Leeds entrepreneur The Savvy Baker shares her recipe for success as she opens her first cafe in Roundhay


But Savannah Roqaa admits she fell into the baking industry “completely by accident”, when her lockdown hobby overtook her wildest dreams.

Her brand The Savvy Baker now supplies treats to customers across the country and the 26-year-old celebrates the launch of her first cafe in Roundhay this week.

The latest addition sits alongside her online store and commercial bakery and she is thrilled to connect with her customers in person.

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Savannah Roqaa and Jordan Simms outside their first The Savvy Baker cafe in Lidgett Lane, Roundhay (Picture: James Hardisty)

Many of them have followed her journey from novice baker to entrepreneur and she openly shares the challenges that have arisen along the way.

“We keep going and don’t stop. We are always thinking about the next step – where the next cafe will be and how big we can get.

“I think people are interested in it because I’m the face of the brand.

The cafe will feature Savvy Baker’s familiar brownies, brookies, cookies, flapjacks, cakes, pies and sticky stuff, as well as North Star coffee (Picture: James Hardisty)

“They see the journey, they see me. I put my mistakes in it and I’m so raw with everything.

“I have customers ordering from me since March 2020, picking up their order from me while I was covered in flour.”

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Savannah said she got her motivation from her family – her parents and sister all started businesses and she dreamed of following in their footsteps.

Savannah shared her recipe for success after growing her business from a lockdown hobby (Picture: James Hardisty)

“I always knew I wanted to have my own business,” she said. “I just thought it would be makeup or fashion.

“I like that every day is completely different. If I have a day off, then it’s on me. I don’t have to report to anyone.

“If something fails, it’s also my fault. It’s good to be in charge of everything.”

The power of Instagram has been instrumental in the growth of the brand; Savannah regularly shares her latest creations on the platform, as well as the cafe’s renovation journey.

The café will feature Savvy Baker’s familiar brownies, brookies, cookies, pancakes, cakes, pies and sticky stuff, as well as North Star coffee.

“He’s so supportive,” Savannah added.

“Anything I need to do that I can pass on to him, it takes a huge weight off my shoulders.”

The Savvy Baker shows no signs of slowing down – along with the cafe, Savannah recently launched new brownie bins that have flown off the shelves.

For others looking to start their own business, Savannah shared her recipe for success.

“Always be ready to take risks,” she said.

“You can never start a business without taking risks and if you’re not ready to do it, it just won’t happen.

“It can be scary, but you don’t need a lot of money to start a business – I had nothing when I started mine.

“It’s because I took so many risks that I’m in the position where I have the bakery, the coffee shop and a successful business.”

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