In trying times, being a part of a large, welcoming community strengthens and unifies each of its members. This is no different for the NGLCC community, as Juan Arroyave, co-founder and owner of Certified LGBTBE® Kikos Coffee & Tea, says!
“I am happy to belong to a community that supports each other no matter the situation,” he told NGLCC. “Being certified allowed me to submit my portfolio to big companies. I have met wonderful people and learned from them.”
Kikos Coffee imports and distributes Colombian coffee, as well as a variety of coffees and teas from other origins, to grocery stores, supermarkets, restaurants, and online retailers. It was founded in 2019 by Arroyave and Peter Burgos in Revere, Massachusetts, and was recently certified in 2020!
When Arroyave was asked about what was unique about Kikos Coffee, he cited his work as an entrepreneur to support other small, diverse businesses.
“I manage all the processes and it supports different minorities and small businesses,” he explained. “Besides, it’s REAL Colombian coffee. You can tell the difference!”
Arroyave is most proud of building a name for himself and his business without financial muscle. He has also set numerous goals for his business over the course of the next several years.
“In 5 years, I see myself working full time in my business and having at least 10 types of coffees and roasts as well as coffee shops,” he said.
Arroyave emphasized the importance of community when offering advice to aspiring entrepreneurs.
“Networking is key!” he said. At NGLCC, we couldn’t agree more!
Want to become a Certified LGBTBE® owner? Click here!
For additional ways to help you, your business, and the LGBT community during this time, visit the NGLCC COVID-19 Resource Hub for the LGBT Business Community.