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Let There be Peace and Let it Begin with Tea

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”
– Leo Tolstoy

February 2009 – Samovar, along with the rest of the western world, witnessed a host of momentous events at the close of 2008 and beginning of 2009. The near collapse of the capitalist system, global economic woes, fits and starts of major business reforms, an exciting sea change in American leadership, the list goes on. Rooting out the source of our current challenges enlightened us to our world’s duality: both our problems and solutions arise from the same source. Issues of integrity in business matters that previously hastened our downfall must now guide our destiny.

Aligning business practices to power social change is a principle Samovar’s been dialing in since Day One. And we’ll continue to do it as we have, that is unconventionally, mindfully, and from the inside out. Which is why we’re inspired by the observation of Tolstoy, agreeing that effective social change flows from individual choices. By satisfying needs, creating value and reconnecting people to the root of enjoying life, we discovered a warm cup of tea actually could transform the entire world.

Soundness, presence, clarity…  the uncertainty of our times only increases the need for reflection, relaxation and renewal. Visit our lounges and try our teas and you’ll see that Samovar is taking the business of mankind’s happiness and contentment seriously. In doing so, we’re establishing new standards for success in the business world’s attitude toward health, wellness, and human development.
Who knew we could enjoy so much success and have this much fun showing the way for others to relax and find their transformation?

Create Peace Drink Tea. Preserving the simplicity and integrity of the Tea Tradition makes Samovar a clearing for timeless values leading to unbounded inner growth joy in the journey.

Let there be Peace on Earth and let it begin with Tea.

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Jesse Jacobs, Owner of Samovar Tea Lounge: “SF Business Times Entrepreneur of the Month”

Friday, September 12, 2008sf_business_times
Entrepreneur profile
Jesse Jacobs
Founder and CEO, Samovar Tea Lounge

HQ: San Francisco.
2007 revenue: $1.8 million.
Number of employees: 40.
Year founded: 2001.
Source of startup capital: $300,000 in loans from the SBA, family and friends.

Background: Born in Brookline, Mass., raised in a commune and graduated with a bachelor’s in international relations from University of Massachusetts-Amherst. Taught English in Denmark and Japan. Founded a web startup in Boston before driving to California for the tech boom. After the dot-com bust in 2001, founded Samovar.

Age: 37.
Residence: San Francisco.

Web site: www.samovartea.com.
What it does: Tea shop

Big Picture

Reason for starting business: I wanted to create peace. Tea is the perfect vehicle for creating peace.

Most difficult part of decision: Risking everything — money, family, friends and free time.

Biggest plus of ownership: Doing exactly what you love. Watching an idea turn into physical reality.

Biggest drawback: There is no “clocking out” and going home for the weekend. Ever.

Biggest misconception: Getting rich quick and defining your own schedule.

Biggest business strength: Our model is a tea experience to make people feel good, like going to China or visiting a spa.

Biggest business weakness: Trying to be a sustainable business in San Francisco is really expensive.

Biggest risk: Putting more money and time into the business. We finally turned a profit last year.

Biggest mistake: We were undercapitalized and didn’t do things professionally at the start.

Smartest move: Hiring staff looking to grow with the company and having “open-book” accounting, where the dishwashers knew the gross profit and understood how breaking a dish impacted the bottom line.

Biggest worry: Growing too fast, and not delivering the same Samovar experience, mission and culture.

Top source of inspiration: Dalai Lama.

Media Contact:
Jesse Cutler, Samovar: (415) 655-3431 / [email protected]