Next time you feel that urge to eat cake, resist the temptation to walk into the nearest coffee franchise for that depressingly-stale brownie. There’s an army of bakers in the city furiously whipping up fresh and innovative bakes – and there is now a way for you to reach them.
In the capital, bakebox.in, launched in August, delivers a selection of goodies from a new baker every month. This is how it works: you log into to the website, and if you like the look of the baker of the month and menu on offer, you sign up for a bakebox that month. In the last weekend of the month, you get your goody bag delivered to your doorstep and pay cash on delivery—it’s a standard Rs.850—every month, every baker; and customers sign up on a per month basis.
This month’s baker is the Gurgaon-based kitchen Cake Away, which offers in its goody bag a slice of flourless fudge cake, two truffle brownies, four wholewheat oatmeal cookies, two walnut caramel bars, one slice of date and walnut cake, and a set of six mini cupcakes (two red velvet, two dark chocolate, two butterfly). Last month it was For the Love of Cake, located in Greater Kailash in south Delhi.
Bakebox is the brain child of the UK-born Jennifer Duthie, who was inspired to start an enterprise in the subscription commerce space after attending the Top Drawer conference in London this January.
“I attended a seminar which was about how the next big thing in e-commerce is subscription commerce. For instance, there’s a company in the US which for $25 every month posts to your home a package of Japanese sweets; and another one that posts a selection of sample-sized beauty products for $25 each month,” she says. “The principal basically works in areas where the customers are interested and enthralled by a particular product but don’t know what to choose, and how,” she says.
Duthie, along with the rest of the team Wolf Zech, Gaurav Chugh and summer interns Reuben Noronha and Harshit Maloo, bounced around a few ideas until they decided to capture the baking market in Delhi.
“With the kind of private bakers in the capital – many home-based, some in small kitchens, who don’t have the time to market themselves, we decided that this would be it,” she adds. The bakebox team was never sure about how it would turn out and kickstarted with a Facebook page which received enormously encouraging responses. In the first two weeks of their take-off, they received 45 orders, and their list of bakers has gone up to over 40 bakers.
“The concept works for bakers – it means there’s no wastage because things are ordered well in advance. They don’t have to think about advertising, or marketing or delivery,” says Duthie. Customers also love the concept, because they love the element of surprise that comes with discovering new bakers that they otherwise would not have known about. Plus everything is incredibly fresh. “Most baked goods sold at coffee shops or even five-star hotels have usually been to the deep-freezer and de-frosted a few times before they reach you. You’ll never want to go back to those cakes again,” she says.
In future, bakebox also plans family boxes, and single boxes. They also plan on a dog bakebox with goodies for your pooch.