The 28-year-old started the business with a snack subscription during SHN, making a profit


She served a notice of stay at home and was locked in her hotel room and had nowhere to go. Madelene Eng, 28, then executive director of partnerships and business cooperation in New York, had just flown away and felt restless.

It was in March 2020. She returned because Covid-19 was getting serious and her father was pressuring her to return home to Singapore.

As she rested idle in her hotel room, Madelene suddenly craved snacks she could eat, so she went online in search. To her surprise, there were limited options as most stores only sell their individual brands.

Then she was struck by the idea – why not start a business by selling boxes of various snacks to people who are “stuck” like her?

The founder and CEO of the MUNCHEES snack subscription service has not looked back since. She left her job at the Big Apple to travel the less traveled route.

Returning from New York, Madelene stumbled upon the idea of ​​a subscription to a box of snacks / Image credited to: Vulcan Post

A profitable job in less than 12 months

Madelene officially started its business in June last year. In just 12 months, its business has achieved profitability and has since served large clients such as DBS, Mediacorp, GovTech and the Ministry of Education.

It sells works from home snacks and remote team snacks using a subscription-based method. The snacks rotate every month so customers won’t be bored with the same snacks.

The personal snack box starts at $ 28.50, consists of 12 different snacks and can contain childhood favorites like Paul snacks, Hello Panda, as well as Bee Bee crackers.

There are 12 snacks per personal snack box / Image Credit: Vulcan Post

MUNCHEES also sells snacks to remote teams for companies that want to deliver them to teammates to raise work ethic because people in this period mostly work from home.

It offers snacks from office boxes to companies that need to supply their office pantries, for workers who need to check in.

“Given the amount of hours people spend working each day, I believe the company’s positive work environment and culture is now more crucial than ever. As they say, the biggest asset of the company is its people “, said Madelene.

MUNCHEES customers and hospital staff at Parkway Hospital / Image credit: MUNCHEES

“In order for your employees to get along best, they need to feel their best – and what better way to easily achieve this with some useful snacks to feed themselves during the work day. The offer of the subscription model enables that in the most incomparable and flawless way, “she said.

Companies also recognize this importance, as Madelene said the majority of MUNCHEES orders come from corporations that send their teams and staff home with personal boxes.

Healthy options are a natural choice

When she created the company, Madelene decided to offer wellness snacks instead of all kinds of snacks to make customers feel safe eating them without worrying about health risks.

Snack boxes are “healthier” because they do not contain monosodium glutamate (MSG), flavor enhancers, artificial sweeteners and trans fats, said the executive director of MUNCHEES.

The boxes are also curated to provide a variety of snack options. There are healthier snacks that are organic, natural and allergen free.

Healthier snacks that are organic and completely natural / Image credit: MUNCHEES, Vulcan Post

Customers do not choose snacks that go in boxes. “Part of the value and excitement of receiving a MUNCHEES box whether it’s in person or from the office is that it’s always a surprise and delight, allowing recipients to discover new snacks,” she explained.

MUNCHEES delivers to all areas of Singapore and uses third-party courier services to send orders. It also sends them to foreign customers.

Local support

While curating her snack boxes, Madelene wanted to support local businesses that are also going through a pandemic, so she included local Singaporean snack brands like Amazin ’Grace, Tong Garden and Natureally.

Singaporeans have accepted the concept well, and Madelene said the business is currently positive in cash flow.

MUNCHEES delivers to its clients in all parts of Singapore / Image credit: MUNCHEES, Vulcan Post

Sharing one of the most tedious moments during the business, it was when, in the third month of the business, a large order suddenly arrived: a large order of 450 snack boxes for Ubisoft Singapore. Madelene had to frantically ask for all the help she could get to deliver the order to the client. She had to measure time and friends with a rope to cope with the sudden onslaught.

Although Madelene is currently running the business completely on her own, she is ready to operate the ship with more hands on deck.

“Growth plans will really depend on the current pandemic situation, but the first step will definitely be to start building a team – which I am now actively working on,” she shared.

E-commerce is a key content pillar for the Vulcan Post. You can follow our e-commerce reporting here.

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Credits for featured images: MUNCHEES, Vulcan Post

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