THUNDER BAY – BUSINESS – On August 18, 2015, Founder of Steeped Tea, Tonia Jahshan, will be showcasing her Dragon approved company during a fun and tasty 2 hour presentation at the Airlane Hotel.
At 7:00PM, Tonia who is featured in Forbes magazine’s article “6-entrepreneurial-women-to-watch” will take the stage and unveil new teas and trendy accessories from the company’s fall and holiday collection. The audience will hear Tonia’s story of how she build her business to be the 17th fastest growing company in Canada, that currently employs 54 people in a 30,000 square-foot facility, and has over 7500 consultants in Canada and the U.S.
Tonia chose Thunder Bay as one of 9 stops on her North American tea tour because of the tremendous growth and interest in the area.
Steeped Tea operates by the Direct Sales model, like Tupperware, only yummier!
Tea consultants hold “tea parties” for potential clients to sample products and to buy directly.
From the Basement to Dragon’s Den
The company started in Tonia’s basement then quickly expanded when, Dragon’s Den investor’s David Chilton and Jim Treliving, invested in Steeped Tea on an episode of their hit t.v. show. Owners, husband and wife duo, Tonia and Hatem Jahshan, appeared on Dragons’ Den and landed a $125,000-for-10-per-cent-of-their-company deal from both Chilton and Treliving.
“Investing in Steeped Tea is one of the sharpest moves of my entire career,” says Chilton, a financial planner and author.
“I believe in the people first and then the product,” states Treliving, who is best known for co-founding Boston Pizza. “They were very well versed in what their company could do… they were passionate and focused, and had everything but some cash.”What happened behind the scenes after the episode aired was the “due diligence” stage, where Chilton’s and Treliving’s teams went through their business plan, model and finances to make sure everything the Jahshan said in their pitch was true.
Then came the product testing.
“We got all kinds of samples and brought together all the tea people in our lives and try it,” Chilton said. “All across the board, they said, ‘These are the best blends we’ve had…’ And I thought more than anything, it was the tea that got me excited.”
Chilton even signed his daughter up as a consultant to see what the training was like. It also passed his test.
“It was very much a reflection of Tonia, very authentic,” he said.
Both Chilton and Treliving say they’re in for the long haul with Steeped Tea.
The Thunder Bay tea tour is completely free to attend and all tea lovers are welcome to attend!