Fauzi or better known as Pakcik kopikupi had spent years in plantation industry since 1992. He worked as General Manager Plantation in Sorong, Papua Barat Indonesia for the last 5 years before he decided to quit and sell coffee out from his car boot.
Fauzi the owner of kopikupi likes to go to coffee stalls and simple cafes to taste the variety of Indonesian coffee
It all started when he worked in Sorong, Papua Barat Indonesia. Fauzi like to patronise roadside coffee stalls and simple cafes during weekends to taste the variety of Indonesian coffee. He then had the idea of opening up a cafe – serving high-quality coffee at affordable prices.
Although he had 5-figure salary job, but he couldn’t spend time with his family while working in Indonesia. And it made him rethink his career.
Then, he decided to quit his job to try something new which is coffee business. For Fauzi, if he failed in the new business venture, he can always go back and work in the plantation industry.
Kopikupi was founded in January 2020
However, it wasn’t easy for him. Being a coffee enthusiast wasn’t enough to start a business. He first had to learn how to make it. When he came back to Malaysia, he bought a cheap espresso machine to operate the car boot cafe. He then upgraded to a mid-range espresso machine and he finally had the confidence to invest in the commercial espresso machine.
It cost him over RM 20,000 to run the business as he had to buy the espresso machine, generator to provide electricity, the coffee grinder and all the internal modifications for his car.
As someone who had no experience in running a coffee cafe, he learned by talking with Indonesian coffee brewers he’d met over his coffee adventures. He then attended basic barista training course too.
While waiting for his car being modified into a mobile cafe, Fauzi started the coffee business by offering his high-quality coffee to neighbours and friends. After his car was ready, he then tried to find a good location.
His coffee is priced between RM3 to RM10
The business was slow at first due to a lack of publicity. Previously, he could only sell 10-20 cups a day and 30 cups on the weekends and his earnings were just enough to pay his utility bills. But, Fauzi stayed positive and he had regular loyal customers.
Fauzi started promoting kopikupi products more heavily by posting up content of his freshly roasted beans and basic coffee brewing equipment which gained the attention of coffee enthusiasts.
He is now able to sell 75-125 cups when a reporter covered his story
Sadly, Covid-19 hit his business badly and he had to use his savings to get through month to month. But all were changed when a friend of him shared a few photos of him while he was preparing the coffee and posted it to his WhatsApp group. A reporter from The Star was one of the member in the WhatsApp group and he covered Fauzi’s story. That was the turning point where he is now able to sell 20-30 cups on weekends and 75-125 cups over the weekend.
He now hopes to franchise the concept of car boot cafes and he plans to have at least 3 kopikupi outlets. He wants to promote good quality coffee with affordable village price. Fauzi now runs the business with his daughter, Nadhirah.
Check out his Facebook profile.