In early November 2019, Guido, La Marzocco International CEO, went to Shanghai for a short trip to China. He had a tight three day schedule, during which he met with the Chinese team of La Marzocco, and worked on an exclusive interview with CTI (click to read). Also visiting the coffee market and coffee chain brands in Shanghai, including Manner Coffee, Peet’s Coffee and Wagas, a thrilling experience to say the least.
It’s hard to imagine that Manner Coffee, a specialty coffee chain brand having over 50 stores in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Suzhou, and Chengdu has a short 4 year history. Its first store occupied an area of only two square meters，Mr. Han Yulong and his wife Ms. Lu Jianxia, founders of the Manner Coffee, equipped the coffee shop with a La Marzocco, which was little known in China at the time. Presently, all Manner Coffee shops are standardly equipped with La Marzocco machines. In the meantime, Manner coffee stores have been springing up like mushrooms, in locations that include major shopping malls and office buildings.
Guido visited Manner Coffe’s Taikoo Hui store. In addition to selling coffee, this location has a Manner bakery that provides customers freshly baked bread. Founders Han Yulong and his wife met Guido and exchanged ideas on coffee culture and their business management philosophy.
In the traditional view, coffee was introduced to China from Europe and professionals in the coffee industry tended to replicate and restore the European coffee culture. Since its establishment, Manner has always adhered to the concept of “make coffee part of your life” and has insisted on providing customers a high-quality coffee and experience, also including affordability as a key element in their mission.
Manner holds three elements as foundations to their success: quality, equipment, and talent. Han Yulong, who started as a barista and roaster, insists on equipping the stores with world-class equipment: La Marzocco; “top-level equipment can guarantee the stable quality of coffee and perfectly delivers the essence of espresso”. As to the cultivation of talent, Manner has established its coffee academy Manner Lab, certified by SCA.
Through regular training of baristas and strict quality control, Manner Lab has cultivated professional baristas. Manner also takes pride in its coffee beans. Han firmly believes that “Chinese coffee beans are no less than foreign coffee beans.” In constant cooperation with coffee farms, cultivation, processing, and transportation. Having a roastery of more than 4,000 square meters in Tongzhou, Jiangsu, supplying coffee to all its stores and e-commerce platforms. By its top-quality equipment, inhouse training system and in-depth cultivation in the coffee industry, Manner has achieved the goal of serving high-quality coffee and at a relatively low price.