Something that “Big” Coffee & “Hip” Coffee Don’t Have: The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf heads into 2017 stronger than ever

Not many people know that The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is one of the world’s first and largest privately held specialty coffee and tea retailers. Founded in Southern California, the iconic Los Angeles brand has quietly grown to over 1,100 locations in 29 countries. Serving more than 110 million coffee, tea, and Ice Blended® beverages each year, its success just keeps building. 

Within a market that seems to produce more and more competition each day, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has proven that it understands its industry better and is able to deliver on quality and consistency with each cup. Furthermore, this mid-size specialty coffee and tea chain sits comfortably between “big” coffee and “hip” coffee, offering something that both have yet to deliver on: quality without the attitude.

GAME CHANGERS. One unique aspect of the brand’s heritage is that it only selects the top 1 percent of Arabica beans from the world’s best growing regions. This dedication to quality is led by the company’s coffee master, Jay Isais, who is known throughout the coffee world for upholding the highest standards. “Long before there were certifications for doing the right thing, we developed direct relationships with farmers and paid them a premium for quality,” Isais says.

ROASTERS. The SoCal-based brand’s coffee and tea blends are handmade and developed at its state-of-the-art facility in Camarillo, California—giving the company total control for ultimate precision. Roasting in small batches allows The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf to achieve the best roast for each specific origin and to capture the unique characteristics of the bean. Or in other words, the brand makes coffee as delicious as it can be. 

INNOVATORS. In 1987, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf founded the frozen coffee craze by introducing The Original Ice Blended® drink. Then in 1998, the brand debuted its uniquely delicious Chai Tea Latte—an exclusive, handcrafted beverage made with premium tea and proprietary ingredients. Most recently, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf was the first of its kind to offer nitro cold brew in multiple locations within the greater Los Angeles area. 

FRANCHISOR. Although it strays away from granting franchises for individual stores, broker’s partnerships, or sub-franchise rights, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf uses an area developer model whereby it grants franchises for multi-unit, designated markets. 

What the company seeks in area developers are the financial and operational abilities to develop and operate their stores within a given market. The brand believes that the number of stores to be opened in a particular market should be commensurate with the marketplace, competition, population, and relevant demographics. Moreover, it is important that franchisees of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf have the ability to achieve brand recognition and customer loyalty as a function of significant market presence. Along with economies of scale, this company believes this is critical for success in the specialty coffee and tea retail sector and for the success of their franchisees. For these reasons, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf works with franchisees who can deliver the ability to source ‘A’ locations through their local networks and communities; previous multi-unit operating experience, preferably in the quick-service restaurant industry; in-market ownership; and significant capitalization and net worth in order to obtain a leading market position within the first five years of operation.

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf opened its first domestic franchise location in Las Vegas in 2001. Since then, the brand has partnered with dozens of multi-unit operators who opened markets across the country. Now, more than ever, unique opportunities to franchise with The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf are available. 

For more information about franchising opportunities with The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, visit