Defining the Soul

Java House

How do we expand without losing our essence?

In 2012, Nairobi Java House commissioned us to help them answer this question. The coffee house that brought coffee culture to Kenya had received investment from the pan-African private equity specialists ECP, and were looking to grow beyond their 13 branches, fast.

The desired outcome was a crystallised method on how to successfully package and replicate Java’s core elements, remaining true to the brand.

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Immersing in the Java experience

Knowing how to successfully move the brand forward necessitated brand introspection.

Our first exercise was therefore the meticulous planning and execution of an exhaustive evaluation concerning the current brand assets and services.

We visited all 13 branches, assessing the grand, minute and in-between details of the brand’s: identity, communications, ambience, service and menu. It was also critical to get a thorough understanding of the brand’s audience; who did it appeal to and why?

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Enhancing the guest experience

We ascertained that Java was one of the first inclusive brands in the region. It provides a space where work, leisure and family time are experienced intersect.

This third space experience made guests feel comfortable and gave them additional value that was synonymous to the brand, an essential part of its success and charm. We explored these individual elements to identify opportunities around enhancing them for the guest.

modern day necessities

The brand audit concluded with a detailed report entailing the consistencies, inconsistencies and opportunities identified around Java’s brand and its experience.

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Taking Java into the future

Based on findings and opportunities identified in the brand audit, we put together a brand strategy for Nairobi Java House.

Serving as a guiding compass for the brand, it contained the central unifying idea around which Java was built and to be grown. All behaviours, actions and communications would be guided by the strategy to ensure that they are aligned to the brand’s vision.

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A flexible strategy that paved the way for unrestricted and accelerated growth.

Crystallised brand attributes that set the brand standard and ensured consistency as the brand grew.