise, and industry-leading coffee shop supplies.
“We offer all the benefits of a coffee shop franchise – and more – without expensive franchise fees or royalties,” Greg said.
Alex found Step Four, Focus on Marketing, the most valuable of the 7 Steps in Crimson Cup’s program.
“That’s really allowed us to draw more people to our products,” he said. “Having a dynamic presence on social media and creating one-on-one relationships with our customers is helping us grow.”
The Branch Gathering Place + Coffee House is Rooted in the Greensburg Community
Honoring its community roots, The Branch occupies the old Schlemmer Wholesale Building on the historic Greensburg Square. An antique candy case displays local homemade goodies.
Despite the vintage setting, the shop also uses technology to bring people together. It offers high-speed wireless internet and a conference room suitable for 12 people. Customers can also download an app to earn rewards and skip the line.
The coffee, roasted by Crimson Cup, is already winning rave reviews. “We’ve had overwhelmingly positive remarks about how good the drinks are,” Samantha said.
The most popular drink is the signature Branch Mocha, which melds white chocolate and caramel with espresso.
Advice to Prospective Coffee House Owners: Impact Your Community
After two-and-a-half years of preparing to open The Branch, Alex offered this advice for other prospective coffee shop owners:
“Do whatever you can to impact your community. At the end of the day, coffee is coffee. Your signature mark is your willingness to love on the community you serve.”
The Branch Gathering Place + Coffee House is open six days a week at 113 North Broadway Street in Greensburg, Indiana. To keep up with events and announcements, follow their Facebook and Instagram pages.