Retailer demand grows for Funky Flasks
a port macquarie based company has boomed from selling one range of 500ml flasks at markets to stocking 20 designs of three different products in over 80 retailers across australia.
funky flasks was created two years ago by melissa cuttell who was on the hunt for a flask to buy but found available products looked quite boring so she decided to make her own.
family and friends were so interested in the product that cuttell and her husband gary decided to turn it into a business.
“we’ve been running for two years and we went from running market stalls locally [in our home base at] port macquarie and also in sydney to gauge a reaction to the product and that was very positive, so we took the next step and went to an industry fair,” he says.
after showcasing the product at reed’s sydney trade fair in february, funk flasks went from a market based company stocked in just 14 stores to being sold by more than 80 retailers.
“we went to the reed gift fair and kind of officially launched the product for retail outlets. we already had about 14 retail outlets that we gained through word of mouth and enquiries via our website and from the fair we basically walked away with almost 70 more outlets from the five days we were there.”
funky flasks’ appearance at the event has also led to a distribution deal in new zealand where the product will soon be launched.
“that was pretty much the point where my wife went full time with the business. we have taken on some extra help in the production of the flasks because we make all the covers locally here in australia,” gary explains.
“we just signed [the new zealand] deal in the last couple of weeks and that’s brought even more demand but yeah, we’re handling it well but we’ve also had to look at streamlining some of our processes to help us cope with the volume.”
he believes the reason the flasks are such a hit is because there is nothing else like them available.
“it’s the designs i think, most of the comments we get are around the fact that people have been wanting to buy flasks with some funky designs and there hasn’t been anything on the market so i think we filled a gap we didn’t know existed.”
while melissa and gary work hard to meet demand for their product, the future of its range is in the hand of consumers.
“i think we’ll be looking to extend the range in terms of product and design. [we’re] looking at moving to a coffee mug,” says gary.
“we get asked about coffee mugs a lot. it’s always been based on what our customers want. we’ll continue to listen to our customer’s feedback and extend the range as we go along.”