“Lots of people come to Cafeology, but few of them really know the story behind it. Can you tell us more about how it started?”
“In the beginning, it was just a start-up project proposed by the original BASE Team. Where we are now used to be some ordinary offices, but Entrepreneur Center decided to turn it into a co-working space, which gave birth to the BASE. Later on we found out that the BASE needs a sibling, a Café providing drink and snacks to recharge exhausted entrepreneurs. So here we are now!”
In Oct 2015, CTV from CityU reported the story of Cafeology.
“Turn classrooms into a Café! Woowww that sounds really cool. Wish I had witnessed it myself. So how are you guys doing?”
“Pretty well I think. We got 2041 likes in our FB page, even more than the BASE 😉 But we are always trying to be innovative, as we promised at the beginning. We design fresh drinks and green products on our own. We partner with social enterprises to deal with food waste. We did quite a few market campaign which caught public attention, even including some HK media like TVB, Mingpao, 100Most, etc. We recruited new members and restructured the team at the start of this semester. So far, I can say that we are pretty proud of what we have done.”
“What is it like to start your own business? Is it what you expected?”
“It’s hard to say yes… Being an entrepreneur is not an easy job, as far as I’m concerned. Even though, technically, I wouldn’t say we are entrepreneurs. But one thing for sure, you gain rich experience in so many aspects. There is no better way to learn than to start something from sketch yourself, and that’s exactly what happened to us. When we started Cafeology, with none of us knowing anything about how to make coffee or food industry. That was frustrating sometimes. But then, we had so many chances to practice our skills, from making coffee, drawing latte art, to preparing financial report, initiating market campaign etc. But our motivation goes far beyond that. By selling healthy snacks, and seeking cooperation with social enterprises, we are creating social value and impacts ourselves. It started to become much more meaningful, and this is what makes our university life different from others. We are still young enough to pursue what we love. Right? ;)”
“I heard that Cafeology would be shut down next semester. How did you take in this message?”
“Well, to be more specific, we will end our operation on April 29th. We are upset, of course. It’s been a hard time for me imagining my days without a proper coffee-I’ve to say, coffee elsewhere on campus fails to entertain me after consuming coffee in here for one year. It took some time to sink in, but we managed to earn the chance to continue running for this semester. That’s kind of nice. At least we have some time to put a period to our story here. And we are more than glad to see a entrepreneurial course happen here that could nurture more entrepreneurs in HKUST.”
Cafeology will be closed , but their story won’t stop there. And entrepreneurial spirits won’t stop there either. Please stay tuned with The BASE Entrepreneur Story Series, and let us introduce you to this fancy world.
Written by Riva @ The BASE