Transforming a Passion for Coffee into a Successful Business

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Anthony Satterlee started his career waking up in the small hours of the morning to put on his barista apron and brew PJ’s coffee to serve the River Ridge, La., locals. Today, Anthony still wakes up early, but to open his PJ’s franchise location and get the store ready for the morning rush.

For years, Anthony worked as a barista in the morning and at Blockbuster in the evening, but one night out with friends someone suggested a new career path.

“I was out with my PJ’s coworkers one night, and we were having fun, joking around,” Anthony said. “My friend said, ‘Wouldn’t it be funny if Anthony bought the PJ’s?’ I thought, ‘Why would that be funny? I’d do a great job.’ I had a prove-them-wrong type of attitude.”

Just a week later, Anthony had begun the franchising process, and within two months, he was the owner the River Ridge PJ’s Coffee. Now 18 years into ownership, Anthony has learned a thing or two about coffee and his regulars.

A Strong Investment in Coffee

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Anthony was always a coffee lover, interested by different scents, roasts and brewing techniques. He was even more enthralled by PJ’s Coffee’s quality. The locally roasted beans and excellent quality control gave him a brand to stand behind.

Coffee isn’t a fad or trend. That’s why Anthony has had the same regulars coming in for years. It’s engrained in so many of their daily routines.

“I like that I can have a big impact on how people start their day,” Anthony said.

Navigating First-Time Ownership

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After being a PJ’s barista for years, Anthony was well acquainted with the brand, but with no ownership experience, he had to learn the back-end processes. Anthony developed these skills over time, but didn’t have to worry about building out a store, since he bought an existing location.

“Every business owner worries if they will have customers on day one,” Anthony said. “I didn’t have to worry about this with an existing location, but I did have to continue to meet my regulars’ expectations and their regular morning order.”

It was important for Anthony to make the transition seamless. With coffee being such an important part of guests’ morning routine, they expect consistency. Anthony’s barista knowledge helped in keeping guest satisfaction high.

Brewing Enthusiasm

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As a first-time business owner, Anthony loved having a franchisor to lean on. It bridged the knowledge gap and made the whole process simpler. Anthony finds the PJ’s corporate is a collective mind with plenty of ways to solve a problem, and the network of franchisees also presents various avenues of support.

Anthony enjoys ownership and encourages others to evaluate if they’re the right fit.

“Make sure you’re investing in a business that lines up with your lifestyle,” Anthony said. “For a coffee shop, you should be prepared to get into work early in the morning, ideally be a morning person.”

Anthony looks forward to waking up early each day and making it to his PJ’s. Moving forward, he wants to continue to be a mainstay in people’s morning and give them the boost they need.

Learn about investing in your passion for coffee and check out PJ’s Coffee franchise opportunities by downloading our franchise brochure today.