Brown Coffee is the most popular coffee shop among Phnom Penh's younger crowd. Managing partner Chang Bunleang, 30, cofounded the chain in 2009 with three cousins, including an architect and a software engineer. All four had returned from studying overseas in the belief they would be more "useful" in their home country, which is crying out for young entrepreneurs.
Having set up 13 stores in the capital and one in Siem Reap, the chain has been running ahead of Starbucks. A Japanese beverage company has expressed interest in equity investment in Brown Coffee. "We look forward to growing beyond our country with Cambodian coffee beans," said Chang, now regarded as one of the most dynamic young businessmen in the country.