The owner of an Inverness coffee firm has high hopes for its future after seeing steady growth in the past few years.
Kevin Donnachie took over at Inverness Coffee Roasting eight years ago after 20 years in the insurance industry.
After taking in just £45 on his first day in charge, Kevin has taken the firm from strength to strength and now has 10 staff.
The Chapel Street company supplies more than 100 Highland businesses with their coffee beans and also offers machines.
Growing Inverness Coffee Roasting
When first taking over the business, Kevin found himself asking if he made the right decision – needing his sister to buy dinner.
He said: “I had an epiphany, or a breakdown – I decided it was time for a career change.
“Simon was looking to move on from the business and asked me if I would know anyone wanting to buy it. I said ‘yes, me’.
“I only took £45 on the first day in the shop and my sister had to buy my dinner.”
However, Kevin believes the business has seen big growth in his eight years at the helm.
He added: “We saw a turnover of £20,000 in the first year – it was just a local wee business.
“Now there’s 10 of us, we still have our own wee shop but we also supply over 100 local cafes.
“We spend almost all of our money on sourcing – I’ve been to Rwanda and Uganda to buy coffee.
“It’s been a huge investment – both financially and physically. I thought I knew what I was doing but it’s taken a lot of training to get to this point.”
The company has been fortunate enough to “never need to knock on doors” for business.
Almost all of its customers come through word of mouth according to Kevin.
Kevin believes a close relationship with clients and staff is a “vital” attribute in achieving success.
He said: “We have built this team for each other and seen our staff grow with us – Lorna and Cat have been with us for seven years.
“People enjoy coming to work here, that’s our greatest achievement.
“It’s also important to all of us that we grow with our customers – we’re really tight with clients.
“Knowing cafe owners by first name just gives it a personal touch and it shows how much you care.”
Kevin’s believes the next challenges for the business is eco-friendly packaging and sustainability.
He said: “Coffee packaging is actually quite difficult – it’s a lot more than just a bag.
“The beans need oxygen and to be able to breath so there has to be a valve.
“We want sustainable packaging – we’ve been trialling composting but it hasn’t really worked out how we’d want it to.
“It’s a big challenge but we’ll take it on and I’m hopeful we can conquer it.”