Author’s Blurb: Picnics are my favourite kind of dates. But the last time I had one, I had to use a yoga mat and a bunch of tupperwares with finger foods. So, not exactly the most Insta-worthy, aesthetic kinds you’d imagine. Yes, it’s the company that matters at the end of the day, but honestly, who wouldn’t want to be greeted with pretty mats, rattan baskets and plates full of real meals?
Hui Nee and Jiong Kit shared the same sentiments as a couple, except they actually have an aesthetic picnic set and started a whole business out of it.
In 2018, they celebrated Valentine’s Day with a picnic instead of a typical cafe date, which turned out to be one of the most memorable dates they had.
Their picnic date idea caught the attention of their friends, one of whom suggested that they should rent their picnic set to others because of its Insta-worthy appeal.
Realising the absence of this service in Malaysia, they decided to hop on the opportunity to become one of the pioneers of picnic rental services, Daily Sparks.
Making Picnic Dates A Piece Of Cake
The thing with picnics, especially aesthetic ones, is that they take a lot of effort in planning.
You’d have to think about the location, the time, the food, the props, and more.
Sure, you could still DIY or buy the stuff yourself, but let’s be real, how many of us actually have the time for that?
Moreover, picnics are not something people do regularly, so is it really worth it to invest in one picnic set to be used once in a blue moon over and over again?
Hence, Hui Nee and Jiong Kit decided to bring in 6 picnic sets to rent on Daily Sparks to answer that dilemma.
The process of planning one’s picnic is simplified to a single DM on the picnic set of choice, and picking up the set from their place or via Grab, Lalamove, etc.
Once you’re done with your picnic, you can return the set directly to them or via delivery services.
From there, Hui Nee and Jiong Kit will sanitise the returned sets and replace any torn or stained items with new ones.
If you ever need recommendations on your food and location, they’d help with suggestions to further ease your planning for the picnic.
Standing Out From Competition
Though being one of the pioneers can be of advantage to lead in a business, ultimately, it’s how you stay relevant that makes you competitive.
Picnic rental services are not unheard of at this point, and in fact, I’ve noticed many new businesses springing up the last few months on Instagram.
Among the picnic rental services that popped up the last 2-4 months ago in Klang Valley are:
- Picnic Day (July)
- Picnic Perks (August)
- Picnic Wanderlust (August)
- The 90’s Picnic (August)
- Summerjoy (September)
- Skygazing.co (September)
While many of these services have even lower pricings than Daily Sparks, some as low as RM30, their themes don’t stand out as much as Daily Sparks’.
That being said, the breakdown of their picnic sets are as follows:
Recently, Daily Sparks launched a new picnic set that is Malaysian-themed, which is significantly different from the other sets they have.
This set features a batik mat, mangkut bertingkat, kopitiam and mamak cups and plates that you can put your half-boiled eggs, teh C and roti canai on.
Just when you thought it couldn’t get Malaysian enough, they even have props like sompoton, batu seremban and congkak for your amusement.
“For us, authenticity comes first, which is why our sets are always curated from activities that we have enjoyed ourselves,” Hui Nee shared.
Furthermore, with CMCO lingering around indefinitely, many picnic rental services have moved indoors, including Daily Sparks.
However, instead of reusing the same sets they used for outdoors, they introduced a new picnic set for indoors which also comes with a mini toaster and a French press coffee kettle.
COVID-19 Was No Picnic For Their Biz
Before the second CMCO in October, Daily Sparks was experiencing a revenue growth of 30% every month since June.
They are already profitable, and are looking to expand their picnic sets, of which they currently own more than 20 units.
However, the reintroduction of CMCO has disrupted their business due to the restriction of outdoor activities.
In spite of this , Hui Nee and Jiong Kit don’t see this as a drawback but rather a chance for them to channel their focus on aesthetic living, which is the core of their brand.
The launching of the Home Café Toaster Set is just the beginning of their brand recalibration, as they’re planning to sell aesthetic home decor starting with vases and posters.
Daily Sparks’ Home Café Toaster Set won’t be the first and last indoor picnic set either.
They will be launching another indoor picnic set which stars a mini BBQ set that their customers can enjoy indoors as they have a smoke-less charcoal option.
“We hope that Daily Sparks can continuously add sparks to the way people spend their leisure time, be it daily routines, weekends or even special occasions,” said Hui Nee.
Bottom Line: It’s interesting how many picnic rental services popped up in Klang Valley the past few months, given the uncertainty of movement restriction in our country. While I’m grateful for the many options that I can consider, I still admire the originality and innovative business spirit that Daily Sparks employs in their startup.
Featured Image Credit: Hui Nee & Jiong Kit, Founders of Daily Sparks