I am so happy today to have an incredible guest, Amani Kiflemariam. At an early age, she came from Ethiopia to the UK. She finished university to become a lawyer and spent years working in banking including ESG (environmental, social and governance strategy), before launching Amatte, a premium eco-friendly business.
The first brand she launched is Amatte coffee, a premium brand recognized by the London Coffee Festival, Sunday Times Caffeine Magazine and many others.
Amani shared with us the story of how she came up with the idea to start a business in the coffee industry. Coffee has a special place in her African heritage and family history, so creating the Amatte coffee brand also meant reconnecting with her roots and the land she came from. After extensive research on the ground, she mapped all issues in the supply chain process, such as actively supporting biodiversity, land protection and making a change in terms of compensating fairly, (typically in Ethiopia women working in the coffee industry earn less than a dollar a day). From this she created a sustainable business model.
It wasn’t easy for her to give up her job in finance and become a full-time entrepreneur, but her passion made her take the leap. The situation with Covid actually gave her the courage to do so and create a more significant impact.
At Amatte they make an impact by communicating and working directly with farmers (both female and male) and focus on regenerative farming and looking after the land. The business also ensures fair payment and has set up a fund to invest in the local community, developing skills, employment and education.
How and when did you come up with the idea? (03:28)
Revisiting Ethiopia (07:50)
How did you start your entrepreneurial path? (11:00)
Developing business while still holding a full-time job (14:58)
When did you decide to reveal your idea to others? (16:25)
How Covid affected your business (18:07)
What was the biggest setback for you so far? (24:40)
The story behind the brand (26:40)
The most significant influence in your life (30:57)
If you could have coffee with anyone, who would it be and why? (33:00)
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