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Episode 13 with David McKernan, Founder of Java Republic

10th November, 2023

We are delighted to bring you the thirteenth episode of the podcast series 'Everyday Business with David McKernan, Founder of Java Republic.

Listen to the latest episode on:

This podcast brings you insightful conversation between Aidan Donnelly and entrepreneurs and business owners/management with their own unique story to tell. A new episode of the series will be released biweekly. You can listen to 'Everyday Business with Aidan Donnelly' via any of your usual podcast providers.

About David McKernan

David McKernan joined Bewley’s straight out of school in 1987 as a sales rep. Through a combination of hard work and an equally hard neck, he worked his way up to the role of Sales and Marketing manager. In 1997, David convinced Bewley’s to make a radical experiment in espresso-based beverages - launching the Caffè La Scala brand.

In early 1998, David started to research coffee roasting techniques – to try and further improve the quality, experience and flavour he had achieved with Caffè La Scala. In September 1998 he left Cambell Bewley Group to work full-time on this ambition. One hard and impoverished year later, Java Republic Roasting Company sold their first case of hand roasted coffee.

The first five years saw huge growth in volume and distribution, and by 2005 Java Republic entered the retail market with a selection of coffees. The foodservice business also saw new product development in speciality teas and premium hot chocolate.

To accommodate this growth, and to realise a vision first sketched in 1998, David then commissioned designs for a bespoke facility with a fourfold increase in capacity. It opened in 2008.

In 2019, he sold a majority stake in the company to Spanish coffee company Cafento, but remains in a non-executive role and brand ambassador.

Since then, he has set up BiaVest - Ireland’s only dedicated food investment vehicle, which is committed to investing in high quality food brands.


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