Ann tees up the retailer market

xperience: Ann Davies with a flowering tea bloom; she is now bidding for high street success.
xperience: Ann Davies with a flowering tea bloom; she is now bidding for high street success.
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An online tea retailer who sells exotic teas and teapots direct to consumers, is seeking to repeat its success, this time with high street retailers.

The Doncaster-based Tea Experience is run by Ann Davis, a former Royal Mail human resources manager who got the inspiration for the business after husband Paul bought her a traditional Yixing ‘purple sand’ China teapot.

After successfully selling teapots and then teas online, she has now launched a range of artisan Flowering Tea Blooms in pouches, aimed at the independent retail market.

Exotic teas available in the pouches include Red Aramanth, Jasmine Arch, Jasmine Fairy, Flying Snow, Sweet Osmanthus and Dragon’s Eye, as well as a mixed selection pouch of the last four teas.

Sheffield Hallam University’s creative design agency, Design Futures, developed the packaging for The Tea Experience’s new venture, as well as a retail display for use in stores.

Ann Davis said: “We have seen good growth online since our launch and recognise that there is a place for our speciality loose teas in the retail market, particularly within the independent sector, where high quality and differentiation is paramount.

“We are already in talks with independent retailers who are interested in our new range, so feel confident that they will be well received.”

Ann Davis launched her business to give herself the work and lifestyle balance she wanted, while recovering from breast cancer a few years ago.

She began selling teapots online after friends started asking her where they could get them and then started importing exotic loose tea from the Far East and Germany, as well as dealing with specialist tea importers and wholesalers in the UK.