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How Much Does It Cost to Open a Boba Shop Through Bubble Tea Franchise In 2024?

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Opening a Boba Tea Shop: How Much Does it Cost to Start a Bubble Tea Business Franchise?



Are you a coffee shop owner looking to diversify your business? The global bubble tea market is booming, valued at $2.75 billion in 2022 and expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.9% until 2030. But how much does it cost to open a boba shop in 2024?

This article explains the costs involved, from startup expenses to ongoing operations, to help you make an informed decision. Read on to explore whether this investment aligns with your business goals.

Considering a bubble tea franchise?

What are the Initial Costs to Open a Boba Shop?

How Much are the Equipment Costs to Start a Bubble Tea Business?

  • Tea Brewing Equipment: Industrial tea brewers, essential for producing high-quality tea, range from $1,000 to $3,000.
  • Refrigeration Units: Commercial refrigerators and freezers for storing tea ingredients and perishables cost between $2,000 and $5,000.
  • Tapioca Pearls Cookers: Specialized pearl cookers ensure consistency and quality, costing around $500 to $1,500.
  • Sealing Machines: Automated cup sealers to secure beverages range from $800 to $2,000.
  • Miscellaneous Supplies: Items like blenders, shakers, and utensils can add another $1,000 to $3,000 to your initial costs.

How Much Does it Cost to Renovate a Space for a Boba Tea Business?

  • Flooring and Paint: High-quality, durable flooring and fresh paint can transform the space, costing between $5,000 and $15,000.
  • Seating and Tables: Comfortable, stylish furniture encourages foot traffic and repeat business. Budget around $3,000 to $10,000.
  • Lighting and Decor: Good lighting and appealing decor create a welcoming ambiance, costing $2,000 to $5,000.

What are the Ongoing Expenses for a Bubble Tea Shop?

How Much Are Monthly Inventory Costs for a Boba Shop?

  • Tea Leaves: Investing in high-quality tea leaves ensures a premium product.
  • Tapioca Pearls: Fresh boba pearls are essential for customer satisfaction.
  • Milk and Syrups: Includes dairy, non-dairy milk options, and various flavored syrups.
  • Other Ingredients: Fruits, jellies, and other toppings add variety to your menu. Monthly inventory management costs around $2,000 to $5,000, depending on your product range and sales volume.

How Much Are Staffing and Training Costs for a Boba Shop?

  • Baristas and Servers: Wages range from $12 to $20 per hour, with monthly payroll expenses between $4,000 and $10,000, depending on the number of employees and hours worked.
  • Training Programs: Initial and ongoing training ensures consistency and high-quality service. This can cost around $500 to $2,000 annually, covering training materials and certifications.

What Additional Costs Should Be Considered When Opening a Boba Shop?

How Much Do Licensing and Permits Cost for a Boba Shop?

  • Health Permits: These can range from $300 to $1,000 depending on local regulations and the specific requirements of your bubble tea shop.
  • Business License: Expect to pay between $50 and $500 for a business license, which can vary depending on your location.
  • Food Handler Certifications: These cost about $100 to $300 per employee, ensuring all staff members are certified to handle food safely.

How Much Should Be Budgeted for Marketing and Promotion?

  • Digital Marketing: Social media advertising, SEO, and email marketing can cost between $500 and $2,000 per month. These strategies help in building brand recognition and driving foot traffic to your shop.
  • Promotional Events: Launch events, local promotions, and sponsorships might add another $1,000 to $3,000 to your budget. These events can create buzz and attract new customers to your milk tea shop.

How Can Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Taxes Affect the Cost of Opening a Boba Shop?

What Are the Costs of Professional Accounting Services for a Boba Shop?

  • Monthly Services: Fees for professional accounting services can range from $200 to $500 per month, depending on the complexity of your finances.
  • Annual Tax Filing: Expect to pay around $1,000 to $2,000 for professional tax preparation and filing, ensuring compliance and optimal tax strategies.

Further reading: Strategic Business Decisions You Should Make For Your Coffee Shop

How Can Efficient Bookkeeping Save Costs for a Boba Shop?

  • Software Subscriptions: Programs like QuickBooks or Xero cost around $20 to $70 per month. These user-friendly tools help simplify the process of tracking expenses and revenues.
  • Training for In-House Staff: Training programs for your staff might add an initial cost of $200 to $500, ensuring they can efficiently use the software and maintain accurate records.

How Long Does it Take to Break Even with a Boba Shop?

Break-even Analysis

Conduct a thorough break-even analysis. Initial and ongoing expenses include equipment costs, labor costs, insurance costs, and regular reviews of operational efficiency.

Operational Efficiency and Revenue Streams

Factors affecting profitability include customer preferences, high-quality ingredients, in-store service, and marketing strategies. Costs will vary widely, but new business owners can expect to break even in about 12-24 months.

How to Be Successful in Opening a Boba Tea Shop in 2024

What Should Coffee Owners Know When Investing in a Boba Tea Shop?

  • Business Model: Determine whether you want to operate as a franchisee or start a new brand. Franchises like Sharetea provide a proven business model and level of support, while a startup offers more customization.
  • Startup Costs: Initial investment includes equipment like tea machines, shaker machines, and dispensers. Be prepared for upfront costs, typically around $100,000 to $300,000, depending on location and size.
  • Accessibility: Choose a high-traffic location to attract customers. Ensure your shop is accessible to various demographics.
  • Supplier Relationships: Establish reliable relationships with suppliers for tea, straws, and other essential ingredients. Regularly review these partnerships to streamline operations.

What is the Business Model for a Bubble Tea Shop?

  • Franchise vs. Startup: A bubble tea franchise involves a franchise fee and adherence to a franchise agreement. This option provides support and brand recognition. A startup allows for creativity but requires a solid business plan and potentially higher risk.
  • Total Investment: Total investment includes the cost of franchise fees, tea machines, liability insurance, and ongoing operational costs.
  • Customization: Startups offer the flexibility to customize your menu and shop's ambiance, which can differentiate your business from competitors.
  • Regularly Review: Consistently evaluate your business model and consult with a professional business advisor to adapt to market changes.

Further reading: How Much Does Coffee Shop Insurance Cost?

Which is Best: Bubble Tea Franchise or Boba Tea Startup?

  • Best Bubble Tea Franchise: Brands like Sharetea are recognized for their quality and support. A franchise offers a structured path to success, although it comes with a franchise fee and strict guidelines.
  • Boba Tea Startup: Starting from scratch allows for complete control over your business. This route requires a thorough business plan and higher initial investment but can lead to greater long-term rewards.

Key Takeaways

  • Initial Investment: Expect to spend between $75,000 to $150,000 to see how much it costs to start a successful boba tea shop.
  • Lease and Renovation: Allocate $20,000 to $50,000 for leasing and renovating the space, a common challenge in the service industry.
  • Equipment Costs: Budget $15,000 to $30,000 for essential pieces of equipment like tea brewers and sealing machines.
  • Permits and Licenses: Plan for $5,000 to $10,000 for permits, licenses, and health inspections to meet tea shop's standards.
  • Operating Expenses: Monthly costs might face, including inventory and staffing, can range from $5,000 to $10,000, requiring sufficient liquid capital.

How can Taxfyle help?

Finding an accountant to manage your bookkeeping and file taxes is a big decision. Luckily, you don't have to handle the search on your own.

At Taxfyle, we connect small businesses with licensed, experienced CPAs or EAs in the US. We handle the hard part of finding the right tax professional by matching you with a Pro who has the right experience to meet your unique needs and will manage your bookkeeping and file taxes for you.

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Tickmark, Inc. and its affiliates do not provide legal, tax or accounting advice. The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal, tax or accounting advice or recommendations. All information prepared on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be relied on for legal, tax or accounting advice. You should consult your own legal, tax or accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction. The content on this website is provided “as is;” no representations are made that the content is error-free.

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June 7, 2024


Kristal Sepulveda, CPA

Kristal Sepulveda, CPA


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