How Tonia Jahshan built Steeped Tea into a huge retail empire

iF Clients   /  


We’re thrilled to share that Steeped Tea’s Tonia Jahshan (a LiON’S LAIR Lion from 2014-2016) has landed 1st place on Profit Magazine’s W100 list of Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneur, along with the cover of Canadian Business – congratulations Tonia!

Below is a excerpt from her Canadian Business profile:

“It sometimes takes a terrible event to spark a life-changing epiphany. Tonia Jahshan—happily pregnant for the first time—was headed home from a normal day at the sales and marketing agency she ran with her father.

As she drove, she felt the first symptoms of what every expectant parent dreads: a miscarriage.  The loss was devastating. In the weeks that followed, mired in grief, she reassessed everything, including her career. One big question kept coming up: Do I really want to sell electrical equipment for the rest of my life?

It was 2006. Jahshan had been working at the agency for five years. She relished the selling aspect of the job and her $100,000 salary, but the tools she was peddling for clients didn’t exactly stoke her passion. She began to feel restless and disengaged. In an attempt to shake the funk, she and her husband, Hatem, escaped from their home in Ancaster (a suburb of Hamilton, Ont.) for a getaway at a Halifax bed and breakfast. There, Jahshan was served a cup of cream of Earl Grey tea. “I was so blown away by the taste and smell,” she recalls, her voice zealous. “It was amazing.” The owner told her it was made with loose tea leaves from a shop in Mahone Bay, N.S. The Jahshans drove an hour west, found the boutique and stocked up.”

Read the full story here!


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