Margaret Nyamumbo is a Kenyan businesswoman and the founder of Kahawa 1893 Coffee. Her coffee brand became the first Black-owned coffee brand to be sold at Trader Joe’s, a leading grocery retailer in the United States, in 2021. It first appeared at over 200 Trader Joe’s locations throughout California.
“Being the first Black woman-owned coffee brand to be sold in Trader Joe’s is not only an exciting time for me but also signifies a commitment to showcasing the amazing diversity in the marketplace by Black-owned brands,” Nyamumbo said. “I am thrilled to share the rich and aromatic flavours of Kahawa 1893, a true Kenyan coffee with consumers while supporting the female African coffee farmers who are an integral part of this incredible journey.”
In 2023, her coffee brand is luring American business magnates. She just appeared on Shark Tank to trade stock in her company for cash. She was looking for $350,000 in finance for 5% of her company. The value of Kahawa 1893 is estimated to be $4.3 million.
Following her pitch, Shark Tank investors were lining up to invest in Kahawa 1893 Coffee. Emma Grede offered $350,000 for a 12.5 percent share, while Robert Herjavec offered to collaborate for a 12.5 percent stake.
Mark Cuban and Lori Greiner both offered the Kenyan entrepreneur a 12.5 percent stake in their companies. After hearing all of the Sharks’ bids, she chose Grede after Grede offered an increased offer of $350,000 for an 8% stake.
Nyamumbo’s coffee is farmed in Kenya and freshly roasted in San Francisco. Kenyan, Peaberry, Serengeti, Ethiopian, Safar, 1893 Espresso, decaf, and single-serve mixes are among the coffee blends available from the company.
Nyamumbo is originally from Kenya and came to the United States to pursue college. She earned her MBA from Harvard Business School and went on to work as an investment banker on Wall Street. She left her job on Wall Street in 2017 to start Kahawa 1893 Coffee.
She grew up on coffee estates in Kenya and understands how coffee is made. In an interview, she stated that she got into coffee production because she wanted to share coffee with the world while simultaneously closing the racial and gender divide in the coffee sector.
Nyamumbo went on to say that in her home nation of Kenya, women perform more than 90% of the labor in the coffee industry yet are underpaid. “I founded Kahawa 1893 to make sure the women were visible and get a fair share for their outsized contributions to coffee,” she said.
Nyawumbo strategically chose Kahawa 1893 as a brand name to celebrate the beauty of African coffees and Black excellence. Kahawa means coffee in Swahili and 1893 is the year that coffee returned to Africa, according to her company’s website.