Armenian woman entrepreneur has the right ingredients for success

Dr Vardanush Petrossian in the Ingrediant café.

Dr Vardanush Petrossian, a medical doctor with a specialisation in nutrition, has always dreamed of running her own healthy food-focused café. Using her own savings, she opened the Ingredient Café. Now, with the support of the Women in Business Programme, funded by EU4Business,  the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and Sweden, Vardanush’s café is expanding.

The Ingredient Café is unique addition to the Yerevan food scene as it only uses healthy, all natural and locally-produced ingredients. Vardanush also replaces any added sugars with syrup from a local Armenian plant.

Although business was good, Vardanush was anxious to expand. One thing she needed was a website where she could better market her café and its delicious dishes. For this, she applied for support from EU4Business and the EBRD’s Women in Business Programme, which offers advisory services for women owned companies.

Business is booming

Thanks to a €5 000 grant, the Ingredient Café has a new, state-of-the-art website. As a result, Vardanush is welcoming more and more customers – 80 % of whom hear about the café via the website or Facebook page. She’s even had to hire 12 employees to help keep up.

With business booming, Vardanush plans to apply for further assistance from the Women in Business Programme. Since she’s a medical doctor, she has little background in management. With a €10 000 grant, she is set to start a coaching programme where a consultant will come to the café and work one-on-one with her to develop her management skills.

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