College Couple Looking for Cheap Coffee Opened Farron Café, Now with 235 Kiosks in the Philippines

Being a college student is something that is quite challenging, not just because you are trying to earn a degree but you are expected to be an adult and start taking control of your life but you still have no means of fully being in control because you still don’t have a job.

Many college students live on a limited allowance, something that becomes rather challenging especially in times when they have to stay up late and study or meet up with groupmates over projects.

In times like this, you need coffee to keep you awake but a lot of coffee shops, the high-end ones serving delicious coffees, have prices that aren’t exactly student-friendly.

Photo credit: Entrepreneur PH

Banking on this premise, then college students Farwa and Ronnel Hombre (they still weren’t married at the time) decided to open a coffee shop offering specialty coffee at affordable prices. A 12-oz cup of coffee frappe was sold for Php39 while the tallest cup (16 oz) sold for Php59; at the time, specialty coffee shops are already selling coffee at more than Php100 per cup.

This was back in 2009. They opened the first Farron Café in the U-belt area of Manila while they were both in third year college. Farwa was taking up nursing while Ronnel was taking up a business administration course.

The café didn’t even have tables and chairs but it was such a huge hit among the students that the two opened a second shop on their second month – and it was still a huge success!

Photo credit: Entrepreneur PH

Soon, the two received advice from Ronnel’s professor to take a loan as leverage to open a bigger shop. Because the money wasn’t enough, the two had to pawn their gadgets and Farwa had to let go of her jewelry until they came up with Php100,000 for the shop’s capital.

They leased a space in Manila for their third and bigger version of Farron Café. They hit the jackpot with this one and were able to recover their investment in just 6 months. To grow the business, the two reinvested their profits.

In 2012, they opened the business for franchise after receiving a lot of inquiries.

Today, less than 10 years after the couple opened the business as college students, Farron Café already has 235 branches across the country!

Photo credit: Entrepreneur PH

If you’re interested, Farron Café is available for franchise at just Php500,000; the price already includes the franchise fee, equipment, initial inventories, and the kiosk that could fit in a space of 4 sq m.

Cup prices have increased by Php20 since the coffee shop opened in 2009 but the Php59 to Php79 price range is still much cheaper than the specialty coffee offered in other shops.

Joy Adalia
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