A Brew with…Kelsey Anderson of Kacao Chocolaterie1 Oct 2015
This month we are talking to Kelsey Anderson from Richmond-based, Kacao Chocolaterie. The 24-year-old entrepreneur has learned a thing or two about running her own business from dad – OpenCRM’s founder, Graham.
Tell us about Kacao
I launched Kacao in October 2014 and opened my shop, in the Stables at Sedbury Hall, in January of this year.
My artisan chocolates are all fresh and handmade in my kitchen and I am constantly developing new flavours infusions that are proving hugely popular with my customers.
As a young entrepreneur, stepping out on my own was quite daunting but it has been an amazing experience. I love being creative and having fun with my products.
Did you always want to run your business?
I have always been a lover of all things chocolate but wasn’t until I went travelling in South America that I really thought seriously about a career in the industry.
I visited some of the plantations where farmers grow the world’s best cacao beans and by the end of the trip I knew I wanted to combine my passion for creativity and love of chocolate into a business.
What’s the best business advice Graham has given you?
Dad is really supportive of Kacao – it’s been a massive learning curve for me but he is always there to help and guide me. I think the best advice he gave me was to believe in myself and keep doing what I love.
He is also handy to have at events and festivals – he’s a natural at selling chocolate. Plus, when I was first starting out, he took samples of my chocolates to the office and they guys were nice enough to give me loads of constructive feedback.
Does Kacao have an OpenCRM system?
Of course! I couldn’t function without my OpenCRM system. It keeps me organised – this summer I was all over the region and beyond attending festivals and events so it really helped to have all my information in the one place.
And I am just about to launch my Christmas range so again it’s going to get a bit manic as we move towards December. I also have a pre-ordering service, so customers can place an order now but the chocolates won’t be sent out until just before Christmas to ensure they are fresh.
If I didn’t have the OpenCRM system to collate and arrange all this information, it would be a huge stress.
Before I got my start in the tech industry as part of Apple’s UK Mac launch team, I was a professional drummer (notice I didn’t say musician). But once I got in, I was hooked and I’ve been involved in the tech industry, primarily software development, for over 35 years. I founded this company and I now have the enviable title of System Architect (as well as Managing Director) here at OpenCRM.