I was told there were ‘no job opportunities’ so started a drink side hustle & made 7-figures – my second brand's big too | The Sun

A WOMAN who was told there were “no job opportunities” in her area claims she is now raking in seven figures with her bubble tea business.

Serene Lim, from Melbourne, got inspired to launch her business after seeing the tea-based drink boom in popularity in Australia.

The 28-year-old businesswoman told MailOnline: “While I was in my first job, I started Cup 49, but it was only meant to be a side hustle, I never really had the dream of running a small business of being an entrepreneur. I just did it because it was so fun.

“Bubble tea was a massive growing industry, especially in 2019. I feel like that's when bubble tea was popping up everywhere. Now you can find six bubble tea shops sometimes on a busy street.”

She found on average, each shop would sell around 48 drinks every hour. 

Serene added: “That's 48 plastic cups, plastic lids, plastic bags, plastic straws. That's why we called it Cup 49, because we wanted it to be the 49th and ever-reusable.”

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Serene launched Cup 49 in September 2019, and claims it rakes in seven figures annually, with her best month seeing her bring in £91,472.

Due to her success, she was able to quit her job and work full-time for her business – and she didn’t stop there.

Serene saw a gap in the market for “salon-worthy manicures” at home, as people try to reduce visits to expensive salons with the cost of living crisis.

She found a little-known technology that wasn’t big in Australia, which involves stickers that adhere to your natural nail shape and are cured under a UV lamp.

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The product hardens and reportedly lasts more than two weeks.

She founded her second business – Gellae nail stickers –  in November 2022 and says she is now earning £76,000 a month from its success.

Serene started Gellae with an investment of £2,500 from her first business, and her best month has seen her bring in £79,000.

The nutrition student recalled how university lecturers warned her that her field had no job opportunities in Australia, however she knew she wasn’t going to give up her dreams of success.

Speaking of her nail business, she said she saw how well the product was selling abroad and wanted to bring it to her area.

Serene advised that they are different from press-on nails as they mould perfectly to your nail shape – and can be used to stop you biting your nails.

The Gellae kit starts at £26 and includes a UV lamp, alcohol wipes, nail file, cuticle stick and two or more sticker designs.

After this, each sticker sheet – which contains 20 individual stickers – costs £13.

She added: “We've got customers that have it for more than a month. It really depends on things like if you've got really oily nail beds.”

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