A young black woman who is determined to beat all the odds to succeed in business has turned to Crowd Funding for support for her nostalgic drinks brand.
Thornton Heath native Aisha Jade founded Carisips – a spiced drinks range in 2019 and became a Prince’s Trust launched business in 2020.
Carisips drinks have served thousands of customers at markets across London including in Brixton and Surrey Street and now Aisha is aiming to raise £25,000 to outsource production to enable the business to gain distribution, meet demand and make products.
She said: “The amount of food and drink businesses that manage to secure funding from banks is under 11 per cent, woman owned businesses are far less and then for black woman owned businesses, it’s basically non-existent.
“This is the same for funding from angel investors and venture capitalists, it’s an elitist world. This reality would deter some people, but I’ve got an amazing concept, these statistics make me more determined to succeed and I will.”
At 20 Aisha (pictured left with Reggae Reggae sauce entrepreneur Levi Roots) travelled alone to cities such as Paris, New York and Toronto to explore Caribbean food. She realised how other cultures used the same ingredients for example sorrel is called hibiscus in Europe and Karkade in Egypt, Zobo in Nigeria and Agua De Jamaica in Mexico. It has many names.
She said: “The flavours remind people of their childhoods and holidays they’ve been on – Carisips is a nostalgic drinking experience.”
Carisips arouses happy memories through exotic flavours available to people who share a connection with the flavours – sorrel, ginger and tamarind.
Aisha added: “Imagine sitting on a beach in Jamaica, drinking an ice-cold tamarind juice but you’re in England and it’s cold. My drinks transport people to these places.” .
Any amount over £1 can be pledged to Carisips through www.crowdfunder.co.uk/carisips
Rewards for donations range from a personalised thank you email – £5, any 500ml drink of your choice – £15, drinks gift set – £34 and an invitation to the official launch event – £150.