The new gourmet coffee shop on wheels concept made its Chico, Calif., debut this month when Tom and Lisa Nitschman's Cafe2U van began serving customers.
The Nitschmans are the sixth American franchisee for Cafe2U, a fast-growing international franchise system. Cafe2U USA plans to have 1,000 vans eventually operating in the U.S.
"We did some research before we bought the franchise, looking at medical businesses and offices that we might serve," Lisa Nitschman said, in a prepared statement. "We asked what their take was on the idea of a mobile espresso van, and they said, 'Oh, please come.'"
Tom Nitschman ticked off a list of Cafe2U's advantages:
"We have no space rent, we get to drive around, meet and talk to people and have fun at work. And the hours are not too long. Most days, we'll be off by 3 in the afternoon."
Cafe2U was founded in Sydney in 2000 and began franchising five years later, quickly growing from 12 vans in the Sydney area to more than 190 vans operating throughout Australia, the U.K., the U.S., Germany and New Zealand. Cafe2U USA is headquartered in Bend, Ore.