Travis and Suzanne Chia are the proud Founders of AlcoholDelivery. They tell us how the business stays on top of the food tech industry.
The founders of AlcoholDelivery are young, but don’t underestimate them just yet. Travis and Suzanne Chia, while under 30 years old, are founders of AlcoholDelivery, an e-commerce platform that delivers alcohol to your doorstep within an hour – chilled.
The platform was brought to life five years ago – with the help of a thousand dollars – when the siblings wanted to address a gap in the alcohol delivery market. Travis and Suzanne have a keen interest in technopreneurship and used to run their own e-commerce sites. Through self-teaching, experimentation and exposure, more than 500,000 bottles of alcohol have been delivered successfully since the AlcoholDelivery’s conception.
It’s one thing to squabble with your sibling at home, but another to enter a dispute over a shared business with your sibling.
“Our parents always told us that we make really good business partners due to our complementary characteristics. We make up for each other’s flaws,” says Suzanne. “We took their advice, gave it a shot, and here we are today. Who knew they were right!”
Despite the inevitable disagreements in running a prosperous food tech service together, read on to find out how the siblings manage to keep their eyes on the prize!
Doyenne: How is it like working with your sibling to create AlcoholDelivery?
Travis: It’s great! We have amazing synergy and similar ideologies. Of course, there are times when we debate about business decisions but we both understand that to achieve something great, an even greater effort is required.
“Being focused on one thing is better than trying a few things all at once; no matter how much potential each of them may have. Starting a business and initiating a new idea is simple. However, keeping things going and sustainable, constantly achieving greater heights is far, far tougher.”
D: How did a passion project turn into a full-time business?
Suzanne: Back when we first started, there weren’t many on-demand alcohol delivery services and we thought we could do better. So, we pooled together about a thousand bucks and got our site up quickly to try to push it out to the market.
Soon enough, after a couple of months, orders streamed in and our quantities per Stock Keeping Unit were steadily increasing, and this validated the potential for an on-demand alcohol delivery service here in Singapore.
We invested pretty heavily in digital marketing knowing that they were the key drivers for generating e-commerce sales. When we launched AlcoholDelivery and leveraged the use of Google and Facebook to spread the word, we also came up with a successful referral campaign which raked in over 30,000 organic likes as a result.
D: What are some challenges you’ve faced managing AlcoholDelivery thus far?
S: Delivery riders, definitely. This job position has one of the highest turnover rates in the industry.
Occasionally, we have riders backing out at the last minute, leading to insufficient manpower. This challenge needs to be tackled in order to be able to sustain our one-hour delivery promise. Also, the erratic fluctuations of orders and demand makes it hard to determine the right amount of manpower.
D: How does your service differ from traditional delivery platforms like foodpanda and Deliveroo?
S: As we specialise in alcohol, it allows for services to be more comprehensive. We not only fulfil on-demand deliveries, but also cover various types of events, have mobile bars, and even miscellaneous products such as ice, mixers, ice boxes, bar equipment and drinking games!
D: What are some common misconceptions of the growing food tech industry?
T: It’s not as simple as it seems. The winds of change may not necessarily blow in our favour. The nature of the business is dependent on issues such as governmental policies and consumer behaviour, both of which are highly unpredictable.
D: What do you think is the future of food tech in Singapore and beyond?
S: With our personal experience, we can vouch that Singapore is a great market for incubating and experimenting with food tech start-ups. There is still a lot of room for competition in the industry, be it app-based services or even more niche delivery platforms.
With global platforms expanding their reach into Singapore, I would also say that demand exists for more localised services that taps into Singaporeans’ demands. It’s a very exciting time for techno-preneurs!
D: How do you think you’ve grown as an entrepreneur and a person in general?
T: Through the years, one of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt is that being focused on one thing is better than trying a few things all at once; no matter how much potential each of them may have.
Starting up a business and initiating a new idea is simple. However, keeping things going and sustainable, constantly achieving greater heights is far, far tougher. To achieve this, my mantra has always been “the art of knowing is knowing what to ignore”, which refers to ignoring the setbacks, disappointments, sadness and anger. Knowing the right thing to ignore – be it the personal or business aspects of your life – can make you a better person.
S: I learnt to plan for the long term in terms of finances for the company, as well as the future expansion of AlcoholDelivery. I spend a huge amount of time on my business, and this makes me cherish the quality time spent with my family and loved ones even more.
Having ups and downs in the business has also increased my mental strength. I would focus on getting the issue resolved in the shortest possible time, eliminating anything else that might bring me down.
Q&A with Travis and Suzanne
S: Somersby Apple Cider
T: Yamazaki 12 years
S: Singing, dancing, and engaging in adrenaline-injected activities
T: Going to the gym
S: I play video games
T: I binge watch TV shows and movies, chill out and have a drink, or play video games
Images by AlcoholDelivery
Contact AlcoholDelivery online or via phone (9-2445533 or 9-CHILLED) in advance and choose from a larger variety of drinks as compared to their online menu, receive bulk discounts and other value added services such as calculation of booze required, food catering, venue recommendations, cocktail/theme ideas and more.