We're One Year Old!

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It's crazy to think that it was only a year ago that we were pitching a class project. None of us could have even imagined that this is where NASTEA & Co. would be a year later but we're so grateful for all the love + support and excited for what's to come.

Cheers, to another caffeinated year & many more!

just the beginning...

Of monthly updates! Until we have the (wo)manpower to write blog entries on a consistent basis, the team decided that we'll begin by focusing on monthly updates for our mentors, past professors and faculty, and all NASTEA fans!

This is a big one since our last update was back in July, 2017.

 

New Flavor 🍵+ ☕️

After five R&D sessions and many variations of the recipe, we released our second flavor in mid-October!! The white coffee dirty matcha (matcha latte with a shot of white coffee espresso). We're currently sweetening it with local honey but working with a new supplier from Oregon to help us grow. We've R&D'd about eight different types of honey and it is crazy how different they all taste. We're pretty stoked about this one particular honey and think it tastes similar, if not better to what we're using now so stay tuned!

 

13 Locations in Seattle, Wa 📍

We're extremely proud that you can now find a bottle of NASTEA at 13 retail locations throughout Seattle! Despite our relatively short shelf-life, these local retailers have given us a chance to prove our product and our company. We're so grateful to these businesses for supporting us and teaching us the ropes of the industry.

Outreach takes a lot of time and persistence but one of the most exciting things that happened these past few weeks is that people are starting to reach out to us with interest in our product! Cue more happy dances. If you are interested in carrying our beverages, please contact us here. We would love to connect!

 

GOOD-BYE, RIDESHARE. hello, new car! 🚗

None of the founders owned a car and rideshare was inefficient and expensive when public transportation wasn’t an option. We initially thought we could tackle this problem by partnering with a transportation company but quickly realized at our current volume and the smaller businesses we work with, this wasn’t a suitable option. Luckily, one of our founders, Karin, was convincing her boyfriend Cody to trade his sports car for something she could drive. In December, she succeeded and making deliveries, getting to our commercial kitchen, meetings, snowboarding, and trips to IKEA have never been easier.

 

Social Media + Influencer partnerships 🌱

We love connecting with our customers and social media makes it easy! It makes our day when we see people enjoying NASTEA on their Instagram story or when they comment on our posts. We've recently started partnering with local influencers in Seattle to grow our brand and it's been a blast meeting them, sharing our story, and then seeing them create their own beautiful content with our bottles. We are currently at 656 followers and growing! 

 

Jones + Foster Accelorator Program

"The startup process is messy and unpredictable — licensing intellectual property, producing a manufacture-ready prototype, lining up customers, raising money — all are critical and daunting. The Jones + Foster Accelerator program helps early-stage, student-led companies through those decisive first six months." We loved the whole experience. The program held us accountable for goals that we set for ourselves, the five mentors we had were invaluable and gave us so many good advice and connections, and meeting fellow entrepreneurs was motivating and really fun. We highly recommend the program to any student-led startups in the Seattle area, it's open to students not just from UW!

 

What's Next?

Our primary focus right now is extending our shelf-life to a minimum of three-weeks so we can start working with local distributors. Last week we tested out an induction sealer and things are looking good...we'll know if it was successful in a few weeks with a couple more trials! We are also researching pasteurization techniques and reaching out to companies who may be able to help us with a solution.

 
Karin Soyama1 Comment