Sussex tea entrepreneur serves up cuppas at 10 Downing Street

A Sussex woman who started a successful Japanese tea business was at 10 Downing Street this week serving up her tea to Richi Sunak’s wife Akshata Murty.
Katherine Swift, Founder of OMGTea outside Downing StreetKatherine Swift, Founder of OMGTea outside Downing Street
Katherine Swift, Founder of OMGTea outside Downing Street

Also present, at the prestigious event, were fashion and beauty expert Trinny Woodall, Ella Mills from Deliciously Ella and Manchester fashion designer Nadine Merabi.

Katherine Swift, founder of Brighton based OMGTea was invited to the event, on Wednesday April 24, that celebrated female-owned brands,On Wednesday (April 24th) OMGTea founder Katherine Swift travelled to 10 Downing Street to make her organic matcha green tea for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s wife, Akshata Murty and guests.

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Katherine said: “I wasn’t quite sure what to expect going to Downing Street for the first time but it was a really warm and friendly and informal atmosphere from the moment we arrived.

“We set up an OMGTea table with our product. The team at Downing Street thoughtfully specifically selected a green tablecloth for us - that was a nice touch.

“Mrs. Murty had a cup of matcha and really enjoyed it. We had a good chat and I was able to share the story behind the brand with her.

“She was very down to earth and warm and had discussions with many entrepreneurs taking the time to listen to their personal stories.

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“It was really special to be in a place with so much history. We walked down the stairs where there are signed portraits of all past Prime Ministers, and one wall is all the Queen’s Prime Ministers. It was inspiring and made us feel like we were part of history.

Many guests sampled the matcha, including fashion and beauty expert Trinny Woodall, Ella Mills from Deliciously Ella and Manchester fashion designer Nadine Merabi. The feedback was excellent from everyone.”

Swift is part of the Buy Women Built (BWB) network which is raising the profile of female entrepreneurs and their brands.

She added: “I was over the moon to be invited to afternoon tea at No. 10 Downing St along with Buy Women Built. There were speeches by Akshata Murty, Charlotte Keenan from Goldman Sachs, and Sahar Hashemi, founder of Buy Women Built. Sahar truly champions female businesses with the objective of inspiring younger generations.“There are many great female entrepreneurs in Brighton and across the UK and yesterday was a really special way to recognise some of us. I started OMGTea ten years ago at a time when very few people even knew what matcha tea was. We’ve been through lockdowns, Brexit and tough economic conditions but we are doing better than ever.“I really enjoyed sharing our story and it was a real honour to serve our tea to Akshata Murty and the other guests at the event. We prepared our high grade organic matcha using our award-winning AAA+ grade.”The Buy Women Built network includes Brighton-based entrepreneurs including Helen Pattinson of chocolate company Montezuma’s and Brighton Gin’s Kathy Caton MBE.

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