If you’re interested in cats, tea, or starting your own business, you won’t want to miss our upcoming event featuring KitTea—the first cat café established in America! Hugely popular in Japan and across Asia, cat-themed cafés allow patrons to pet cats and sip their favorite drinks at the same time. Opened in 2015, KitTea’s mission is to connect humans and felines while serving as a relaxing refuge from the bustle and stress of the big city. In her compelling presentation, founder Courtney Hatt will discuss the inspiration behind KitTea and the trials and tribulations of turning her vision into reality.
北米で初めて猫カフェをオープンさせたCourtney Hatt がKitTea オープンまでの波乱万丈ストーリーを語ります。5年間猛烈にテック企業で働いたのち、パニック障害を経て、大好きな猫とティーをコネクトしたビジネス、猫カフェを思いつきます。カフェオープンは、たった1日の道のりではありません。猫好きはもちろんのこと、起業家の方にも興味深い内容となること必須！KitTea Cafeでは彼女のフィロソフィーを感じます。誰もやっていないことを初めて挑戦するのは本当に大変。シリコンバレーにはアントレプレナーが大勢いますが、Courtney もその一人。
Courtney has an incredible story to tell. She has been a big Japan fan for many years and has been inspired by Japanese culture which led to believing her own version of a Cat Cafe could work well in the Bay Area. As this concept hasn’t been done before in the Bay Area, and only sparsely in North America it was a multi-year project to get investment, permitting, space, and to refine her offering. Personally, she has found that being with cats has been helpful in keeping the stress of starting a groundbreaking business manageable. A unique and definable part of Courtney’s offering is that you can actually take the cats home permanently! Her business is aligned with multiple animal rescue organizations within 100 miles of the cafe, and many of the super well behaved cats you encounter are available for adoption. Let Courtney tell you herself of her journey from animal fan to a growing business where there are now multiple hour waits to get in.
After working in tech for 5 years, Courtney decided she could no longer stare at a computer screen; she wanted to bring together her two favorite things – cats and tea. The concept for KitTea was thus born in 2013 to celebrate the human and cat connection as well as saving the lives of cats in need. Courtney struggles with panic disorder and anxiety and her cats and tea are the calming force in her life, so every part of KitTea has the intention to calm and nourish its guests.
The event venue has been provided with generous support from TOTO