From Tuning Cars to Crafting Coffee


Jamaica Blue New Zealand is a franchise that attracts bright, entrepreneurial talents. As such, franchisees have some unique back stories!

James Xu was a full-time automotive technician before 2009, when he first made the leap into franchising with Jamaica Blue in Manukau. Since then, he also managed the Jamaica Blue in Auckland Airport before buying a new franchise with Jamaica Blue in the bustling Auckland Hospital in February 2017.

James says that he was attracted to Jamaica Blue because he wanted to be part of something big, which had immediate brand awareness. He felt this would give him the confidence to operate a business within the competitive café industry.

An added attraction was the great support and training that Jamaica Blue offers. As he didn’t have hospitality experience before, he was impressed by the comprehensive Jamaica Blue training programs which cover every facet of the hospitality business and equip franchisees with the confidence to offer superlative customer service. The support from Jamaica Blue is ongoing, with a local marketing team ensuring that the business is always innovating.

With a contemporary, cool store design and continually updated seasonal menus serving delicious food, for James it was a natural choice. As he says,

“Jamaica Blue is a well-established franchise which has more than 170 stores across the globe. They provide franchisees with essential training and offer a great local marketing and support team. I also love the modern shop designs.”

No day is the same for Jamaica Blue Franchisees. James is an early riser and also something of a perfectionist who likes to be there when the shop opens at 6.30am. As his store is located within one of the country’s busiest hospitals, there are plenty of customers looking for an early breakfast or coffee.

James says that they service regular customers – hospital staff and long-term patients and visitors – with whom he forges great relationships. A major focus of his day is ensuring that his team is working together well and delivering outstanding customer service. He is swift to deal with any problems and get everything back on track! He usually spends late afternoons readying the store for the next day, checking stock and ordering supplies.

Owning a café business is a dream for many. When asked what he wishes he’d been told before owning his own business, James says that being a business owner is ‘a big responsibility.’ However, he loves that responsibility and relishes that each day is different, bringing new challenges. He also fundamentally loves the buzz of hospitality:

“I enjoy serving our customers a great coffee or delicious meal to make their day brighter. I also like working with staff to achieve their goals. If you work hard, you can achieve.”

Jamaica Blue New Zealand is currently looking for new franchisees. If you’ve always dreamed of running your own business, this could be the opportunity you are looking for. Contact us today for more information.

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