Striking out on your own and taking a leap of faith to start a business can take a lot of courage, especially with the potential prospect of failure should things not work out as you expect them to. But one advertising executive decided to do exactly that, breaking away from the routine of her nine-to-five to turn passion into her very own venture! Duck down into the basement of Seventeen Mall PJ, and you’ll stumble upon Basket Break, founded and operated by Daphne.
Trading agency briefs for baking recipes
Speaking to Wau Post, Daphne shared that Basket Break was actually a MCO baby, and that the idea came to her during lockdown when she founded the business as a passion project to take her mind off work. Working as a full time in an advertising agency, she managed to sling this business onto her shoulders from Friday to Sunday, balancing both ends with remarkable aplomb.
“Thankfully, I had help from my family members and a family friend. My mom was in charge of the dough while my father, brother and a family friend would help with cross-district door-to-door deliveries”, she said.
Daphne shared that she absolutely enjoyed baking as she thinks that baking for people you care for is a way of showing love. However, baking for customers is a completely different ball game entirely. With that said, adapting to the learning curve was well worth it when she sees how her customers enjoy her baked goods.
Opportunities are meant to be taken
In December 2021, an opportunity to expand her business with a physical store came along. Despite it being one of the hardest things she had to make a decision on, she eventually threw caution to the wind and seized the chance.
With the help of some family funding and personal savings, Basket Break was transitioned from a home owned business to a physical store. Recalling the shift, Daphne mentions that transitioning from a full-time employee to a business owner was hard, as she had to ensure that her business remained sustainable.
“All the profit from sales during MCO went right back into the business. We were very cautious with our budget, sourcing for second-hand equipment and only buying things we found necessary when having a physical store”, she added.
Nothing in life comes without challenges
Prior to opening up a physical store, Daphne revealed that one of the biggest challenges she faced was getting used to the ebb and flows of starting out fresh in the F&B industries.
“There were a lot of SOPs that I needed to learn and on top of that, sourdough fermentation is delicate work and not having a proper baking kitchen definitely made it hard”, she mentioned.
She shared that delivery fees were also a part of her concerns as they were previously based in Puchong. Now that they’ve grown into a micro-bakery, it came with a new set of challenges, chief among which being manpower.
Starting out alone, Daphne realised that the demand for her baked goods increased as time went on, and she knew that help was needed. That being said, when looking for help she would have to make sure that all her baked goods were consistent in terms of quality and she found it difficult to relinquish control.
“It’s hard to let go of something you’ve built alone from scratch but I must say I’m incredibly proud of the 2 bakers that I’ve trained”, adding that she has now fully entrusted her two bakers with working on the prep line.
Take a chance if you can!
As for advice to those who want to venture into the F&B industry, Daphne decided to look back in hindsight at her own nascent journey into the world of F&B business, and said that one should plan ahead when heading into a new venture.
“You should always plan ahead and if you’re stuck in a dilemma, just think about what’s the worst that could happen. If it’s not life-threatening (debt, mental spiraling), you should go for it!”, she said.
What’s more, one should always be open to opportunities. If the opportunity taken doesn’t work out, at least it’s an experience to gain. But perhaps most importantly, Daphne advises prospective entrepreneurs to learn that they cannot please everyone, and that there’s no benefit to taking things too personally.
Future plans and dreams
As for where she plans to take her business in the future, Daphne is currently working to expanding Basket Break and hopefully turn it into a full-fledged café, serving coffee and her mouth-watering pastries.
“I’d love the opportunity to create a mix of beverages, a coffee bar is on the top of the list! Coffee and fresh bakes go hand in hand. Along with a cozy retail corner to feature small handmade goods local businesses would be ideal”, she said.
It’s definitely inspiring to see young artisans like her take on the leap of faith and learning from her journey. If you wish to support her micro-bakery, feel free to visit @basket.break for their menu and order link!
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