Christy Tania has whipped up her passion into GLACÉ Dessert Artisanal with the help of a Qantas Points business hack that allowed her business to rise.
At just 24 years of age, Christy Tania found herself at an unusual career crossroads. She’d spent four years working at a global consultancy firm but her side hustle making wedding cakes on the weekend was generating more income.
“That was when I knew I needed to think carefully about the next stage of my life,” she says. “I could either get an MBA and progress in my executive career or see where the baking was going to take me.”
Tania chose the latter and decided that she needed to learn from the best. So she travelled from Singapore to France and enrolled in Alain Ducasse’s École Nationale Supérieure de Pâtisserie before securing a job at the Ritz Paris. Her next step was a move to Melbourne where she built her reputation at venues including Vue de monde, Jacques Reymond and The Langham before opening her own business, GLACÉ Dessert Artisanal, in Windsor in August 2017.
Tania’s patisserie specialises in elaborate frozen desserts that double as edible artworks; the signature raspberry mushroom cake is a stunning combination of raspberry mousse, lychee jelly, caramelised white chocolate and raspberry and almond cake hidden beneath a striking cherry red ganache.
“I wanted my desserts to have a whimsical look. I wanted people to wonder how I made them... the mushroom is our signature dessert because no other places would even attempt it!”
The exquisitely crafted sweet treats were an instant hit with customers but to really grow the business, Tania knew she had to move into the wholesale market.
“When customers come into one of my stores, they pay for the desserts immediately, whereas wholesalers typically ask for 30 days credit. But I still needed to find a way to look after suppliers who wanted to be paid within two weeks or even on delivery.”
"That’s when I signed up for the American Express® Qantas Business Rewards Card. Having up to 51 days to pay for purchases1 on the Card gave us a lot of wiggle room to make sure everyone was happy. My suppliers got paid, while I could provide the wholesalers with desserts and still clear my Card’s balance when they paid. It allowed us to grow much quicker than we would have been able to without the Card and it's a cycle that is still going now.”
A decade after Tania's giant leap of faith, GLACÉ employs 15 staff and turns over more than $1 million annually. And with no pre-set spending limit2, the American Express Qantas Business Rewards Card has been a key driver of that growth.
“If you want your business to reach its full potential, you need a partner that will help you grow organically. When I first got the American Express Qantas Business Rewards Card I would spend $10,000. That wouldn’t even cover my monthly rent payments now.”
But because businesses can access a dynamic line of unsecured funding², Tania’s spending power increased as her business grew. “That means I can cover the costs of the business today and continue to grow tomorrow.”
Not only does the Card make it easier to cover business costs, it also helps Tania earn 1.25 Qantas Points per $1 spent on everyday business expenses³ like equipment, rent, supplies and 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent on utilities like her insurance and tax bill. “I’ve collected over a million Qantas Points that way … and redeeming points for Qantas flights also saves the business money.”
It helped make 2022 the biggest year yet, on both a personal and business front – in addition to opening a third store at Melbourne airport, Tania got married and is now pregnant with her first child. But she’s already looking forward to GLACÉ’s next evolution.
“We’re starting to develop non-perishable products that require some preparation at home and over the next five years we want to expand Australia-wide.”
Unlock the possibilities
Christy Tania shares her top small-business tips…
The key to… turning your dreams into reality
“I chose to pursue a completely new career when I was 24 because I was passionate about baking but that initial drive only took me so far. Passion is enough to start a business but being stubborn is what will make it succeed – you've got to stick to it and be prepared to sacrifice. I spend more time growing the business through problem-solving and doing admin than I do baking now so I’ve had to learn to be passionate about that side of the industry as well.”
The key to… reducing business costs
“Outside of salaries, I use my American Express Qantas Business Rewards Card for 90 per cent of my business expenses. I use the Card for equipment, rent, supplies, earning up to 1.25 Qantas Points per $1 spent on everyday business expenses.³ I’ve collected over a million Qantas Points that way so when I needed equipment for the shops, I used points to buy electronics and Dyson vacuum cleaners from the Qantas Rewards Store. And redeeming points for Qantas flights also saves the business money.”
The key to… thriving in a changing environment
“Every business needs to adapt to what’s happening in the wider world. Going into French pastry, I never thought that I was going to develop a good quality premix but when an opportunity presented itself we did exactly that. In 2020 when people were spending a lot of time at home, I created a hot cross bun mix that could be delivered straight to their door for Easter and it went gangbusters. The next year we sent three pallets to Sydney on top of what we sold in Melbourne and my goal this year is to expand that even further.”
The key to… efficient business travel
“Staying on top of the latest food trends means I have to travel regularly for work and I joke with my husband that once you fly Business, you never want to go back. Fortunately, I can redeem the Qantas Points I earn on the Card for Business flights so I can travel in extra comfort. And if I'm flying economy, the Card provides two complimentary domestic Qantas Club Lounge passes each membership year⁴ so if I have an hour or two to kill after a meeting, I can go to the Lounge and do some admin work rather than losing the rest of the day to travel.”
*100,000 bonus Qantas Points: Offer only available to new American Express Card Members who apply, are approved and spend $3,000 on eligible purchases on their new Card in the first two (2) months from the Card approval date. Eligible purchases do not include Card fees and charges, for example annual fees, interest, late payment, cash advances, balance transfers, traveller’s cheques and foreign currency conversion. Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any other Card product issued by American Express Australia Limited in the preceding 18-month period are ineligible for this offer. 100,000 bonus Qantas Points will be awarded to the eligible Card Member's Account 8-10 weeks after the spend criteria has been met. Subject to the American Express® Qantas Business Rewards Card Points Terms and Conditions. $450 annual fee applies. This advertised offer is not applicable or valid in conjunction with any other advertised or promotional offer. This offer may be withdrawn at any time without notice
Click here for Terms and Conditions.
American Express approval criteria applies. Subject to Terms and Conditions. Fees and charges apply. All information is correct as at 1 March 2023 and is subject to change. This offer is only available to those who reside in Australia. Cards are offered, issued and administered by American Express Australia Limited (ABN 92 108 952 085). ®Registered Trademark of American Express Company.
Image credit: Keren Dobia