Press Release: MBF Provides its First Loan of 2016 in Continued Support of Panther Coffee
Date: January 8, 2015
(305) 379-7070 Ext. 201
MBF started the year providing a new loan to its very first loan recipient, Panther Coffee. Since 2011, when MBF provided startup funds to Panther Coffee, the coffeehouse has taken Miami by storm.
With three locations in Miami’s trendiest neighborhoods (Wynwood, South Beach, and Coconut Grove) and two locations underway in Miami’s MiMo district and Little Haiti, over 200 restaurants and cafés serving their brew, and their wholesale distribution, Panther Coffee has undoubtedly grown into Miami’s most popular coffeehouse.
Panther Coffee’s high-quality and in-house roasted coffee beans, innovative way of serving a cup of java, and chic and comfortable interior design, all warrant the long lines of customers that extend far beyond the doors at their three locations.
MBF was there for us in our startup phase when no other bank was willing to give us a chance. MBF also offers an easier and more seamless process than traditional banks. For these reasons MBF holds a special place in our heartsLeticia Pollock
Panther Coffee’s mission goes beyond making great tasting coffee. In sourcing, roasting, and preparing the coffee, the management team strives to create a transaction that is mutually beneficial for all stakeholders including the coffee producer, their workers and the surrounding communities, Panther Coffee employees, and consumers.
The owners and founders, Leticia and Joel Pollock, source coffee from carefully selected growers in Brazil, Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador, Ethiopia and Kenya. They are also excited to soon start serving Haitian coffee beans after working extensively with growers and St. Thomas University to produce a quality coffee crop.
Customers can learn about the history of the growers and their coffee beans from information sheets that are showcased throughout the coffeehouse at each location.
In addition to coffee, Panther Coffee also offers its customers locally sourced teas, baked goods, beer, and wine, as well as merchandise including bottles, shirts, and hats.
The management team’s close relationship with the community further strengthens the Panther Coffee brand. With local art on the walls, Panther Coffee hosts weekly music, chess, karaoke, and open mic nights based upon community members requests.
While Panther Coffee is a booming company today, like other startups, Leticia and Joel struggled to access financing when they started their business in 2011. This is when they came in contact with MBF, which recently had launched a loan program for minority-owned businesses in the City of Miami.
The extensive experience Leticia and Joel had from working in the coffee industry and their dedication to their craft led MBF’s board to grant a loan to Panther Coffee to open their very first location in Wynwood. With assistance from organizations such as MBF and their hard work, Leticia and Joel have successfully grown their company from two employees in 2011 to a team of 70 in 2016.
Panther Coffee is one of the 40+ minority-owned companies that MBF has provided a loan to in the past four years in an effort to advance economic development in the City of Miami. Other companies that have received loans from the Foundation include Sugar Yummy Mama, Magic City Chefs, FAMA Publishing, Two Coats Painting, Miami Smokers, Bunnie Cakes, BeeFree Media,Moonlighter, and Medical Equipment Solutions.
To learn more about Panther Coffee, visit their website: http://www.panthercoffee.com/ and follow them on Social Media @PantherCoffee.