Logistics In The Time Of COVID
Bokksu’s entire supply chain and operations is from Japan to about 100 countries globally. Everything is sourced there from these family snack businesses, it's been packed there, into curated monthly subscription boxes and they're shipped directly to consumers cross-border shipping. “As you imagine just from that explanation, literally every aspect of that, supply chain or logistics operations, kind of broke down at some point in this past year,” Danny said. When COVID hit in March 2020, Bokksu’s customer acquisition cost went through the roof. Sales were down and the company had some investors pull out because they were in the middle of a second fundraising round at that time. “They were like, nobody needs premium Japanese snacks during a pandemic; people are going to be buying necessities,” Danny said. But after just a few weeks in quarantine seemed, Bokksu saw a surge in orders of people wanting experiences. They couldn’t travel, they couldn’t even dine out at a local Japanese restaurant. They couldn’t go anywhere but they could get things delivered. “At its core, Bokksu is an experience in a box,” Danny said. Things started to pick up in late March 2020 and things have been on the up and up since then.
In mid April 2020, global shipping started shutting down and Bokksu used Japan Post to ship everything from Japan to the rest of the world. Japan first started announcing shipping suspensions to countries all throughout the world. Later that month, Japan Post announced the shipping suspension to the U.S. “We were like, oh my god, that is 70% of our business,” Danny said. Bokksu pushed off the renewals. “We kept taking U.S. orders, because I was convinced I could try and find some type of alternative shipping solution,” Danny said. He spent two weeks talking to logistics professionals and found an alternative shipping solution to keep shipping to the U.S. in a roundabout way.