We love to visit the businesses of local expats that have made their entrepreneurial dreams come true. They have taken that step and become independent. It isn’t for everyone, but we celebrate those that do try and that do make it happen. We are always curious to hear from them and to understand what it takes to succeed. Recently, we had the chance to meet up with Renjana who started her own bakery in the Pijp : Sea Salt and Chocolate.
I have known Renjana for some time as our kids were at the same school. I remember her telling me back then that she was going to launch her own business. She had a vision and a plan and was going for it. The world generally stands aside for people with drive and determination and lets them get on with it. I remember the early days too and she would tell me that her and her husband Danny were run off their feet. They were doing deliveries and baking late into the night.
So it was great to catch up with her three years later in her location in the Pijp. She has a beautiful bakery and you sit in and enjoy all the great cakes and have coffee. The business has kept growing steadily every year and she now has a team to help her. It was fun to hear all about the progress Renjana has made and to try her products. They really are the best cakes I have ever eaten. So the product is amazing and the team is great. That is the foundation of any solid business. We took the opportunity to ask Renjana a few questions :
1. How hard to easy was it for you as an expat to set up a business in Amsterdam ?
It was a fairly simple process setting the business up with the Chamber of Commerce, and with Amsterdam being so international, it was quite a fun process meeting with people and spreading the word.
2. What one thing helped you move it from a starter business to a fully fledged bakery ?
I would say our success with the delivery services helped us establish our name and good will among our clients, so when we moved to a full fledged bakery, we were already known for our quality cakes which made all the difference.
3. We often hear that work needs to also be fun. Does that carry across to entrepreneurs like you that take a plan and work hard to make it happen ?
Mine is a hobby turned to work, so I love it, and still enjoy it, especially trying out new recipes and designing new menus, and special themes.
4. What one piece of advice would you offer to expats that are considering starting their own business in Amsterdam?
Start small and think big!
5. What are you plans for the next step ?
A branch in the city centre is definitely on the cards, and who knows, maybe even branching out to a different segment 😉
Sea Salt and Chocoloate
Sint Willibrordusstraat 58, 1073 VD Amsterdam
Tel – 06 41 48 97 17
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