What Motivates Siyi (CEO of Tea Plays) & What Started in Mannheim?
Tea Plays CEO Siyi made a fateful decision in 2014: to host a 'Tea Meetup' in Mannheim, Germany. What she discovered was a global love of tea that inspired her to refresh the way Chinese tea was sold and enjoyed.
The story goes back to November 2014 in Germany. I was working in a traditional manufacturing company close to Stuttgart. I had been a tea fanatic since childhood. So I started to enrich my herbal knowledge by organizing cross-cultural 'Tea Meetups'. By July 2015, I had collected first-hand herbal insights from the 286 Meetup members coming from countries as diverse as Germany, Egypt, India, Korea, Israel and Lebanon, et al.
This opened my eyes as much as it enriched my taste buds: tea drinking could be more fun and diverse than I had imagined, and bring people together in truly enriching ways!
Back in China in 2015, I found that Chinese Tea Markets were still packing their teas in dull metal tins or packing them into ungainly brown clay pots. Choosing the right tea had always been such a complex maze; one should know the different tastes, from Taiwanese Oolong Tea to the Red Tea from Fujian, and the modes of presentation that Chinese retailers and producers used did not make things easier.
I felt like the experience of tea should be made more accessible without being dumbed down. It should not be simply a matter of saying, 'I want a stronger taste,' or 'I'll take the green tea because it's healthy.' Rather I felt that the whole tea experience was millennial-unfriendly and that and we were totally missing out on authentic traditional tea culture.
So I told myself the following: 'I have to do something here...' I started sketching a name for an exciting new undertaking, and 'Tea Plays' sprang to mind. It would seem 'Too FUN' to be real tea at first, but in fact the product would allow people to get a taste of Real Chinese tea.
Tags: From Siyi