El Coquí Panadería y Repostería
Owner: Yazmin Auli
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Business: Bakery and Restaurant
Purpose of Loan: Equipment Purchase and Property Renovations
20 years of hard work and perseverance has its sweet (and savory) rewards. Yazmin Auli is one of the owners of El Coquí Panadería y Repostería, one of the most popular spots for Puerto Rican pastries and comfort food in Philadelphia’s Kensington neighborhood.
Back in 2001, Yazmin launched a small bakery business from her home. After several years of hard work and building a solid customer base, she opened a storefront location. Demand for her delicious baked goods and array of hot food items continued to grow. She and her partner relocated the business to a larger space, which accommodated increased production, in-house dining, and streamlined operations to serve both bakery and restaurant/take-out customers simultaneously.
Yazmin originally received financing through our Affinity Group Lending program. Since then, we have provided multiple loans to help with the purchase of additional equipment and to complete property renovations. These improvements fueled further business growth and resulted in new employment opportunities for local residents.
Like the rest of the food industry, El Coquí was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. During this challenging time, Community First Fund helped Yazmin secure significant funds through the SBA Paycheck Protection Program and the Philadelphia City Emergency Fund. Through it all, El Coquí still maintains a busy kitchen and a loyal and satisfied customer base.