Avec de 1 000 clients par jour, Anticafé impose son modèle novateur entre café et coworking.

I came to France
seven years ago to study, and I thought: “nice country, nice food, I will never do business here.” Nevertheless, two years later, I did it. I’m Ukrainian, actually, I used to work from coffee-shops all of the times,
I did it a lot in Ukraine. in Russia and in the USA
almost everywhere I lived until I came to France. We looked for a place
to work on a study project, we were, I think, five, and the only place we could go
was in fact a McDonald’s because the local coffee-shops
didn’t let us in. Starbucks was small and too noisy, McDonald’s was the only place
were we could have… A small table, a bit of Wi-Fi
and we weren’t kicked out. It marked and startled me
that it was the only place where I could make a little project. And I thought: “I’m going to do something
that’s missing, something that I personally miss”, hoping that I wouldn’t be the only person who would like to benefit
from this kind of service. We took the best
of three worlds we liked. The coffee-shop, the co-working and house-like atmosphere. For the coffee-shop part,
we took the accessibility, the fact that it’s open for everyone,
that there are no barriers, and that everyone could come in,
that everyone is welcomed in. I think that coffee is unifying,
and that the good vibes here in this place, in the Anticafé have something to do with it. For the co-working part,
we took the working possibility, a wider space, the equipment needed to work with, and we have, I would say, spiced it up
with a warm house-like atmosphere, with people’s discussions. The customers who come here are,
consequently, our hosts, our guests, our housemates, actually. The customers only pay the time
they spend here, nothing more, they don’t pay neither for coffee for food. Finding the first place was really hellish. My budget was really limited. I think it took me six months, and I viewed at least sixty places. But at some point,
I found a place I liked a lot, it was an art gallery, on Quincampoix Street. Me and my friends,
we really knocked it up, but in ten days,
we opened the first Anticafé. The first reactions
to the concept were divided: half of the people liked it a lot, and the other half
didn’t believe in it at all. The first months, it was quite hard. We opened in April,
and there were a few clients a day. I was the only one to work at first,
and didn’t even know how to make coffee, so it was on the opening day that my designer taught me
how to use the coffee machines. I spent, I think,
seventy days without taking a break, without sleeping a wink for many nights, and I was exhausted like never before. Actually, it started to work
in October/November, so around five or six months later. Then I started
to have my first employees when I started to have
a turnover inflow dedicated to it. The following year, 2014,
was a very effective year for us, we made three other openings in six months: in March, June and October. We add three other coffee-shops,
so we had four. I think that the first step
was to attract the early adopters. I think, I hope, it’s almost over. The customer base increased a lot these days. We had one location, now we have nine,
in addition to several imitators, so we have about 15. We will have almost a
thousand customers a day, in theory, on average, as of January. Our goal is to be the leader
of this market in Europe. To do that, we’ve set a goal:
to open 50 shops from now to the end of 2020 in the busiest cities of Europe.

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