A student-run coffee startup is parking their mobile brewery on campus to provide students with their daily dose of caffeine.
Coffee and tea startup BrewBike’s Austin branch is relocating to the south entrance of the William C. Powers, Jr. Student Activity Center on Oct. 21 from their previous location behind the University Co-op. Their coffee is stored in kegs inside a cart attached to a bicycle.
“We aspired to be even more accessible to students by getting on campus,” said marketing sophomore Ivy Lee, chief marketing officer for BrewBike ATX.
The company first launched at Northwestern University in fall 2015 and has since expanded to three other universities nationwide, including UT.
“We realized there was a need for good coffee at college campuses,” CEO Sarah Lee said. “Your options for coffee were a Starbucks that you had to wait 15 minutes in line for, cafeteria coffee or going off campus. BrewBike comes to colleges with a new option for delicious and convenient coffee.”
Lee said the startup is entirely student-run, from the brewing of the coffee to the selling. The goal is to help students build business skills and a sense of entrepreneurship, Lee said.
“Our operations (are) unique in that we have students owning the process from brewing the coffee to serving it on the bike,” business sophomore Lee said. “Any coffee shop can give you good coffee. But when you purchase a BrewBike cold-brew, you’re getting quality cold-brew and supporting the next generation of American entrepreneurs.”
Advertising senior Mara Techam said she thinks working for BrewBike could be a good opportunity to tap into the entrepreneurial industry.
“It’s always cool to see new things popping up (on campus) and challenging more traditional brands that have a bigger market share like Starbucks and Dunkin’,” Techam said. “When you start anything entrepreneurial, it’s a great talking point later, and it makes you a real asset if you go to a bigger company one day.”
Ivy Lee said BrewBike’s business model focuses on fast service. She said the average time spent to get BrewBike customers coffee is around 45 seconds.
“Our customers can order a cup and be on their way to class in less than a minute,” Ivy Lee said. “You can’t ask for a better solution when you’re sleep deprived and in between classes.”