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Sharing beauty with the world

Sharing beauty with the world
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Sharing beauty with the world
Siobhan Stirling - Sharp Minds Communications by Siobhan Stirling - Sharp Minds Communications
Owner/Director - Sharp Minds Communications Ltd

Souvenirs are almost a must have whenever you go off to a new country. But what if you took it a bit further and decided to ship a 20-foot container back home and start a business around it instead? Brothers James and Darren Benge of KayuKraft , based at our Greenway Business Centre in Harlow, did just that.

Chasing their dreams
 

KayuKraft (Kayu is the Indonesian word for wood) source bespoke, hand-crafted furniture, woodcraft, stoneware and other items from Indonesia and sell them on in the UK. Co-founder James Benge said: ‘My brother Darren lived in Malaysia and frequently visited Bali. Darren loved the products and bespoke furniture available and told me about them. I then visited Bali with Darren and saw for myself the marvellous furniture being produced. We both dreamt of shipping some home to sell until Darren was set to leave Malaysia and move to Ireland. That’s when we took the plunge and shipped a 20-foot container home. We take pride in bringing the quality furniture produced in Asia back to the UK for everyone to enjoy at a reasonable price.’ 

Growing with CapitalSpace  

Like many of our customers, it’s the added facilities that come with our business accommodation that attracted KayuKraft to CapitalSpace: ‘We has been operating from a self-storage facility before we moved into Greenway Business Centre. Since day one, we have been impressed with the facilities. We use the meeting rooms to conduct our business with customers and the kitchen is an obvious must! 

‘Since we’ve been at CapitalSpace, we’ve been able to show off our products to people as we have an open studio. This has directly led to an increase in sales and gives us greater confidence in conducting business meetings with partners and customers to further grow our amazing business. We aim to move into a workshop when one becomes available. We have a new shipment arriving in the summer and the large shutters will really help when loading and offloading our six-and-a-half-foot mahogany scorpion chairs! One thing is for sure, now we are with CapitalSpace, we will not be leaving!’ 

Protecting the environment  

As well as building their customer database and increasing KayuKraft’s brand awareness, they are committed to being ethical: ‘The way we run our business is very important to us. In the next five years we aim to cut plastic out of our business completely. We are committed to protecting the environment and ensuring health and safety for our employees, customers and the global communities where we operate. We only purchase furniture from fully licensed manufacturers, where all wood used is sustainable and legally produced. 

‘Our success is measured on how many people we can reach in the UK and Europe. We aim to make it easy to buy bespoke, one-off products that were once hard to source from Indonesia. Our suppliers have expressed their gratitude in bringing their ‘works of art’ to the everyday customer in the UK and Europe. Our success will also be measured on how we operate, as it is our mission to run our business in a socially responsible and ethical manner.’ 

Now more than ever there is demand for companies like KayuKraft that are devoted to protecting the environment. We’re looking forward to KayuKraft’s expansion with us and seeing where they take their business next.  

To find out how Capital Space business premises could benefit your growing business,

call 0800 107 3667