SINGAPORE, Sept 7 — Design sketches cover the table tops like cryptic scrolls. Wires and cables slither out of half-constructed devices with wild abandon. Many heads pore over the plans and prototypes, adding refining touches with every stage
If this sounds like a mad scientist’s laboratory, perhaps the truth isn’t far from it. Even in an industry that worships convenient coffee capsule machines, surely we didn’t need yet another one in the market?
The two co-founders of Morning, a subscription based curator of coffee capsules from roasters around the world, would disagree. Led by Andre Chanco of Yardstick Coffee in the Philippines and Leon Foo of PPP Coffee in Singapore, Morning is launching their own coffee capsule machine named, quite simply, the Morning Machine.
Chanco says, “Given our years in the industry, both Leon and I understood what the roasters wanted to bring out from their coffees while home brewers enjoyed the ritual of brewing and tinkering with different brew methods and recipes.”
The result is a device that is equipped with PID (Proportional Integral Derivative) temperature controls, pressure profiling and also a built-in smart scale. Home baristas can purportedly brew using recipes saved on the machine or create their own recipes using the Morning mobile application.
Part of the fun is in experimenting according to personal preferences, opening a world of possibilities such as brewing other beverages. Try tea capsules, “cold-shot” espressos or single-serve coffee drip bags by using the controls that are built into the Morning Machine.
This magnificent-sounding product isn’t out in the market yet. You could make that happen, though, as one of their Morning Machine Kickstarter backers.
Selecting Kickstarter as their means of crowd-funding had a lot to do with the Morning co-founders’ own familiarity with the platform. Chanco says, “There are many types of Kickstarter projects out there and we have always been fond of the community and we are backers ourselves.”
Several other coffee consumer devices have already been launched by other companies via Kickstarter such as Kompresso, an on-the-go espresso maker by Korean-based Cafflano. Other successful Kickstarter coffee campaigns include Nitro King, Hiku Grinder and Cafelat Robot.
Clearly there was a receptive Kickstarter audience to coffee-centric projects. Funding wasn’t the only reason why Morning turned to Kickstarter though.
Chanco explains, “We have told family, friends and industry peers about the Morning Machine, but the Kickstarter community would validate this idea that we have been building for the past two years.”
For an entrepreneur, Chanco reasons, the crowd-funding platform is a good mix of constructive criticism paired with strong support, particularly of the creative and building process.
He adds, “If we get through and manage to convince enough backers about our idea, then we would have learned about their concerns and also what they appreciated about the Morning Machine before we even ship it out.”
Given the current uncertainty and volatility in the world right now, coupled with keeping operations lean and agile, the Kickstarter campaign allows Morning to remain accountable to their backers while helping to manage their cash flow.
The coffee capsule machine is also a natural progression of the company’s long-term strategy which is heavily influenced by the surge of coffee bean subscriptions as well as reputable coffee roasters encapsulating their best coffees inside a capsule.
In putting these altogether, Morning could capitalise on a relatively untapped way of reaching a new coffee drinking segment.
Chanco explains, “Morning has always been about the ecosystem — the marketplace, coffee drinkers, coffee roasters and now the Morning Machine will complete that puzzle. Great coffee starts with high quality ingredients, which are the capsules which we curate on the marketplace.”
The capsules are but the first part of the equation. The Morning Machine will allow roasters to set their recipes for each coffee. Home brewers are not left out; they will be able manipulate the brew parameters to suit their own taste.
“As those two come together,” Chanco notes, “our next steps would be to build the community that we identify with and that’s with the home coffee drinkers and the coffee roasters.”
Morning has already been making strides in this direction with their Morning Marketplace that was soft-launched last year in Singapore and Hong Kong. The idea here is to showcase various specialty coffee capsules from coffee roasters around the world including ST. Ali from Australia and The Cupping Room from Hong Kong.
Chanco says, “People are spending more time at home now and are more curious in trying new coffees that they order online. The Morning Machine is the centrepiece of all these different behaviours. It's simple enough to operate, but also allows for barista-approved controls.”
Having more control is part of the appeal, whether you’re a casual coffee capsule user or a serious home barista. Here’s your chance to join the coffee capsule revolution — The Morning Machine is available on Kickstarter from September 1 to September 30, 2020, with a limited early bird discount — and level up your cuppa.
The Morning Machine Kickstarter Campaign