So, who is Big Kahuna?
Craig Smith! A trained electrician and personal trainer. After the building trade drastically fell in the recession of 2009, Craig decided he needed a change. With a love for markets, car boots and always wanting his own café or ice cream van, he started his own food stall at a busy market in Liverpool. It took a while to get a pitch at this market, having to pester the Market Manager Paul a few times a week until he eventually gave in!
The first market…
So, the first Saturday came around, and Craig pitched up his little stall and table against the trailers and cafes that had been running for years. At the end of the first day, Craig made a grand total of £30! Knowing that people had come over to try his food filled Craig with a sense of pride and joy, and he liked it! Over the next few weeks Craig experimented with different foods and drinks until his ‘This Weeks Specials’ board appeared. New and regular customers appeared week after week to see what was on offer.
Time to expand…
With his building background, Craig started to get creative and his little stall soon turned into a 20’ x 10’ outdoor café with tables and chairs. Regulars starting coming in to read the morning paper and have a coffee. And now… the ‘BIG KAHUNA’!
What’s in the name?
Big Kahuna was made famous by the film Pulp Fiction, however the idea to use the name for the growing catering company was taken from one of Craig’s previous bosses who used to call himself ‘The Big Kahuna’, meaning, The Boss or The Best. It actually originates from Hawaii, where the name was used to call the champion surfer who no one could beat. Hence, ‘The Big Kahuna Catering Company’.
It doesn’t stop there…
Now with a catchy name and a cool looking stall, the market pitch had grown into a real business. Faced now with a dilemma of running two businesses Craig decided to sell his beloved pitch and concentrate on Big Kahuna Huts for a while. With the main concentration on designing and building, Kahuna Huts have drastically changed over the years constantly improving quality, build and always having the customer in mind with what they need.
There is still more…
Big Kahuna Caterers is still up and running with weddings, events, and festivals which is one of the main reasons why Kahuna Huts works so well. Craig, being the catering and building, means he has full knowledge of his product and what a customer needs for their stall. Craig offers quality advice and has helped many new businesses on their road to street food success.
Caterer’s Club Discount
Craig is very kindly offering all Caterer’s Club members a 10% discount on any of his huts (sale or hire). To make the most of this fantastic offer, simply quote ‘Caterers16’ when you place an order on 0333 772 0328. Click here to visit Craig’s website. Don’t wait long, offer must end 31/03/16.
Craig’s Top Tips
1. Speak to as many people as you can who are in the business, as they love to give advice.
2. Spending your money on the right things is crucial at the beginning. Some things that seem important are just not needed at the start. Although some things you really do need to bite the bullet and fork out for as it pays in the long run and pays from the start. Tip 1 will help on this!
3. A smaller menu is better than a large one. At the start I used to offer a wide range of offerings but then realised people would buy whatever I sold. If something had sold out they would just buy the next item. Honing your menu down to a couple of items will save time, space, waste, increase your profits and you will inevitably be concentrating on making those two products the best you can.
4. I love branding; it is one of the most important parts to your stall. You can have the best burger in the world but you need to attract that initial customer. When you go to a market have you ever noticed that all stalls look the same? You need to make yourself stand out. So many people have asked if I am a franchise based on my branding and look. For me your name and logo is important and when customers are trying to get their initial start-up costs down this is something that I always try and insist is crucial.
5. Be prepared for hard work! This is not for the faint hearted but is one of the most rewarding businesses financially and personally I have done. Setting up your own food stall, selling something your passionate about, people coming back to taste your food and the friends you will meet along the way in this business – there is nothing like it!
We would love to hear from you!
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