Renegade Tea Estate
129 084 € (174%)
of 74 000 - 129 093 € goal funded
37 € minimum investment
Dear member of the Renegade Community!
We are happy that you have decided to become one of the owners of Renegade Tea Estate. Please continue to register the shares that you have marked as your interest previously. We remind you that the calculation of the price for the shares goes like this:
- the first 1-euro share is for 5 Euros for everyone.
- the rest of the shares are 37 Euros per one 1-Euro share.
So if you would like to get 15 shares for example, then the calculation is 1x5 Euros + 14x 37 Euros = 523 Euros.
If you would like to then you can go through the plans and financials once more on this page.
Hannes, Kristiina, Miina, Hanna, Priit, Tomas, Mario
Problem & Solution
There is certainly place under the sun for a company selling high-quality organic Georgian tea, but creating just another tea company has never been our dream. What Renegade Tea Estate is about is the most personal tea experience in the world.
Reality shows that at our core, people are tribal and we look for meaningful relationships and personal connection, especially, if we talk about something as personal as our food. We like to buy bread from the nearby family bakery, we like to get our vegetables from the same friendly farmer on the Sunday farmers market. We want to eat/drink healthy and natural. We also pay more and more attention to the quality, sustainability and ethical production principles.
Unfortunately, apart from a few exceptions the tea business at large is one of the least transparent in the food sector. It is often characterized by abusive business practices, complex supply routes and numerous middlemen, selling and promoting the average quality mass market tea as special and exclusive.
When we learned about the hundreds of abandoned tea plantations in Georgia and found out about the authenticity gap in the tea market, we saw an opportunity for a different approach.
Renegade Tea Estate is a tea farm, growing and producing organic Georgian tea, but we are also a community farm, theme park and educational centre. We sell tea, but we mainly offer experiences, emotions and belonging.
- We grow tea as a service rather than selling it as a product. We want most of our customers to be involved in their tea's journey, even before it's harvested from the field.
- We want people to experience the farm life as we do - is it just a short walk in the plantation, half a day in the factory or maybe a weekend workshop to make their own tea.
Our product is the EXPERIENCE of having your tea grown for you.
When conventional tea companies are looking for customers to whom to sell their tea to, then we are looking for people to whom to grow the tea. Value is not generated only through the product (tea), but through personal relationship between the customer, farm and farmer - making Renegade Tea Estate feel like it's your own tea farm.
What makes it your own tea farm?
- you see behind the curtains - every season is a journey and an act on its own - you can always follow the back-story (and your tea growing) via social media;
- every bag of tea is personal – you always know from which exact field the tea has come from, how and by whom it has been produced;
- you can be a farmer too - instead of buying tea, you can rent a garden – tea from your very own garden with your name on it;
- real people, real interactions - the same people you see making tea on the pictures and stories on social media, are the ones answering your email and sending your tea;
- farm-life experiences and educational services - a tour at the plantation, a weekend workshop at the factory or a tea-tasting night at your office.
It's not our tea that we sell to you, it's your tea we are growing for you!
Even if we are not selling tea per se, the product matters a lot as well. If the tea is not high-quality or with intriguing flavors, then there is also no story people would like to be part of. „My own tea farm“ is relevant only as long as we cherish the tea we get from „our farm“.
Georgia is fortunately a unique terroir to produce organic high-quality artisan teas where the priority is on the quality and taste, not the price.
Our production philosophy is based on the understanding that people have different tastes and we want to be able to grow tea for different people. So, each season we make at least 15 different teas across all types (green, black, oolong, white), ranging from mild to edgy.
Despite our limited experience as tea makers, our teas have already been acknowledged by tea professionals around the world.
In 2018-2020 we have grown our annual revenue potential from 0 to 150-170'000 EUR per year with almost no marketing spending. We have gained traction by exceeding the expectations - with our story, with our teas and with the overall experiences we provide - all of which helps to generate organic growth. But this might not be enough in long-term.
We see strong potential in the "Your own tea farm" concept that is unique for Renegade Tea Estate. Key part of this concept is actively inviting our customers to visit us, to experience the tea farming and production first hand. But even more, we see our Estates as the most efficient long-term marketing tool. Our plan is to position Renegade Tea Estate also as a tourist attraction and target people from our key markets who are visiting Georgia.
This gives us the possibility to already start the customer journey with a personal contact and it is also a financially feasible marketing concept:
- incoming tourists as a target group are relatively easy and cost efficient to reach;
- very few people in Europe have visited a tea farm and ours is the most easily accessible from most European countries;
- memorable experiences, stories and pictures shared by the visitors create word of mouth marketing way beyond our own financial means;
- a person who has been on the farm or even made their very own tea is much more likely to call Renegade Tea Estate "my own tea farm".
Based on the 2019 Georgian tourism figures, if just 2% of the tourists from EU countries would visit our farm and if 20% of those who visit would make an online order after that, then in 2021-2023 we would sell all our production each year.
How we make money
Our typical customer is a regular tea drinker in Northern/Central Europe and the USA, who prioritizes ecological/economical sustainability and transparency when choosing products and brands. Someone who is not afraid to differ and to whom the price is not the first factor when making the purchase.
Due to the limited production volumes, we have done almost no end-user marketing, but as our team is mostly from Estonia, our story has drawn significant interest from different local media channels which has helped to build brand awareness and it reflects in the 2020 market split.
As we build up our customer base, we prioritize target markets looking at three main dimensions:
- social/cultural - tea culture, English language skills, e-commerce adoption, receptiveness to story marketing:
- consumer habits - what teas people buy, sustainability as a force behind purchasing decisions;
- geographical - tourism potential for Georgia.
Our top 10 priority markets in 2021-2022 (alphabetically):
Traction & Accomplishments
At the end of our third season most of the potentially fatal risks have been successfully hedged and we are mid-way of implementing our full value chain. By now, we can conclude that the overall condition of plantations is satisfactory and our teas have been validated by experts, even though we have still very limited experience in tea making.
Our sales model has also proven functional. Repeating customer share in sales is continuously growing and we have already around 150 members in our farmers community who have made a long-term commitment by renting their own tea garden in our farm. During the last offering in spring 2020, all available 75 gardens were acquired in 3 weeks by customers from 13 countries.
The biggest challenge we face is still the low productivity of the regenerating plantations that strains the cash flow and prevents our ability to optimally react to market opportunities.
As of today, there are no outside loans or investors. The project has been financed by founders and a community of customers.
How We’re Different
We are not aware of any other tea farm, where you can follow and be part of your tea journey from the moment that new shoots start to grow on the field until they reach your cup. This is our vision – to offer the most personal tea experience.
Uses of Funds & Timeline
All funds gathered in the framework of the crowdfunding project will be used to complete the following investments program at the Renegade Tea Estate during 2021-2022:
First priority investments (~72'000 EUR, to be completed by August 2021) :
- Service buildings at Renegade and Mandikori Estates.
- Additional processing/packaging equipment for the factory to keep up with growth in volumes.
- Necessary final works at the factory, official HACCP certification.
Second priority investments (~120'000 EUR, to be completed by March 2022):
- A visitor centre and demonstration factory next to Rioni Estate plantation.
- Infrastructure at Rioni Estate to welcome tourists - walkways and resting areas.
- Tea shop and tasting room in Kutaisi.
Third priority investments ( In case we gather more funds than 200'000 EUR):
- Tea seed oil processing and bottling equipment (~20'000 EUR).
- Implementation of more sustainable packaging solutions (metal tins, compostable packages) from 2021 - 2022, instead of originally planned 2023-2024 timeframe. (~40'000 EUR, including one-time costs and more working capital required before the season due to the higher cost of new packages).
Obligations to Investors, Profit Distribution
The existing share capital of the company is 27'000 EUR and in the framework of the crowdfunding project we plan to increase the share capital by 4200-6000 EUR, offering 13,46-18,18% of the company to new investors.
Based on the existing assets and financials of the company, the business model and the projections for 2021-2024, we have calculated the company pre-campaign valuation at 1'215'000 EUR. With the public crowdfunding offering, we plan to sell each new 1 EUR nominal share unit with the price of 45 EUR.
We have decided to offer shares to our Renegade Community at more favorable conditions:
- Each Community member has a right to purchase one 1 EUR share unit with the price of 5 EUR (total maximum of 229 token share units are offered, based on the latest number of members).
- The remaining share units (the amount was specified before the campaign by the total interest of the community) will be offered with the price of 37 EUR per 1 EUR share unit (17,8% discount from the standard price).
*Renegade Community members are everybody who have previously adopted "a private tea garden" or "a named tea bush" (total of 229 persons as of Nov 2020).
Profit opportunities for the shareholders:
1) All new shareholders participating in the crowdfunding project will have the option to sell back their shares at the end of 2024, giving a clear exit possibility with known returns. Buyback price for 1 EUR nominal share will be 70 EUR.
2) We plan to start dividend payments in 2024 (for 2023 results). Minimum 25% of the consolidated yearly net profit will be paid out as dividends. Based on the latest projections and estimated company valuation "post-campaign", we estimate 3% dividend yield in 2024 and close to 5% in 2025 (based on the share unit price of 45 EUR).
3) In cooperation with the crowdfunding platform, we aim to provide secondary market opportunities for our shareholders.
Additional perks for investors:
Investment of EUR 500 or more.
- A free Renegade Collection 2021 (delivered in November 2021).
Investment of EUR 1000 or more.
- A free Renegade Collection 2021 (delivered in November 2021).
- 10% discount from all products and services for an indefinite time.
- 2 Renegade Tea Estate artisan clay cups.
Investment of EUR 5000 or more.
- 100 m2 personal tea garden with free tea supply every year until 2043 (ca 2 kg of tea per year once the plantations have matured, approximately from 2024).
- 15% discount from all products and services for an indefinite time.
- 4 Renegade Tea Estate artisan clay cups.
All perks will remain and apply only to the original investors participating in the crowdfunding campaign. In case the shares will be sold fully or in part, the perks still apply to the original investor and will not be transferred together with the shares.
Risks and Mitigation
- Lower than expected productivity increase of the plantations in 2021-22 would seriously influence the liquidity situation and stability of the company.
- The long-term effects of Covid-19 on agritourism are unknown and could require the revision of the planned marketing strategy and business model as a whole.
- The change of the political landscape in Georgia can have a destabilizing effect on the local business environment.
- The unpopularity of agriculture among young people and the general lack of young workforce in our area can complicate the operations and increase costs.
- Climate change can have a critical long-term effect on plant health and productivity.
- Our ability to manage growth and preserve a personal approach to each customer.
- Our ability to find outside financing is critical in the next growth and development phase.
The following activities form the key pillars of a strategy to mitigate the risks:
- We use the best available CRM tools and strengthen our internal procedures to create the right framework for providing the most personalized experiences possible. We control the speed of growth to make sure that we don't sacrifice the quality.
- We will actively look for new financial investors to strengthen the balance sheet.
- We ensure that we provide value to the local communities and build a positive image as an employer.
- Effects of climate change can be partly remedied with irrigation and shading practices.
- We work on our virtual storytelling capabilities to use it as an alternative way to keep customers immersed in our story, even if they are physically unable to visit us.