Young musician achieves entrepreneurial dream in coffee roasting business

Ou Kanli, a former musician, is now the owner of an online coffee roasting shop. His team looks for quality coffee beans from all over the world, and provides roasted coffee beans to shops and caffeine-loving consumers.

Ou started his business in 2013 with a capital of 20,000 yuan (almost 3,000 U.S. dollars). "I think I found a great point to start," he says.

Since the reform and opening-up, the living standards of Chinese people have been on the rise, and their interests have gone way beyond securing food on the table and putting clothes on their backs. Shifts in lifestyles have hit the Chinese society in waves, and with deeper pockets, people in the country are now looking to add new flavors to their life — and more are waking up to the sweet smell of coffee.

The explosion of e-commerce in China has helped Ou's business reach more coffee lovers.

"Doing online business means more than a billion people are likely to be our potential clients. If we manage to attract just 1 percent of them, we would make a great profit," Ou said.

His online shop has developed rapidly and annual sales have reached 10 million yuan (1.5 million U.S. dollars). Ou's shop serves over 100,000 customers.

Besides importing quality coffee beans, Ou has a big dream of promoting Yunnan coffee. He has a test plantation of 1,350 square meters in the southwestern Chinese province, where he tries unorthodox methods of planting coffee trees that differ radically from the traditional way. 

"We take the job seriously and make every effort to lift the quality of coffee beans in order to meet the desired standards. Take everything seriously and you will derive pleasure from doing it," Ou said.