Could "Big Face Coffee" be the next Starbucks?

By Jelisa Castrodale
September 18, 2020
Advertisement

Jimmy Butler, an All-Star forward for the Miami Heat, has had a big September so far. On Monday, he turned 31 and celebrated his birthday by having his personal chef prepare a gourmet meal for his NBA Bubble-bound teammates. On Thursday night, the Heat took a commanding 2-0 lead over the Boston Celtics in the NBA Eastern Conference Finals. And he seems to have filed three trademarks for the "Big Face Coffee" side-hustle that he's been running out of his Florida hotel room, too.

On Thursday, Washington, D.C. trademark attorney Josh Gerben tweeted a video detailing the applications Butler filed for Big Face Coffee and its "No I.O.U.s" slogan. Butler filed the paperwork on September 4, and he is seeking trademarks for general apparel like hats and shirts, housewares like mugs and cups, and "general cafe items," a category that includes coffee beans, coffee grounds, tea bags, and loose leaf teas, as well as assorted baked goods.

Credit: Jim Poorten / Contributor/Getty Images

"So Jimmy is apparently taking this pretty seriously, because the three applications that he filed were not particularly cheap," Gerben said. "The USPTO filing fee for each application would've been $1,375 apiece. So Jimmy's spending well over $4,000 in just USPTO filing fees to file these applications, let alone what he paid his attorney."

We're guessing that Butler probably has the money for it—and he could be investing what he's made from coffee sales alone. Last month, Sun-Sentinel sports reporter Ira Winderman shared a picture of the sign from Butler's in-room coffee business, and his prices make Starbucks look like a little kid's lemonade stand. A cup from Big Face Coffee is $20, whether you get a small, medium, or large. Butler accepts cash only and there are no I.O.U.s, not even for his Heat teammates.

Butler was prompted to start the biz after he heard complaints about the coffee that was being served inside the Bubble. He had taken his French press with him when the Heat checked into their hotel, and he decided that it would be a good time to cash in on his coffeemaking capabilities. "I'm working on my coffee skills," Butler told ESPN's Rachel Nichols. "After my career, I'm opening my coffee shop. Right now, I'm charging 20 bucks a cup. So if you want some, come through."

According to the sign outside Butler's door, Big Face serves lattes, pour-overs, cappuccinos, Americanos, espressos, Red Eyes, Macchiatos, mochas, and cafe au lait. (No, we don't know how he makes some of those with a French press either.)

Butler even rolled up to Game One of the series against the Celtics wearing a tank top and a face mask that said "Big Face Coffee Owner." But his days running the only java joint in the Bubble might be coming to an end. On Thursday, the @NBABubbleLife twitter account shared a pic of a handwritten sign from what could be a new competitor.

"Little Face Coffee Shop," it said. "The best little coffee shop in the Bubble." And a cup from Little Face just costs $5 bucks. Your move, Jimmy.