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The Republic of Tea: The Story of the Creation of a Business, as Told Through the Personal Letters of Its Founders Paperback – Deckle Edge


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Business (September 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385420579
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385420570
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #387,770 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

More than a chronicle of the birth of a new business, this unusual 20-month exchange of faxes between the Zieglers (husband-and-wife founders of Banana Republic) and their partner-to-be, Rosenzweig (future Republic of Tea CEO), records with almost missionary zeal its authors' determination to convert a stressed-out, coffee-gulping society into serene sippers of tea--and make millions in the process. After much high-flown, often repetitious philosophizing, self-doubt and discussion of personal relationships, the trio finally got down to market research (in the U.S. and England), product development and the nitty-gritty of sales, promotion and operations. When The Republic of Tea was launched this past January, the partners soon realized that "a business tends to develop a mind of its own that is independent of its founder." Illustrations.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

What is the creative process involved in starting a business? This theme is the focus of The Republic of Tea , a collection of letters between Ziegler and his wife, Patricia, co-founders of the Banana Republic, and Bill Rosenzweig, an entrepreneur. The letters start in 1990 when Rosenzweig and Ziegler exchange ideas regarding starting a tea company and continue to the month before The Republic of Tea (TRoT) is incorporated. The partners discuss types of teas to sell, preparing a product line of children's teas, and designing a catalog. Commentaries by Rosenzweig and the Zieglers regarding the correspondence are provided throughout the book. The letters illustrate the energy, drive, and imagination of these entrepreneurs who made the idea of the company a reality. Recommended for all business collections.
- Lucy Heckman, St. John's Univ. Lib., New York
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

More About the Author

Mel Ziegler is co-founder of Banana Republic and the Republic of Tea. Prior to his entrepreneurial endeavors, he was a journalist at the Miami Herald and the San Francisco Chronicle, and wrote for New York Magazine.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Great read and really intriguing.
Yaron Avidan
This is like having Bill as your mentor and him telling you the harsh advice that you need.
Andrew
They were the originators of the greatest store I've ever been in, Banana Republic.
C. Ball

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By C. Ball VINE VOICE on May 4, 2002
Format: Paperback
Mel & Patricia Zeigler are geniuses at creating raving fan businesses. They were the originators of the greatest store I've ever been in, Banana Republic. They sold it to the Gap and it is NOTHING like it's former self, which was reminescent of an Indiana Jones adventure complete with jungle headquarters and a jeep.
This book documents their next venture and details how they developed the business. It is like an adventure as you follow the letters to each other with new ideas.
If anything, I use this as a model for writing business plans. That's the biggest compliment I can give.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 16, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book was an "accidental" purchase (if you believe such things are accidents). I am in the process of starting up my own business & had had my belly full of the "Make a Gazillion Dollars in Your Sleep!" genre, as well as the "Fourteen [rational, linear] Steps to Guaranteed Business Success" types. Then this book shows up and my thinking about my own business startup changes -- the business re-invents itself as we begin to work together. This book is the perfect antidote to the 80s/90s hype-style-M&A-IPO feeding frenzy. This book has encouraged me to slow down, go for commitment and integrity, and truly succeed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Dan Gertsacov on July 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
My thanks to the authors for sharing- honestly, openly and truthfully- what it really takes in business to maximize objectives that include but go beyond the simple pursuit of profit. This is a must read for anyone who wants to launch or scale a socially responsible business venture.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Sheila Germain on June 1, 2002
Format: Paperback
If you're in a partnership, starting a business, or just looking for some inspiration to keep you focused on the direction you're going, then buy this book.
The illustrations and the background "thinking" that are added to the conversation truly give the reader a sense of understanding.
What I found to be the most interesting is how quickly the entire idea of TROT came together. Within a month of meeting, Mel and Bill had the ideas and the philosophy of TROT down. When it comes down to it, there was very little change from those initial conversations until the final product launched.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 2, 1998
Format: Paperback
I concur with everything the reader below me has mentioned. But what makes this book worth the price was the appendix containing the Republic of Tea business plan. This is the only biz book I have read that contained the actual plan that was used to start a business.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Nick J. Frost on February 23, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book has been an extremely usful resource to my company. Although my company also started small, Team 5 Technologies, it is now a large corperation. This book helped me understand more about giving the customer what they want, and putting myself in the customers shoes. After all, a company is only worth the value of it's products. With this is mind my good friends, read the book, Nick J. Frost - T5T
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 4, 1999
Format: Paperback
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It is unique in that it was written at the time ideas and creative juices were flowing (through a series of faxes)...not in retrospect as most books are. It is an inspiration to create in life that which is in harmony with who you are.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 13, 1997
Format: Paperback
This book is an interesting collection of personal and business faxes, that were involved
in the creation of "The Republic of Tea" Although
the book can be somewhat slow overall it offers an interesting inside looks at what goes on the human-side during the startup of a company, the personal emotions and conflicts. There are times where the book reads like a conversation between two hippies watching flowers grow exciting for the people involved but not much action for others. Its a fun book to read although not an essential must read bussiness book.If you are interested in starting up your own company you should read it as a mind relaxer in between those "How-to Make it Big in a week" books.

One confession, I did go to my local health food store and bought a can of Tea after reading this book.
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