These three Buddies Created S’pore’s First Merchandising Machine For Wagyu Beef

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Have you ever had a craving for Wagyu beef or Shabu Shabu in the wee hours of the night?

Singaporeans Mervin Tham, Johnson Ng, and Sean Goh once longed for the decadent meat in the middle of the night, but realized there was no way they could buy it.

No restaurants were open at this point and it would be at least a day for deliveries to arrive.

The trio of Wagyu lovers were certain they weren’t the only Singaporeans facing this problem.

Then they had to think about how to always offer quality cuts of beef to Singaporeans who crave a quick beef solution.

This led to the birth of EasyMeat SG – a local startup that operates vending machines selling Australian Wagyu beef.

Singapore’s first Wagyu vending machine

Singapore already has a wide variety of vending machines selling products from free samples to face masks.

However, Johnson told Vulcan Post that EasyMeat’s vending machines will be the first in Singapore to dispense fresh meat.

Photo credit: EasyMeat SG

A 200g steak costs S $ 25, while 250g sliced ​​meat for Shabu Shabu sets you back by S $ 19.

The co-founder shared that after the meat is cut, it will be frozen to make sure it’s well preserved. All of the meat is also individually vacuum packed to minimize exposure to the elements.

The temperatures in the machine are also very important, and the team ensures that the cold chain is maintained at all times so that the frozen meat gets safely to the dining tables.

EasyMeat SG vending machine Wagyu beefPhoto credit: EasyMeat SG

Despite her dedication to the freshness of the meat, Johnson said the team has seen many skeptics believe frozen meat is not fresh.

The biggest fear for us at the beginning was whether people would buy premium meat from a vending machine.

Johnson Ng, co-founder of EasyMeat SG

“The biggest fear for us at the beginning was whether people would buy premium meat from a machine,” said Johnson.

When conducting market research through interviews, the team received mixed responses from respondents.

They decided to take a leap in confidence anyway when they realized there was a market for their products when they noticed customers were buying at 3am, which confirmed the problem they wanted to solve at the beginning.

Still, educating customers and correcting myths and misunderstandings remains an important and difficult task for the three co-founders.

Ready to use in just two months

EasyMeat SG founder EasyMeat SG founding team / Photo credit: EasyMeat SG

Starting a business is never easy, and this is even more true of the EasyMeat co-founders who run the startup in addition to their full-time jobs.

“We do everything,” said the co-founders openly when asked which of their individual roles in the startup they had.

They believe the quick start of their first machine is a testament to their teamwork. The first vending machine was deployed in November 2020, less than two months after the first idea.

It was like putting a puzzle together in a short amount of time. We have faced obstacles both large and small, and it takes a lot of trust, collaboration and teamwork.

Johnson Ng, co-founder of EasyMeat SG

By mid-December of last year, EasyMeat had two more machines on the market and is well on the way to launching another five before the upcoming Chinese New Year.

The team plans to expand to at least 10 to 15 machines by the end of 2021.

Their machines are currently located in the Sembawang Shopping Center, Simon Plaza and Thomson Plaza.

A new online shop will also be unveiled this month to integrate the EasyMeat offline and online experience.

According to Mervin, the online store will serve as a complement to the vending machines and will provide the team with data on which products customers prefer.

In the long term, the co-founders’ goal is to make Wagyu beef and other types of premium meat available to everyone, whenever and whenever they need it.

Ideally, we would like our vending machines to cover the island just like the supermarkets, so everyone has access to premium meat.

Sean Goh, co-founder of EasyMeat SG

Selected image source: EasyMeat SG

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