Franchised stores will enable the Australian-inspired coffee chain to scale its 12-store London network
Urban Baristas’ outlet in Wapping, London | Photo credit: Urban Baristas
UK-based Urban Baristas has signed its first franchise agreement as part of plans to open 30 new stores across the next three years.
Urban Baristas launched with a North London kiosk before opening its first store in Wapping, London, the following year. The Australian-inspired coffee chain currently operates 12 outlets across the UK capital, with its roastery supplying its direct-to-consumer and wholesale channels.
The coffee chain said its first franchise agreement, signed with entrepreneur Manny Singh in December 2023, marks a significant milestone as it seeks to expand to new London neighbourhoods. Singh is a franchise industry veteran, working as a franchisee with Anytime Fitness for the last 10 years.
“Having been a franchisee myself, I am dedicated to ensuring that our franchisees succeed and work together to bring epic coffee to the UK. This moment marks an exciting chapter in Urban Baristas' journey as we extend our commitment to delivering unparalleled coffee experiences,” said Huw Wardrope, CEO, Urban Baristas.
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London has a flourishing specialty coffee scene with a growing number of coffee groups currently seeking to scale at pace.
In September 2022 WatchHouse began a crowdfunding campaign to scale its London footprint and facilitate a launch in the US. The boutique coffee group now operates 16 stores across London and is set to open its first international store on New York’s 5th Avenue this month.
In March 2023 Grind completed its a £15m ($17.1m) investment round to open further high street outlets and scale its UK retail distribution.
Additionally, coffee social enterprise Redemption Roasters recently commenced equity crowdfunding campaign to expand its 10-store retail footprint and scale its e-commerce channel.
World Coffee Portal research forecasts the total UK branded coffee shop market will exceed 11,600 outlets by January 2028.