M’sian Customisable Granola Brand That Catered To Tiffany & Co.

Author’s Blurb: I tried 3 different brands of granola for a week a few years ago, but never got in because I thought they were all too sweet for my taste. While I understood its nutritional value, part of me also wondered how this extremely sweet cereal was considered healthy.

Unlike me, Vivienne Len and her partner, Jiunn Hung didn’t give up granola so easily, and instead wanted to challenge her stigma because it was so heavily loaded with sugar.

The couple started out by selling granola to their friends and family for fun. Slowly they received more orders from them and countless requests for personalization.

Many of their customers wanted certain ingredients to be swapped or withdrawn due to dietary requirements and personal preferences, which sparked the idea of ​​creating a customizable granola business, Granos.

Their first customers also commented on the desire for less sweet granola, which Vivienne and Jiunn Hung had previously planned to incorporate.

Vivienne and Jiunn Hung at a monthly event called After7 by the DUMC Church / Image Credit: Granos

“The granolas that you find on the market are traditionally made by coating the entire mixture with dry ingredients like oatmeal, nuts and seeds in the form of a sweetener, and baking them in the oven.”

“For our granola, we only lightly sweeten our oatmeal for flavor, while the rest of the ingredients are dry roasted with no added sugar, oil or salt,” Vivienne told Vulcan Post.

They found that it also helps improve the flavor profile of each ingredient in the granola.

What can you get?

Vivienne and Jiunn Hung prepare these ingredients at home. Vivienne manages Granos full time while Jiunn Hung still has a 9-5 in the company.

Jiunn Hung helps where and when he can / Image credit: Granos

They are currently operating entirely as an online store and have not yet sold out in major bazaars, since they started the business when COVID-19 just broke.

From now on, customers can choose to customize from 12 ingredients with 1 base flavor (honey and cinnamon), or opt for The Classic, a pre-mixed combo.

These ingredients include nuts, seeds, dried fruits, and toppings like cornflakes. To personalize an order, customers simply need to complete this Google form.

Those with nut allergies can opt for nut-free granola, but they don’t make nut-free granola in a separate area, Vivienne warned, which can still trigger the allergy for more sensitive consumers.

On festive occasions, they offer limited-time seasonal granolas, such as their Coconut & Pecan & Maple Granola.

The classic, customizable granola is priced at RM 19.90 for a net weight of 250g. They also provide trail mix at RM 14.90 for a net weight of 125g.

Their trail mix (left) and seasonal pecan and maple granola (right) / Image credit: Granos

Delivery to any location will be RM7.50, but you will be eligible for free shipping if your orders are over RM60.

In case you are wondering how their prices compare to other local granola brands, their price has a little difference of RM 1-2 for the amount of 250g. What sets Granos apart from other local granola brands is their personalization.

Spotted by the big names in the industry

Since their launch in September 2019, Granos has already served big names like Shopee, PwC, DHL and Tiffany & Co., the latter being their first notable customer.

“The manager was a fan of our granolas and asked us if we would like to work with them for their annual Christmas dinner in 2019,” said Vivienne.

“We ran an interactive ‘build your own granola pot’ station where their customers could customize their own granolas on site. We also printed different variations of Christmas labels that they could choose from, as we wanted to make the experience as personal as possible. “

Their first corporate event with Tiffany & Co. / Image credit: Granos

They’ve since been approached by other big names to organize personalized granola gifts for their employees and customers.

Vivienne also shared that these days, companies are increasingly asked by their employees for healthier food options, which is why the majority of their customers are B2B.

However, they definitely want to expand into the B2C market, as they have noted a high retention rate there.

On average, Vivienne earns around RM15,000 per month, and sometimes more during the holiday season.

Catering for weddings also / Image credit: Granos

Business challenges

Since catering to corporate clients is one of their biggest sources of income, Vivienne is overwhelmed on the day she has to manage an order of 150 personalized treatment packages, for example.

Fortunately, she sometimes has the help of part-time employees. But since the oven she uses can produce around 20 pouches / hour, that means that on some days Vivienne has to spend around 7-8 hours baking.

Another Tiffany & Co. event for Raya and a corporate gift box / Image Credit: Granos

As they anticipate more of these demands, Vivienne plans to move soon and rent a larger kitchen space.

“Our goal is to eventually launch an interactive concept store where customers can try different ingredients and even customize their own granola on the spot,” Vivienne told Vulcan Post.

However, their immediate goal for 2021 is to reduce their company’s carbon footprint and change the way people think about waste and disposable packaging, the logistics of which are still under wraps for now.

Conclusion: As a picky eater and someone who prefers less sugar in their food, what Granos comes up with seems pretty tempting to me to give granola another try. Perhaps I will then easily recognize the healthy aspect of this food.

  • You can read more about Granos here.
  • You can read other startups we’ve written about here.

Featured Image Credit: Vivienne Len, Founder of Granos

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Jothi Venkat

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