Since the last time we caught up with the brand was in early 2018, we decided to speak to King Quah, co-founder of SaltyCustoms, once again to find out what they’ve been up to since then.
Before he shared enthusiastically about several other new projects such as Yeefu’s launch and Doobie’s comeback, he revealed that SaltyCustoms itself had a bit of an upgrade recently.
“Now we have an online procurement platform that we created for companies that we work with to log on and select the products that they want to produce for their staff on their own,” he said.
“For example, Amazon has 15,000 employees just in Southeast Asia alone. They always have an issue with choosing for the sizes and shipping to which office.”
“So, with our platform we can actually track exactly how many of their staff are sized S, how many are sized M and once they’ve done customising everything, our company backend will receive the total tally of the orders and we’ll produce it and ship it to them exactly so they don’t have to worry about any wastage as well.”
Grab and Amazon are just some of the clients he named that are already using the new system.
Meet SaltyCustoms’ sister brand, Yeefu
“This is the first of its kind in the ASEAN region and basically what we do is we enable influencers and celebrities to sell meaningful merchandise to their fans globally,” King told us of Yeefu’s operating system.
“It’s a platform that uses data to design the merchandise for these influencers and takes care of the manufacturing and fulfilment for them, and then we do a profit share with them.”
Furthermore, this collaboration benefits several charitable organisations such as Teach For Malaysia, OrphanCare and Dialogue In The Dark, said King.
Some of the influencers Yeefu is working with are EPICISM, HAN and Pinda Panda, with the former two having launched their merchandise sales.
2,000 pieces of merchandise from EPICISM through Yeefu were sold in the duration of a week, bringing in about RM120,000 in total which was a record for Youtuber and influencer merchandise in Malaysia, according to King.
The merchandise is of limited edition and there’s a countdown timer for 10 days that he refers to as a campaign. Once the countdown reaches 0, fans can never buy the merchandise again.
“This also helps us to reduce the waste that people produce in the world because everybody’s order is made-to-order, so whatever that they click and they buy, we know the exact sizes and we’ll produce exactly that amount,” King said.
What happened to Launch?
Launch was a project that King had been excited about in 2017 where users would be able to design and sell t-shirts without upfront costs.
However, it wasn’t long-lived. “Back then the infrastructure didn’t allow for this to happen so smoothly yet. Now, you can do it. Each t-shirt, for 10 pieces, you can attain it for below RM20.”
“So, last time it was very expensive and I couldn’t find a way to do it, but I’ve just managed to find a way to get this done,” King said.
“It’s not called Launch anymore, we have a different name for it, but it’s still a work in progress,” he continued.
He calls the new project “ground-breaking” as users will be able to design a t-shirt online in under a minute and have it shipped out in 10 days or less.
“We’re all very, very excited because it’s been a long time coming, it’ll be 10 years for us in this industry next year and in 2013, we were recognised as revolutionising the t-shirt industry.”
Doobie 2.0 and changes in industry trends
“Doobie is going to see a comeback real soon,” King said, “It had 1 million downloads globally and we didn’t have enough resources to continue running it. It was a very tough time for me.”
However, “Doobie 2.0 will be up and running in the coming months and people can take a picture and instantly print a t-shirt easily.”
On what changes he’s noticed in the industry, King shared, “I think customers are already quite used to the fact that we bring quality, fit and design onto the table. When we started the business, these were lacking.”
Once they managed to provide those 3 things with their products, cases and deals started coming in.
“But now the customers, when they buy something from SaltyCustoms or anywhere else, they expect these to come in the package.”
“So, the innovation here doesn’t lie in the products alone anymore—it needs to come in the form of technology and that’s where SaltyCustoms’ ordering platform comes into play.”
Featured Image Credit: Picture shared by King, from Malaysia Tatler here.