Malaysian Stand Mixer For Baking In Small Kitchens
Author’s presentation text: As someone who doesn’t like to cook on my own, I’m sure to watch Masterchef and a lot of Buzzfeed’s Tasty, not to mention walking through kitchen appliance stores just to admire the kitchen supplies.
Justin Lim also shares this sentiment about cooking appliances although he is not an avid cook or baker himself.
He remembers a childhood when he woke up half-conscious to watch his mother add ingredients to a bowl and mix them until something started to form; These were his first encounters to realize how essential kitchen equipment was for bakers.
Later, he grew up to major in mechanical engineering and did an internship abroad in a factory, but he still had the intrigue in mind of getting to the bottom of the mechanism of a kitchen mixer.
To study what else was there and how they could build a separate stand mixer for his business, Kitmens, he purchased many mixers from other brands to better understand the market he was operating in.
With a strong emphasis on function and performance, early versions of Kitmens mixers came out ugly and bulky.
They used these MVPs as a learning opportunity by sending them to baker friends to test their functionality and quality before returning to the drawing board with the new comments.
In an interview with Vulcan Post, Justin shared that his vision was heavily inspired by Apple. He wanted the Kitmens mixer to be a stylish, trendy mixer with smart technology.
A year and a half later, Kitmens launched its first stand mixer, the KM-B5 with an all-metal body and a compact design that also doubles as storage space for the various mixer accessories.
The blender comes with an LED display that works as both a speedometer and a timer so bakers don’t need to set a separate timer to keep track of how long you mix.
When our sister brand DiscoverKL tested the KM-B5, they found it to be much quieter than a Kenwood blender.
Justin told Vulcan Post that the mixer was due to launch in March 2020, but they had to halt production during the MCO.
He said: “Due to the pandemic, we immediately stopped to restructure our plan. But in May 2020, many of those staying at the AGC house started cooking!
Seeing the opportunity, they quickly resumed production to launch on October 10.
First impressions count
Returning to Justin’s penchant for Apple, he wanted to create packaging for Kitmens that would also be minimalist and clean, which would create a different unboxing experience for customers.
Think about the common packaging for kitchen appliances. You will likely find the touted benefits and features of the product on the box.
When you open its top flaps, you will come across the top view of the mixer, seeing only its head under the styrofoam by which it is protected.
Justin wanted a different first impression on Kitmens’ mixer. He envisioned a minimalistic outer packaging (think boxes of Apple products) that resembled a gift box, with the KM-B5 lying on its side to show its full view when opened.
But to execute this idea would cost him 20k RM on the polystyrene alone. Due to its complex shape, a new mold for polystyrene had to be customized.
After weighing their decision, they concluded that they just didn’t have the budget at the time.
“So ultimately we canceled the plan for the gift box and stuck to the normal packaging, but still tried to improve the design of the outer box with a more minimalist look and some quotes. “Justin said.
On demand Like fresh baked goods
According to Justin, 300 ready-to-use blenders sold in the first week of Kitmens launch. They are priced at RM 1,095 each as they are currently on sale (original price is RM 1,495).
As it takes them 2 months to complete production of a new batch of stand mixers, Kitmens now only manufactures them based on pre-orders, a strategy they use to control and maintain a healthy cash flow.
The team is currently in discussions on exporting the KM-B5 from Kitmens to China and neighboring countries like Brunei and Singapore.
Justin projects that in the next 2 years, Kitmens will have more than 10 products under his name, although they are slowly taking off.
“Developing a new brand and a new product takes a lot of effort. We believe that focusing on one task at a time and doing it best before moving on to the next product has always been a safer and more responsible option to the public, ”he said.
Conclusion: Although the product has a sleek design, its all-metal body would make it very heavy to move in and out of storage. So, for those who have enough space in the kitchen, it is a nice piece for home decorating when sitting on the kitchen counter.
- You can read more about Kitmens here.
- You can read more about other Malaysian startups here.
Featured Image Credit: Justin Lim, Co-Founder of Kitmens / Vulcan Post
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