“Mma Ramotswe sighed. ‘We are all tempted, Mma. We are all tempted when it comes to cake.’
That is true,’ said Mma Popkwane sadly. ‘There are many temptations in this life, but cake is probably one of the biggest of them.”
Alexander McCall Smith, In the Company of Cheerful Ladies
Baking, Designing, Decorating, Icing, Packaging and Delivering – these are just a few tasks carried out by Panari Bakery. However what is truly special is what they finally create, read on and you will soon see why.
What inspired or motivated you to become a Cake Designer/Baker?
I would say my Mum, inspired me. Growing up in our household meant a lot of baking. Mum was always making special and unique treats that caught my attention and smelt great. Gradually, I started to bake as a hobby and things grew from there.
Tell us about a day in the life of a Cake Designer/Baker
Our day starts early, at 5.00am; we bake cakes, design and prepare the decorations, ice the cakes and package them for delivery. In between this we take order and enquiries. These activities keep us quite busy; sometimes we stay late to make sure each cake is done to our client's specifications.
What are the advantages of working for yourself?
I get to control/plan my time and my day. Make important decisions, choose and direct who I work with and I have room to be creative and imaginative. I'm responsible for my own future and it pays!
What are the disadvantages of working for yourself?
I often have to work very long hours and have very few paid vacations and when there is a problem, I'm financially responsible for it.
What has been your greatest challenge so far?
Finding reliable, professional staff.
What are your greatest achievements?
Moving from a small kitchenette to an industrial unit and raising capital to set it up.
How do you ensure work life balance?
I work hard during the week and relax over the weekend.
Who are your customers?
Friends, family, anyone who wants a nice and unique cake.
What advice would you give to someone starting a business?
Stay focused, disciplined and motivated. Find a mentor if possible.
Name one thing that you could not live without in your business.
My computer, it's amazing what you can do with it. Shop, sell, play, create, communicate, etc. I simply couldn't operate without it.
What is your favourite or most popular product/service?
Our cake tasting sessions. it allows me to meet our clients in person and show them our products, bakery and our friendly staff.
What is your ultimate goal - and has this changed from when you started?
For Panari to become a popular household luxury cake brand. This goal hasn't changed.
Does the internet help you in spreading the word about your business?
The internet has helped immensely as we don't have the usual high street store. Our clients can shop 24 hours of the day and more customers are finding us online.
How big a role does Social Media play in your business?
Social Media plays a huge role in our business, we get to interact on a personal level with old clients and also attract new ones.
If you are looking for that unique custom made cake to really make an occasion memorable you can contact Panari via their Website.