22 May 2022


I’d like to do a shout out to Billy Haoda – founder of Billy’s Coffee in Cairns, which is celebrating its 20 birthday this year.

I first met Billy before he had his own coffee business. He was working in a cafe on the Esplanade in Cairns. I would stop in for a coffee from time to time, and we always had a great chat about business, life and coffee. It was pretty clear to me that Billy was an entrepreneur, he just needed his first opportunity.

One day Billy told me that he had an idea to start a coffee stand in the busy produce market called Rustys. As it was a food business he needed to write a proposal for the council and he was having some trouble with getting it done (because a lot was riding on it). He asked me to help him, which of course I gladly did.

I wrote a simple one pager, explaining why Billy should be given this license, the kind of man he was and his commitment to making the business work. The license was approved. And Billy’s Coffee was formed.

Go forward 20 years – Billy has two thriving coffee shops, a coffee roaster, a wholesale business – and he imports 12 tonnes of coffee a year from his family connections in Papua New Guinea. All of his kids (he has lots) and his lovely wife, work in the business. And whenever I am in Cairns I go and visit Billy, he kindly refuses to take my money, but insists that I have one of his awesome coffees.

I love this story for so many reasons. I love that Billy was brave enough to ask for help all of those years ago. I love that he let his entrepreneurial nature come out. I love that he does great coffee and that he has built a wonderfully vertically integrated business. And I love that this is truly a family business in every sense of the term.

Happy 20th Birthday Billy! You are a good man and a true entrepreneur.


Join The Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Who's This Andrew Griffiths Guy?

Andrew Griffiths is Australia's #1 small business author with 12 best selling books now sold in over 60 countries. He's a writing and publishing expert, an international speaker and leading business advisor with over 20 years' experience. Andrew presents around the world and is considered an expert in entrepreneurship and an authority on building a profile. He is a thought leader through writing, publishing and speaking and is featured regularly in mainstream global media.

Find Out More About Andrew

Win one of my Bestselling Books

Every week I’m going to give away a copy of one of my bestselling books. All you need to do to go into the draw is put your details in the box below. If you win, it will appear in your mailbox. Simple as that.

Get Social

This Website is owned and operated by Andrew Griffiths Enterprises Pty Ltd as Trustee for the Andrew Griffiths Enterprises Trust

Web Design by Precedence