Chinese media outlet 36Kr reported on Monday that Seesaw Coffee has completed an A++ round financing worth several hundred million yuan. This round of financing was led by BA Capital and followed by Costone Capital and will be used for store expansion and digital construction nationwide.
Founded in Shanghai in 2012, Seesaw Coffee was one of the first premium coffee brands in China. In order to help further domestic consumption of coffee beverages, Seesaw Coffee carried out a brand upgrade in 2020 to better integrate the company’s specialties with the unique market demand in China. As a result, the company launched a creative product line of “maintaining the quality of coffee and emphasizing creative expression”.
The achievements brought by the direction adjustment are visible as the sales of creative coffee as its strategic product have increased by more than 50%. According to the company, the brand was able to grow its performance threefold in 2021. The same-store sales ratio exceeded the target set at the beginning of the year of 50% and reached 85%. The annual offline passenger flow reached 10 million while the number of members has also increased tenfold to 2 million in one year.
In view of the differentiated consumers in the coffee market and different consumption situations, the brand has a few subdivisions. Notably, the passenger flow in the morning market for breakfast increased by more than 20% year-on-year, while the brand also continued to develop its takeout services, resulting in an increase of more than 30%.
“In 2022, we plan to achieve three times of performance growth on the basis of 2021,” the brand declared.
With regard to the research and development of new products, the brand will draw inspiration from Chinese tea products, and on the basis of retaining the original coffee bean flavor, add seasonal fruits, sparkling water or ingredients that can simulate the aroma of fruits. The brand will also make limited editions for certain cities, for example, “West Lake Longjing American Style” is the top-selling beverage in Hangzhou.
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In order to maintain the quality of coffee, the brand has made great efforts in the back-end supply chain. In addition to its close cooperation with the world’s five major brands, the company launched its “Yunnan Ten-Year Plan” in 2014. The program went deep into Yunnan’s coffee-producing areas to help local coffee farmers improve the quality of their beans and promised to purchase beans that meet the quality requirements at a premium to increase the income of local coffee farmers.