BIRMINGHAM, AL -- Royal Cup Coffee has opened a new facility for its growing EspresShip division, which ships coffee, tea and allied products to offices and homes not on its commercial routes.
Founded in 1896, Royal Cup imports and roasts coffees that it distributes, along with its signature teas, in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. It also operates an extensive office coffee service route on local and national levels.
EspresShip has reportedly shipped more than 4 million pounds of coffee since its inception in 2000. Its annual sales have grown from $100,000 to a projected $8.9 million this year.
To accommodate its growth, EspresShip moved from a 5,000-sq.ft. facility to a 35,000 sq.ft. warehouse in June. Customers nationwide -- from single-person homes to hotels and large corporations -- can order 24/7 over the phone, by fax or online and EspresShip delivers the products directly to them from the new facility via UPS ground shipping. Wells Fargo is among its larger corporate clients.
"Royal Cup recognized that there was a growing demand from restaurants, hotels and small businesses in areas not reached by our traditional route delivery trucks," said EspresShip's Owen Harris. "After creating and marketing the EspresShip service, we uncovered an even bigger demand for our products than we could have anticipated. Our success with EspresShip in the office coffee market has already carried over to the home consumer market, and we expect growth to continue."
Harris added that strategic marketing efforts have further boosted demand. Last year, EspresShip introduced a sales video to demonstrate the ordering and delivery process, which helped to recruit new business for Royal Cup. This month, the company launched a new website -- espresship.com -- to further penetrate the home consumer market. Royal Cup's coffees and teas are not sold through retail businesses, so EspresShip is the only way home consumers can purchase them.