06 August 2019   

10 mins read
For many years Katelyn Matheson baked as a hobby inspired by her Grandma Joan’s secret sponge cake recipe. When Katelyn decided to earn some pocket money by selling 150 handmade cupcakes at a local farmers’ market, she didn’t imagine she would soon be the creative director and owner of Cake Creations by Kate, a $1.6 million cupcake empire. We asked Katelyn to share her journey and her thoughts on how committing to a bricks and mortar store has seen her business go from strength to strength.
THE CHALLENGE

Within days of the initial sale of 150 cupcakes at the farmers’ market, Katelyn was soon baking 5,000 cupcakes from her mother’s kitchen and being inundated with orders. With cars lined up in her street waiting to pick up their orders, trestle tables with cupcakes overtaking her mother’s living room and her mother’s patience at breaking point, Katelyn knew her business had outgrown baking in the family home. She knew it was time to open a customer-centric flagship store and a commercial kitchen to help her achieve her goal of growth.

While Katelyn knew she needed more space, the challenge was to identify the right shopping centre in the right location with a big customer base. Although she was worried about how she was going to pay for the store, she was determined to push ahead “when you have a goal in mind, you don’t let anything stop you”.

 One of the biggest challenges for Katelyn was having to wear many different hats and juggle all facets of the business—branding, marketing, creating an e-commerce website, hiring and managing staff and looking after the accounts.

But, she decided not to see obstacles and to look for a supportive landlord that could contribute to and amplify her success.


THE SOLUTION

Katelyn decided to look close to home. As a long-time resident of Point Cook, she decided to invest in her own community.

The first step was opening a pop up store at Stockland Point Cook to test out her business model in a bricks and mortar space. For Katelyn, the pop-up concept in a shopping centre in her local area gave her the confidence that this was the right location with a strong sense of community.

“For an emerging retailer like me, the pop-up store is a fantastic way of getting your foot in the door and testing the market at a very low risk level. It gives you flexibility in trialling locations to find the best possible spot for you.”

On day one of the pop-up store, queues formed before the store opened and Katelyn sold out of cakes within a couple of hours.

The pop-up store was the crucial gateway to a flagship store. Katelyn was open to new ideas and a collaborative relationship with Stockland.

“Stockland gave me all the support I needed with making decisions, recommendations and helped financially with a fitout contribution. Without all the help of my leasing executive Adam, I wouldn’t have been able to tackle this project on my own.”


If you would like to find out more about our casual leasing opportunities you can reach out to us through our online enquiry form.



THE BENEFIT

Stockland Point Cook is located in one of Melbourne’s fastest growing population
corridors and is a social hub for the community with a premier dining precinct and fresh food offering and a broad retail offering.

Katelyn believes that the centre is a great place for people to engage, explore and experience and that it leaves a lasting impression on its customers.

“As I grew up in Point Cook, I am well known in the area so in the early days I had a pre-existing customer base to start off with. Stockland Point Cook is a great location for us as it’s the perfect demographic for my product—families!"

Katelyn believes opening her store in a premium, high traffic site is very valuable.

“We are situated in a high traffic location, which enables us to have great over the counter sales. It is also the perfect space for all of our production, which enables us to provide fresh product daily, in a full commercial kitchen.”


THE OUTCOME

Today, Katelyn has a very successful flagship store in Stockland Point Cook and she thinks it’s the perfect fit for the centre.

“I think Cake Creations is a great addition to Stockland as it’s a small, hand crafted product that people love. It works well for both of us as we bring customers into the centre and we benefit from a strong customer base from the pre-existing foot traffic,” she said.

“It is so special to me as I opened this store at such a young age. When I look at it, I feel immense pride and happiness. I am so happy with the aesthetic of the store—we get comments all the time about how beautiful it is.”

Stockland Point Cook delivers the right ambience and has a good mix of retailers, which makes the centre a more vital part of the community in which it operates.

For now Katelyn will concentrate on growing the Stockland Point Cook store and experiment with more pop up stores around Melbourne.


If you would like to find out more about our casual leasing opportunities you can reach out to us through our online enquiry form.


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