Talking to Naimran Yunus; The Founder of Rumah Abang Jamil and NikahSatu on Capturing the Blue Ocean Wedding Services Market

Naimran Yunus, is the founder/Product and Brand Architect of NikahSatu, Rumah Abang Jamil, and Malas Furniture. NikahSatu, a technology company backed by 500 Global is a digital platform that enables users to find the best wedding deals. Based in Kuantan,

by YouthOS

Talking to Naimran Yunus; The Founder of Rumah Abang Jamil and NikahSatu on Capturing the Blue Ocean Wedding Services Market


Naimran Yunus who previously founded a wedding card and gift business,
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Naimran Yunus, the founder/Product and Brand Architect of NikahSatu, Rumah Abang Jamil, and Malas Furniture, offers an interesting analogy for defining the Blue Ocean Market. “Imagine going out for a fishing trip; you would want to cast your rod in a place where there aren't many fishermen. These “Lubuk” are usually hidden, and you need to put in some effort to find them.” NikahSatu, a technology company backed by 500 Global (the same guys that backed Grab, Tokopedia and Carsome), is a digital platform that enables users to find the best wedding deals. Based in Kuantan, they started their company just before the COVID-19 lockdown and managed to capture a large market share during the recovery period. Today, they serve more than 1000 weddings annually, with the number growing rapidly. A recent market research by WeddingWire highlighted that the wedding services market is projected to reach $325 billion globally by 2027, with digital platforms like NikahSatu driving significant growth in the industry.

Carving a Niche: Identifying Profitable Spaces Within the Market

Insights on the wedding market by The Business Research Company

Founded by a group of designers, the wedding industry was initially alien to them. However, they were well aware of one fact: the most expensive aspect of a wedding is often the wedding planner. Many average couples can't afford to hire one, and some rely on bridal shops to manage and plan their weddings, often recouping the cost of their "free" service by marking up prices on each item procured. This premium service is not accessible to everyone, until NikahSatu was founded. The Asia Pacific region owns 40% of the trillion-dollar global wedding services market, and in Malaysia, the industry generates around RM7 billion (USD 1.5 billion), playing a pivotal role in the Malaysian tourism strategy by promoting cultural diversity. According to a report by IBISWorld, the wedding services industry is expected to grow at an annual rate of 3.3% from 2022 to 2027, driven by increasing disposable incomes and changing consumer preferences.

Kicking of Matrimony Efficiently Using Technology

NikahSatu website’s focus on curating deals based on location.

Getting married is a complex affair. Over 200,000 couples get married every year, yet most are unaware of the standard process for matrimony due to information disparity. NikahSatu enables future newlyweds to have an efficient marriage, acting as a personal wedding planner that streamlines event management and enhances the overall experience. The best part is that everything is virtual, eliminating time-consuming meetings about floral varieties or awkward conversations with future in-laws. The Knot Worldwide found that 71% of couples in 2022 used some form of digital platform or app to plan their weddings, highlighting the growing trend of tech-driven solutions in the wedding industry. NikahSatu's team of wedding experts manages everything from start to finish, aiming to democratize the convenience of wedding planners for the average couple by providing end-to-end wedding management services powered by technology.

Elevating the Wedding Experience: Crafting an End-to-End Journey for Stakeholders

How NikahSatu conveniently help their customer to make decision.

Most families spend between RM20,000 to RM50,000 per ceremony, a significant investment decision for each family member. NikahSatu makes it convenient to make these high-ticket decisions by ensuring that every wedding stakeholder is covered. For parents, transparent and affordable pricing is offered, allowing them to pay what they want and add more requirements as needed. Couples are provided with a checklist and an account manager to assist them with pre and post-event tasks, from designing wedding cards to receiving wedding photos shortly after the event. Additionally, NikahSatu manages food, wedding rehearsals, and the flow of the entire wedding from start to finish, even providing a team of local armed forces to assist with parking.

Redefining Tradition: Scaling Up Culture with the Malaysian Home Wedding

A virtual tour of Rumah Abang Jamil Kota Masai

With the growth of the wedding industry post-COVID, a trend emerged in their business. One of their biggest challenges was the uncontrollable nature of wedding venue providers, who often managed venues as event spaces. To address this gap and capitalize on the opportunity, they ventured into the wedding space provider business with Rumah Abang Jamil. Traditionally, weddings in Malaysia take place at the homes of parents, where each part of the house is transformed into functional spaces for events. In designing the wedding space, each area is designed as if it were a traditional Malay house, with a small air-conditioned area for the ceremony and a large open-air eating area for guests. With more than 15 Rumah Abang Jamil locations across major cities in Malaysia, they aim to help urban dwellers relive memories of a traditional Malay wedding in a village setting.

Strategic Branding: Doubling Down on a Niche Market

Madu Tiga is a top rated satirical comedy by P. Ramlee

Despite the playful nature of the brand, every aspect is planned to capture their market segment. "Rumah Abang Jamil" is a reference to P. Ramlee's popular Malay satirical comedy masterpiece from the 1950s, "Madu Tiga," where Abang Jamil, the main character played by P. Ramlee, marries three different wives. They strategically leverage the character's meme-like nature and the name's association with polygamy to capture their segment's attention, creating virality with just a name. Targeting only the Malay community, they refuse to cater to other market segments, aiming to become experts in one. They strategically choose locations where there are more than 100,000 Malay households, with each venue uniquely designed to resemble a traditional Malay house, ensuring consistency in the look and feel of their wedding venues.

The Game of Wedding Thrones: Competing with Precision in the Wedding Industry

In addition to competing with platforms such as Nuren Group and Wedding Market, they also compete with large wedding venue providers such as Bizmilla. Their secret sauce lies in their precision of execution and efficiency in planning weddings. While their competitors focus on qualitative values such as beauty and aesthetics, NikahSatu adopts a more quantitative approach, focusing less on dollars and cents and more on hours and minutes. To ensure there is market demand before finalizing any location, they pre-launch venues and request booking fees, enabling them to maintain a healthy cash flow. Customers who pay in advance receive significant discounts, encouraging most customers to opt for full payment rather than a RM2000 (USD 500) deposit.

Name of The Game: Being Really Good at One Market Segment offers handcrafted luxury in chairs and sofas for a refined and modern home using locally sourced wood.

They have now become experts in the M40 Malay market segment, with a deep understanding of consumer behavior, spending habits, and trending demands. Moving forward, they are branching out of the wedding industry to help newlyweds furnish their homes with functional furniture company called Malas Furniture. Inspired by the Malaysian 1950s era, they are reimagining the feeling of coming home from work. Designed as an extension product for their current customer base, they are confident that their ergonomic chairs, made from natural materials such as teak and rattan, will sell and grow into a profitable business unit.