Amanda-Jane Thomas and Shanita Nicholas are two black female entrepreneurs who have become friends when they met each other in law school. Shanita Nicholas was born in Germany into a military family. She shifted to the US at the age of 6. On the other hand, Amanda-Jane Thomas is a second-generation Caribbean American and Brooklynite.
After practicing law together in the same law firm, they both shifted to Los Angeles and eventually settled in Inglewood. That’s when their entrepreneurial journey started, and they both became business partners. Bot the friends have started Sip & Sonder coffee house in 2017. The reason behind the launch of their own business is that Shanita wants to pursue the goal to offer the startup community access to business and networks while drinking coffee.
On the other hand, Amanda-Jane Thomas discovered that there weren’t many coffee shops in Brooklyn in the ‘80s and ‘90s, and her connections with the ones that she did visit were almost as an outsider. During her visit to the coffee shop, she never felt truly at home. So they both have the reason to start a new business which leads them to open “Sip & Sonder”.
Sip & Sonder, is a fully operational coffee house with 13 staff members. It invites customers to “Be you with us” and defines itself as a “coffee house and roastery where coffee, community, and culture truly connect.”
The main purpose of their business is to bring together and support Black entrepreneurs and to source coffee directly from destinations such as Ethiopia, Burundi, Colombia, Rwanda, and Papua New Guinea, and implement the global Diaspora connection that coffee creates through their space and product.
Furthermore, Nicholas and Thomas disclosed they had just made their first coffee delivery across the world for the 2020 holiday season, the business’ first big push when the Guild House Hotel owner got in touch about becoming their coffee supplier.