Hoda Paripoush is among the elite group of the first certified tea sommeliers in North America. Her tea knowledge is further supplemented by professional studies in perfumery at the Studio Des Fragrance in Grasse, France. Building on the principles of perfumery, combined with her love of tea and unwavering commitment to quality, she has created an artisan line of exceptional teas that speak to the elements of scent and taste.
My first job ever was… working at a hot dog cart in my hometown of Brockville, ON.
I decided to be an entrepreneur because… what I wanted to do was so unconventional at the time, that I had to create my own path for it.
My proudest accomplishment is… experiencing my tea aboard VIA Rail, especially because during our early years in Canada my parents worked as evening custodians at the Brockville VIA Rail station.
My boldest move to date was… selling our house to fund the growth of Sloane Tea.
I surprise people when I tell them… my family came to Canada as religious refugees.
My best advice to people starting out in business is… go forward like you know it will succeed.
My biggest setback was… COVID-19.
I overcame it by… pivoting how we view and run our business — innovation is key.
The best thing about being an entrepreneur is… that you have control over your destiny, and practically speaking, you have control over your schedule.
If I had an extra hour in the day I would… sleep (I operate on too little).
If you googled me, you still wouldn’t know… much about my family and upbringing, which is pivotal to who I am today.
The one thing I wish I knew when starting my business… is that you shouldn’t let the need for perfection prevent you from moving forward, because sometimes, just being the first one there, even if you need improvement, is what matters.
I stay inspired by… challenging myself with creative and unique projects — even if they are outside of my comfort zone.
The future excites me because… the platform of how businesses operate is changing quickly and dramatically, opening up opportunities for growth and innovation at an unprecedented level.
My next step is to… go digital — to curate and create online education on a whole host of topics related to tea and the world of hospitality, via collaborations, workshops and master classes.