Indigo Trading closes downtown coffee shop, seeks new strategy

TAMPA — With the closing of the downtown Indigo Trading Co. on Franklin and Twiggs streets downtown, the locally based coffee chain is down to two hospital cafes.

But don’t count Indigo out. Company president Jeff Darrey is keeping his cards close to his chest, but he says the artisan roaster will have an announcement about a comeback soon.

“We’re right in the middle of negotiations for new strategy that hopefully, I would say some time in November, we’ll announce,” Darrey said Wednesday. “It’s just a different format.”

Indigo’s flagship location at Howard Avenue and Interstate 275 was shuttered and demolished in 2008 for construction of an office building. Another drive-through unit at I-275 and Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd. also closed.

The full-service Hyde Park Village Indigo closed earlier this year, and the downtown site in August.

“Our leases had termed, and based on where we’re going with this and what we’re looking at, we didn’t renew the leases in either of those two locations,” Darrey said.

Indigo still has outlets in St. Joseph’s Hospital on MLK and at St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital across the street.

Tampa has proven receptive to local coffee shops who dared take on Starbucks, the Seattle trend-setter that now has over 20,000 stores worldwide. Indigo, Kahwa and Buddy Brew all have built a loyal fan base.

“There’s always room for good company,” Darrey said. “They (Starbucks) set the tone. They’ve built a market. They’re friends. Competition is good, and we’re not going to impact their business, but they help our business.”

Indigo’s full-service cafes offered lattes, gourmet cookies and pastries and fresh wraps. The company continues to accept online orders for its two-pound bagged coffee, and it ships to homes and offices.

“People in Tampa appreciate good coffee, and we’ve got a superior blend,” said Darrey.

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