How Much Does It Cost to Start a Coffee Business in the Philippines?

Updated: Dec 21, 2021

A typical independent cafe or coffee shop

What is it like to break free from the 9-5 grind? Well, here’s the thing: you can’t really know for sure if you don’t try. But here’s the other thing: it’s one thing to say it, and another thing to do it.

In short, it’s hard. Especially when we’re talking business, when there’s a lot of money involved. Sadly, not everyone can just whip out a wad of cash and get into business. For many of us, money is most definitely an object.You know that you want to do it, but you don’t know how, or if you even can do it.

On this post, we’re looking at a real-life cost breakdown of starting a coffee business in the Philippines to help you get started with your own.

3 Ways to Start a Coffee Business in the Philippines

If you want to start your coffee shop in the Philippines, you have at least three ways to go about it.

First, you can franchise. There’s a whole breadth of established coffee brands should your heart desire to franchise. Popular brands such as Starbucks, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Tim Hortons’, UCC, and the like are all open for franchising. Many first-time entrepreneurs are encouraged to franchise because deployment is typically easy and low-stress. Plus, the business model is already established. However, the cost is anywhere from 6 to 12 million pesos, a sizable investment that has no guarantees ROI-wise. More importantly, there’s little flexibility on the concept and innovation.

Second, and perhaps the least popular in our list, is buying an existing coffee shop. You’d be surprised that there are entrepreneurs who actually buy established and well-performing coffee shops. Who can blame them? It’s the safer, much easier route. There are a handful of great reasons why you’d want to do this, chief among them is the opportunity to deliver specialty and good-quality coffee. However, it’s hard to find a very profitable business that is out for sale. What’s more, you’ll be bound to the existing branding, vision, and design and remodeling it will likely come out to be even more expensive than simply starting your own.

Finally, there’s the option of building a coffee brand from the ground-up. This offers aspiring café-preneurs to build something truly their own—from branding, culture, business model, food menu, and everything else.  Starting your own coffee shop gives you free hand and flexibility on business model, brand, design, language, and more. Because there’s no pre-existing branding to deal with, you’re free to be original, market on a specific concept, and place good focus on delivering great coffee. Of course, it’s worth noting that all these will be time-consuming and difficult to execute, especially for entrepreneurs without much experience in the food and beverage experience.

On this post, we’ll be using the third option as example. How much money is required for you to build a coffee shop in the Philippines?

Cost Breakdown: Starting a Coffee Business in the Philippines

Let’s get one thing straight: creating your own coffee shop will set you back money-wise. Be prepared to shell out a considerable sum. Without any further ado, here’s our rough cost breakdown of how much it costs to start a coffee business in the Philippines.

Small Cafe with No Kitchen


Location - central business district

Food - reheating only

Staff* - 4