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Jakarta Post

From Jay-Z to Serena Williams, celebrities invest in local coffee chain Kopi Kenangan

  • Made Anthony Iswara
    Made Anthony Iswara

    The Jakarta Post

Bali   /   Mon, December 23, 2019   /   05:27 pm
From Jay-Z to Serena Williams, celebrities invest in local coffee chain Kopi Kenangan Ice coffee from Indonesia's homegrown coffee chain Kopi Kenangan. (Instagram/KopiKenangan.ID)

Billionaire rapper Jay-Z and tennis star Serena Williams are among global public figures who have invested their funds to back the growth of Indonesia’s homegrown coffee chain Kopi Kenangan, the chain’s CEO confirmed on Monday.

“Kopi Kenangan has the vision to take [the brand] internationally on the global stage. That’s why we decided to find investors that could help us with such brand-building,” Kopi Kenangan cofounder and CEO Edward Tirtanata told The Jakarta Post.

Edward said the deal had been sealed last week.

Williams invested through her venture company, Serena Ventures, while Jay-Z made the investment through his venture firm Arrive, a subsidiary of entertainment management company Roc Nation Company, Edward explained. 

Arrive cofounder and president Neil Sirni said his team was “inspired” by Kopi Kenangan’s “tenacity, vision and ability to execute”, citing the coffee chain’s rapid expansion to 18 cities, 200 stores and over 1,800 employees since its debut in 2017 as proof of such qualities.

“We’re excited to be an investor in and partner to Kopi Kenangan as they introduce Indonesian-style coffee to the world,” Sirni said in a press statement published on Sunday.

While he is unable to disclose the exact investment value for the two deals, Edward said the growth funding that Kopi Kenangan had secured from all investors now amounted to “more than US$20 million” — adding to Sequoia India’s $20 million investment that kicked off the expansion last June.

Aside from the two stars, world-renowned basketball player Caris LeVert as well as salad retailer and unicorn Sweetgreen CEO and cofounder Jonathan Neman were also included on the list of investors for the expansion.

In a release, Kopi Kenangan’s owners said they were planning to add more than a thousand new stores over the next two years and expand the chain across Southeast Asia.

“We want to build a legendary brand,” Edward said, “We have come a long way since our humble beginnings two years back and we want to continue learning and improving our service and products to meet the expectations of our customers in Indonesia and other markets.”

The expansion was not Kopi Kenangan’s first million-dollar deal as venture firm Alpha JWC Venture injected $8 million worth of capital into the brand last year.