David Booth (left) delivers the flat meat to Cameron
McQueen (21), a third-year physical education student, of
Hyde St. Photo by Jane Dawber.
University of Otago students David Booth and Harrison
Uffindell were "meating" a need when they launched a delivery
service earlier this year aimed at students.
The pair identified a market for quality meat at an
affordable price in North Dunedin, and it was an opportunity
they "jumped on", Mr Booth said.
Although MeatMail, a subscriber-based home delivery service,
has now wound down for the student year, there were plans to
grow the business and also take it to other cities.
Initially, the law and commerce students saw it as an
opportunity to become involved in a small business and to
make some pocket money. But it had evolved and they acquired
a peak of 86 customers; a customer being a student flat of
five to seven flat-mates. In any given week, they would
usually get between 50 and 60 orders. The most they ever
delivered was 70.
Mr Booth attributed MeatMail's success to the condensed,
intimate nature of the student area.
The enterprise was second in this year's Audacious student
business plan competition.
The meat was sourced from a butchery in the city and the pair
picked it up in a refrigerated truck, making the deliveries
on Sunday afternoons.
It had been a restricted delivery area, focused on the
central and north end of the city, as they were doing it
However, the model they were now working on allowed them to
deliver outside that area for a small delivery fee.
The plan was to take it to other centres, including
Christchurch and Palmerston North, and area managers were
By having area managers taking over more responsibility, it
would mean Mr Booth and Mr Uffindell could focus more on
The payment system was developed after a possible issue was
identified, that students were traditionally unreliable.
Subscriber sign-ups and billings were outsourced to payment
solutions company Debitsuccess.
The pair had committed a lot of time to the project and they
now had a very strong brand.
Next year was going to be a big growth phase in the business
while, beyond that, there were a lot of opportunities, Mr
They had been "very pleasantly surprised" at the pick-up
rate, saying they could have justified doing it with 20-30
people. That uptake had turned it into a more serious
project, rather than it being for pocket money, as originally
The venture had also been a lot of fun and the resulting
message was that as much as it was a realistic business
opportunity, it was also a great learning opportunity, he
It had also been good to have the support of the Audacious
programme and the $6000 prize-money would be very useful.