Absolut Chocolat took over the internet by its ‘pour it yourself’ campaign. They were the first to introduce a concept of pouring glistening chocolate sauce over a moist and fluffy chocolate cake. Since the video campaign released, it garnered thousands of views and people started to buy and like the brand – Absolut Chocolat. But, who’s the person behind the fun and creative brand?
Ben Ali and Nadiyah Shahab – the couple behind the cheeky and creative brand
Co-founders, Ben Ali and Nadiyah Shahab started the Absolut Chocolat out of a common love for baking. In just two months of operation, the couple started exporting out their first product which is moist chocolate cakes to the neighbouring countries – Singapore and Brunei. Their achievement doesn’t stop there; in five months, they grew their operations to have over 15 sales agents in every corner of Malaysia.
Absolut Chocolat phenomena
In the recent Republic Mood festival held at the International Trade and Exhibition Center of Malaysia (MiTEC), Absolut Chocolat had accumulated six-figure sales throughout the three-day event. They sold more than 13,000 boxes of cakes thus broke the personal record for the brand. Both Ben Ali and Nadiyah Shahab were shocked with the massive crowd and it was phenomenal.
Currently, Absolut Brands Sdn Bhd offers three flavours of cake; Chocolate, Milk Lava and also Boba Milk Tea. According to Ben Ali, they want to keep the exclusivity of the product noting that each flavour can last in trend for 6 months thus acquire them to be creative to get the hype. The idea came when they realised there are over a thousand of cake brands out there. So in order to be unique and stand out, they need to think of a different concept. Hence, Absolut Chocolat introduced pour-it-yourself and it quickly became the brand identity.
Originally, the couple baked the cakes to save money to get married
The business started when they both wanted to make more money to get married. Nadiyah who loves baking got the idea to sell cakes and who would know the interest started to grow in the business world. Starting with a small operation from renting a sales booth, the couple is now able to rent a two-storey store in Cheras, Kuala Lumpur with a small team to support from marketing to logistics.
Absolut Chocolat sells 400-500 boxes of sliced cakes
At the beginning of the business phase, they both had to do all the processes from baking, packaging and delivering. From just making four cakes, it has grown day by day with almost 200 cakes a day. The couple proud in having all their cakes made by hand and even the sauce is stirred by hand from scratch.
Now, they produce at least 100 to 150 whole cakes per day and 400 to 500 boxes of sliced cakes. Most importantly, all cakes are baked fresh everyday in Kuala Lumpur.
Now, Absolut Chocolat is available in selected petrol stations in Klang Valley
The couple has successfully grew the brand presence in the local market targeting petrol stations. The brand is made available in over 50 Petronas outlets in within the first year of operations and is still growing. They have penetrate in several outlets outside of Klang Valley such as Petronas, Shell, Petron and Caltex and their agents are available all over the country. It is deemed to be a solid strategy to reach a wider market.
Leveraging social media and influencers
Coming from the entertainment industry both are blessed to have a great platform to market the brand. To further strengthen their marketing strategy, both got their celebrity friends to showcase the cakes on social media too. They even got a few influencers to be a part of the campaign as well.
Even our Minister of Youth and Sports Syed Saddiq likes the cake!
Remember when our Minister of Youth and Sports, Syed Saddiq took the initiative to help local entrepreneurs to wider their market target by introducing entrepreneur of the week in the cabinet? Apparently, Absolut Chocolat was selected to be one of the entrepreneurs of the week and Syed Saddiq seemed to be enjoyed the cake. This is what he said according to his Instagram post:
“This is a product that started with only RM50 in capital and has now earned about RM1.5 million within 10 months. This product is sold in around 60 petrol stations”.– Syed Saddiq, Minister of Youth and Sports