The Register talks to CEO Thomas Dietz about managing a thriving business.
Food kit company Woop landed itself the Supreme Award at the Westpac Auckland Business Awards last month following a successful year of sales.
Food boxes are a competitive market nowadays, with consumers looking for less time consuming ways to prepare their meals. Brands like Hello Fresh and My Food Bag have gained a mass of subscribers and many other companies have decided to jump on the bandwagon.
Kiwi company Woop, which launched over four years ago, has experienced significant growth in the past 12 months and are one of the success stories from the height of the Covid-19 Lockdowns, where demand for their service was high.
CEO Thomas Dietz says he has always been fascinated by trying to solve one problem for busy people; how to give them more time to do the things they love. With this in mind, he designed Woop to contain pre-prepared food, leaving the consumer with only the cooking to do.
“Woop is for busy professionals who want to spend more time doing the things they love. It includes cooking, but not necessary peeling and dicing potatoes or pumpkin every night. So we do all the hard work for them in advance.”
“We dice vegetables and hand make delicious sauces and dressings so that our customers can create moments of magic every night.”
Bringing the best recipes from around the world, paired with New Zealand’s fresh produce, Woop has received plenty of praise and recommendation by its subscribers. Dietz says half of the company’s growth is linked to word of mouth.
“We don’t have the marketing budget of the two other players in the market, but we’re very proud to have created lots of jobs and moments of happiness for both our team and our customers. We now deliver hundreds of thousands of meals every month, all across New Zealand’s major cities.”
Alike to other businesses, Covid brought a lot of pressure to the Woop team and a ‘survive and thrive’ strategy was implemented. Demand for food boxes was higher than ever before and in the space of two weeks they doubled the number of food deliveries and recruited 39 new staff members.
“The Woop team worked extremely hard, leaving their own bubbles every day, working very long hours with a high level of protective equipment to ensure we could allow our customers to stay safe at home.”
“We also brought some elements of fun, delivering cocktail kits for online cocktail masterclasses, adding surprises in boxes (baking kits, cheese…) and entertainment books for children, that the adults loved as well.”
The hard work demonstrated by Dietz and his team has not gone unnoticed with Woop winning several awards over the last few years. The food kit company has won the Best Emerging Business award, the fastest growing food business in New Zealand through Deloitte Fast 50, and has recently received the Auckland Supreme Business Excellence Award.
“Winning the Auckland Supreme Business Excellence Award was an amazing acknowledgement for the remarkable work accomplished by the team over the last 5 years.”
When asking Dietz what advice he would give to others in the industry, he explained he much prefers sharing mistakes and what he has learnt from them.
“I’m a member of Entrepreneurs Organisation, an amazing organisation which has 14,000 members around the world, and 100 in New Zealand. One of the principles we share: we never give advice but always share our own experiences. I love this principle and try to live by it.”