Desert Drinks & Exotics: Past, Present, and Future.
Desert Drinks & Exotics was originally started as a hobby, after a close friend had returned from Japan sporting some Fanta flavors that were around at the time. We loved the idea of being able to try drinks from around the world, while also learning more about popular flavors and taste from different cultures. As we continued to try new products we got more eager to expand our palette. After a few months of learning about drinks from other countries, and sharing them with our friends and families, Michael came to me with the idea of starting an Instagram page dedicated to selling exotic and hard to find soda, and delivering within the Phoenix area. On February 24, 2019 Desert Drinks and Exotics was officially created.
For about 5 months Desert Drinks and Exotics focused on building it’s name and reputation by launching a website that opened up shipping to all 50 states, spending hours on the road delivering soda within the valley, and attending events as a vendor. We were incredibly lucky to be supported by our friends and the Phoenix community from the beginning, and we were starting to gain some traction, meaning we could grow even more. The demand was high and we were starting to get tight on space, with cases of soda completely filling a spare room and lining the walls of our living room. The wear and tear on our vehicle at the time was tremendous, with an average of 6 hours spent everyday just driving out orders. This is when the both of us made the decision to start saving money so we could open a storefront.
After some searching, on July 29th 2019 we signed our lease to our first storefront. We focused for about a month on filling it with furniture and product, which was no small task as a two person team. We worked tirelessly with our suppliers to source new products at a reasonable price to make sure we were prepared to serve customers. Finally, on September 1st 2019 Desert Drinks & Exotics opened it’s doors for the very first time. In the 7 months we have been open we have served almost 5,000 customers in our storefront alone, and our sales continue to increase every day.
As for our future goals it is our hope that we can hire an employee within the next year to help us grow and better serve our customers. We are also working daily on creating new business relationships with companies within Arizona and around the US, in hopes of future expansion. When the time comes we plan to move into a larger retail space, or potentially even expand to two locations in the valley. Pricing is another key area we are constantly working on improving, and by creating new business relationships and growing our business’ working capital, we are constantly finding areas to cut costs to bring lower prices to our customers.
We never imagined to have this level of success and support from the community in just a year. Desert Drinks and Exotics is your store; our customers keep the fridges running, keep the lights on, and are the reason we get up every day to sell soda and snacks. We have only our customers to thank for this opportunity to dream big. Thank you for supporting small, Desert Drinks and Exotics is excited to grow with you.