Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Dear Tea Friends:

2008 is quickly coming to an end. My hope is you are enjoying the holiday season and looking forward to the new year.

Looking back on 2008, I think it is fair to say that it has been a turbulent year.

We have witnessed oil rise and fall nearly $100 per barrel. The US toxic mortgage crisis precipitated a financial crisis throughout the world. Commodities prices have fallen, the stock market lost half its value, and finally to cap off the year, the Madoff Scandal projects 50 billion dollars in lost savings of many charities, banks, and wealthy investors. Indeed, it is a troubling time; with economic strife usually comes political strife.

Along with this economic down-turn we must not forget the social impact: lost jobs, lost homes, lost savings, hopelessness, and sadness. However, I think the governments of today are stepping forward and trying their best to deal with the current situation. I also think that we must all keep things in perspective. Regardless of how bad it may seem, keep in mind it could always be worse. During this season, we must never forget that there are countries in this world where the lives of their citizens are much worse off. Take Zimbabwe, for example: the Mugabe government, who seized power undemocratically are facing a cholera epidemic that may spread to other neighboring countries. Mugabe is refusing to cooperate with foreign aid and health workers and even denies that the epidemic exists. It is crazy that someone would allow their citizens, particularly innocent women and children, to suffer so much.

When I feel down, I just watch the news and realize that my life could be much worse and am thankful that I have shelter, access to health care, food, and the ability to live and work freely. We must never forget how lucky we are, particularly at this time of year when we are consuming chocolates, turkey, stuffing, and other foods.

I guess the point I am trying to make is "Be Happy" and "Be Grateful" because you only have one life to live and I encourage you to make the most of it. Consider yourself fortunate to know that you have choices and the ability to make your life better should you choose to. If you learn anything from my story, you will realize that I have always tried to design my life, I think in part because I am a dreamer by nature and understand that if I focus on my goals then ultimately they will be achieved.

Looking ahead to 2009, I am actually very excited for several reasons:

First, during economic downturns, sales of creature comforts actually rise instead of fall. For instance, cosmetics purchases increase, movie attendance rises, and let's not forget, tea. In fact, if history repeats itself, the tea industry is projected to grow from 7.4 billion to more than 15 billion in the next five years. Tea, in fact, is mirroring the rise of the coffee industry during our last recession in the 80s...recall the rise of Starbucks! To learn more, read the excerpts of the news release I posted.

Second, historically, during economic downturns, many new businesses start up particularly in niche industries. In fact, 18 of the 30 current Dow Jones industrial index companies were launched during economic downturns. Since my main focus is to help entrepreneurs start businesses, this is very encouraging because our product line focuses on specialty tea which is projected to have the fastest growth. If you want to learn more about our programs, please click here.

Finally, tea is a consumable that contributes to long life. Regardless of the economic situation, tea will always be consumed because it is a part of our lives. Interestingly, I recently read an article that the tea trade between India and Pakistan is actually projected to increase, despite the political tensions. Another interesting tidbit of trivia is the fact that tea is the second most consumed beverage in the world next to water. Regardless of the political or economic situation, the trade in tea will continue and this is great news for anyone who wants to start a tea business, particularly in North America which is playing catch up with the rest of the world.

For the remaining part of this year my goals are as follows: sleep lots...I need to catch up; reflect on 2008 and plan for 2009; greet Suruchi and Shivam at the airport on the 28th as I miss them dearly because they have been away since November 17th; finalize our inventory because I have a shipment in India and may want to add to it; and finally, start working on my year end documents for my book keeper and accountant. Of course, I am also working on some promotions for the New Year, so keep your eye on your e-mail as well.

From the bottom of my heart, may your holiday season be joyful, happy, and full of gratitude. I wish you a prosperous and happy new year.

Be Happy! Be Grateful!

Drink Tea and Prosper!


Best Regards,

Sanjay Gupta

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas to you and your family Sanjay.

May 2009 bring you peace, love, and joy.

Thank you for a lovely Christmas Card.

Blessings to you now and always,

Pam Smith