PETALING JAYA: “There is a silver lining in every circumstance.”
That is the precept Chunky Monkeys co-founders and administrators Fatin Rasyiqah Mustaza and Saiful Adzli Ghazali have caught to whereas navigating the murkiness of working a startup within the midst of a international pandemic.
In a latest interview with SunBiz, Fatin defined that whereas it’s at all times a gamble with regards to working a startup, the job losses folks confronted through the motion management order (MCO) interval proved to be a answer to the corporate’s staffing points.
“Our workers are all primarily part-timers and we misplaced a few expertise alongside the best way of our development as a result of we weren’t in a position to pay them as a everlasting workers. We solely function for weekly deliveries, due to this fact there was no want for everlasting workers.
“During MCO there have been many layoffs within the F&B business and we had been in a position to soak up good expertise from the business to hitch our crew. It has by no means been simple to seek out good expertise who’re in a position to perceive our merchandise and to have been in a position to rating some throughout that interval is a blessing,” she mentioned.
That mentioned, the corporate did face a variety of challenges through the MCO, as Fatin and Saiful had been uncertain if they might proceed to function. However, after some tweaks to operation hours, distributors and supply days, the corporate was in a position to soldier on.
“Our orders had been fairly sturdy through the first few weeks of MCO. We guessed folks had been simply following their urges to top off on meals from the concern of no entry to any. But after that it began to decelerate, which we assumed was as a result of folks needed to devour their perishables that that they had stocked up earlier than.
“At the identical time, many had been making extra prudent selections of their spending from financial uncertainties, however throughout that interval, our fundamental menu objects just like the cauliflower rice and desserts orders had been nonetheless coming in as standard,” mentioned Saiful.
Since the implementation of the conditional MCO, nevertheless, Chunky Monkeys has seen regular development of their orders.
Chunky Monkeys, a ketogenic (keto) eating regimen meal supply service, was launched in January 2019, initially with orders made by Instagram or Whatsapp solely, and fulfilled in a dwelling kitchen.
Following an sudden surge in orders in February that very same 12 months, the duo discovered themselves overwhelmed and unable to fulfil orders in a well timed method. They took a break to maneuver operations to a centralised kitchen, and relaunched in July 2019 with collaborations with Oddle as its ordering platform and web site host, and Lalamove as its supply companion.
As gross sales grew steadily, the pair determined to take yet one more gamble, and launched Chunky Monkeys’ sister firm Nom Nom through the MCO.
Saiful mentioned the thought was pushed by the necessity to cater to the mass market at a time when folks had been caught at dwelling throughout a festive season.
“The unique plan to launch Nom Nom was set for the start of April, we weighed our choices and determined to only go together with it in the direction of the tip of April. This gamble paid off because it was additionally simply in time for Ramadan and we primarily catered to that crowd.
“During Ramadan we acquired the phrase out for Nom Nom by becoming a member of the native FB Ramadan bazaars the place we acquired primarily recognised for our Singapore murtabak. The Singapore murtabak was our greatest vendor throughout Ramadan. During the Raya interval we made meals choices like rendang, kuah kacang and dendeng which garnered fairly a response,” he defined.
Saiful mentioned that as a result of Nom Nom caters to the plenty, the enterprise will have the ability to complement the corporate’s each day recurring revenue to make sure that money circulate is stronger for future growth.
On what lies forward for Chunky Monkeys and Nom Nom, Fatin mentioned each manufacturers are basically nonetheless within the infancy stage and there’s far more room for development.
“Our next course of action is to expand Chunky Monkeys’ operations to be able to deliver daily and weekly. To do this we will need to expand our kitchen further and expand our team to enable interchangeable roles for Chunky Monkeys and Nom Nom. As I said, always look for a silver lining, so seeing that many F&B businesses are facing a tough time, we are scouting for a takeover of assets or business in order to expand our operations,” she mentioned.
In addition, the pair wish to enterprise into business buying and selling, with the intention to create merchandise to produce to supermarkets and pharmacies.
“This will create a new avenue for us to reach a larger market share where we can offer our products outside of the Klang Valley too. But this is still in the R&D and due diligence process and with this new norm there are many more factors to weigh, but this is our long-term plan,” mentioned Saiful.
They are additionally on the lookout for funding for the subsequent stage of development, both by way of authorities grants or angel traders.