F&B

It Took A 7-Figure Sum To Launch This Publika Co-Baking Studio With iPads As Instructors

Author’s Blurb: I never understood why people see baking as a fun activity. Personally, I’ve always found baking pretty stressful and expensive, since I’d have to buy the ingredients and sometimes extra tools, make a mess in my kitchen, and clean it up. Even if a recipe says it takes an hour to make, I’d probably be spending the whole day on the project.

At Bakebe, a newly-launched co-baking studio that originates from Hong Kong, you’re not supposed to worry about all that.

The only thing you’ll have to do here is show up, choose your project, and start baking with their in-house app. 

It was built with a simple concept in mind: the rewarding feeling of creating something with our own two hands that can’t be earned any other way.

That’s according to Bakebe’s founder, Venus Chi in Hong Kong. 

Weighing Out The Brand

The baking studio has a large spacious countertop to bake on / Image Credit: Bakebe

The concept of learning how to bake from an app is a familiar one to us, as we’ve written about Bake’in before.

However, their social media pages have been inactive since January and our enquiries went unseen and unanswered.

This has led us to believe that Bake’in is not currently operational and hasn’t been for a while now.

Thus, Bakebe has come in at an opportune time.

Instead of positioning themselves as a baking school, Bakebe is branding themselves as a hangout-spot for leisure activities, much like karaoke or going to the movies.

“In Malaysia, if you notice, there’s really not many places that you would go for a weekend hangout, hence Bakebe came by,” said a representative from Bakebe’s Malaysian team.

“Regardless of family bonding, couples’ outing or a girls’ tea session, Bakebe would be able to cater for it.”

Editor’s Note: Parts of the above paragraph have been edited to reflect greater accuracy of the statement.

The opening ceremony on the day of Bakebe’s launch / Image Credit: Bakebe

And so their decision to open up Bakebe on the ground floor of Publika was a deliberate one.

“This lot is strategic in a way that it’s accessible in the mall and from the roadside too.”

“It increases the brand exposure and with the design of our store, it catches everyone’s eyes as they drive and walk past the mall,” he said.

No Shame Coming Empty-Handed

The moment you check in to the studio, you will be handed an iPad with the BakeBe App. 

Here, you can choose what you want to bake from the App, grab an apron and be virtually guided from beginning to end without needing the aid of an instructor.

All the tools and ingredients you need will be available and provided.

All the tools you’d need are provided / Image Credit: Bakebe

The team put in a 7-figure capital into the business to equip customers with all the tools, ingredients, and technology.

The studio is able to accommodate 38 to 40 pax at a time and around 21 pax with social distancing in place.

Bakebe’s representative said that the MCO was pretty much a blessing in disguise for the team too, as it gave them an additional 3 months to relook into their business strategy before launching.

“Things are changing and if we don’t adapt to the new changes, the business won’t be sustainable,” he said.

Remember when everyone started baking while stuck at home?

This could well work in Bakebe’s favour as they now have an audience of amateurs with a newfound interest in baking.

“It just seems like the right thing to do and a perfect timing,” he said.

Everyone Gets A Slice

Bakebe stands by the claim that everyone can bake, even those with no experience.

They have projects that cater to different levels of difficulty. So even if you’re an avid baker, you might still be able to find a challenge.

While you could go there solo, baking projects are also meant for collaboration.

Some recipes can accommodate up to 7 people to bake a single cake.

You can make a mess without needing to clean up after yourself / Image Credit: Bakebe

So if you’re going there for a teambuilding activity, perhaps you could pretend to be in an episode of Nailed It (a show on Netflix’s where amateur home bakers try to recreate edible masterpieces).

Prices for each baking project can range between RM150 to RM250.

They also offer membership packages ranging up to RM3,200 (for 20 projects), for those who are keen on coming back for more.

Bakebe is hoping to break even in a couple of years to give them the confidence that the studio will be a success in Malaysia.

Bottom Line: Looking at Bakebe’s prices, I think it’s actually something I would try. Though it can’t guarantee that anything coming out from the oven is going be perfect, if I were to gather some friends who are decent bakers, it should be a lot of fun.

  • You can find out more about Bakebe here.
  • You can read more about other Malaysian startups here.

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