New website 2020
We’re delighted to unveil our new website. Insights based innovation’s been a feature of our journey from Charley’s early days. Our new site reflects our refreshed visual identity and is designed for the best customer experience.
We tell the cocoa story, bringing to life cocoa’s history from Aztec days, exploring cocoa regions and ideal growing conditions, illuminating cocoa processing methods and providing easy to understand explainers on cocoa and chocolate research and on our planet.
Our online store makes it easier than ever to browse and purchase our award winning chocolate bars for delivery to your door with just a few clicks! We’ve added some new sections to quickly identify what’s on special as well as our featured products.
Booking a Charley’s tour is straightforward and there are many helpful hints about what to expect as well as customer reviews. We’d love to welcome you next time you’re in this wonderful part of the world!
We share our amazing journey from our origins to Charley’s growing cocoa and making award winning chocolate in just a few short years. We introduce the wonderful folk from around the world and across multiple disciplines who support us every step of the way. And we provide informative background on our involvement in the communities and regions of far north Queensland and Papua New Guinea.
We wouldn’t be where we are today without our amazing partners. We include a dedicated section with interesting nuggets about our suppliers, retailers and researchers.
Our new site offers an interactive poll where we pose intriguing questions as well as a popular Ask Charley section. Or you can learn about investing in Charley’s and buy your very own share of our exciting organisation.
Thanks to inputs from our talented associates including Non-executive Directors and Advisory Board Members, we feature some fascinating blogs on a range of topics from fermentation, veganism and gluten free to chocolate and sugar. We canvass ideas ranging from sustainability to innovation. And we present opinion pieces on cocoa growing and regional differences.
We’ll regularly update our site so encourage you to check back to try out new products, learn about Charley’s latest activities, see our recent press activity, vote in our polls and be inspired by new blogs!
Capital raise December 2019
In late 2019 Charley’s successfully completed a crowd funding capital raise, adding an additional 150 shareholders. To support the capital raise we used online platform Birchal, an Australian market leader in crowd source funding with a specialty in retail brands. We were a good candidate with our consumer appeal–most people love chocolate–and good news tropical story.
Birchal has an easy to follow process and considerable assistance is offered to first time platform users such as Charley’s. Crowd source funding is regulated so there are various documents and signoffs required along the way. The awareness raising part of the process is important to attract broad interest and consequent expressions of interest that convert to an investment. Birchal’s platform and associated costs are similar to costs of other fundraising types, and our total cost was just under 10% of funds raised (larger raises result in lower percentage costs).
Birchal recommend a reward structure as part of the offer. We offered discounts on purchases and complementary access to Charleys tours depending on the investment size. So, it’s a win-win situation, with shareholders as chocolate consumers and new Charley’s customers while they wait for financial rewards.
Of the new shareholders, many were existing customers.
Funds are being used for increasing manufacturing capacity and marketing to grow sales. On the manufacturing side we’re using the capital raised to increase tree plantings and purchase processing and manufacturing equipment. We’ve recently taken delivery of new equipment - a roaster, a winnower (picture below), another conche as well as an additional manufacturing pod.
The other use of funds is marketing spend in the form of brand building, website upgrade, ecomms upgrade and better use of analytics to track progress.
All in a day’s work for a brand seeking national and global recognition.