Malaysia Airlines has launched an initiative to allow its employees to create and sell handcrafted items on the airline’s e-retail store.
The airline created MHArtisans to encourage “employee’s entrepreneurial spirit” and champion those who have turned their hobbies into income-generating projects during a challenging time for the airline industry. The platform is open to all employees and products can be purchased on the Temptations store.
The airline is celebrating the launch with exclusive memorabilia and a line of dolls created by two cabin crew members, with prices ranging from MYR 8 (£1.40) to MYR 389 (£68).
Wesley Anak Juntan, a cabin crew member since 2010, has created a collection of three dolls – the Sarawak Doll, the Sabah Doll, and the Kebaya Girl Doll – dressed in traditional Iban costume to honour his origins. The Kebaya Girl is clad in the Malaysia Airlines’ kebaya and styled according to the carrier’s grooming standards, which includes the French twist hairstyle. Additionally, the kebaya is hand-sewn from the fabric of cabin crew uniform.
Meanwhile, Agnes Yap, a former graphic designer who joined the airline over 20 years ago, has created sticker sets, keychains and a protective mask folder, all inspired by the airline’s kebaya girl. Yap began this project by creating designs on her tablet when she had free time during duty flights.
Group Chief Marketing and Customer Experience Officer of Malaysia Airlines Berhad, Lau Yin May said:
“We are thrilled to launch this fantastic line-up of handmade creations by Malaysia Airlines’ employees. With MHartisans, we now have a platform for our internal homegrown talents to showcase their innovations and nurture their entrepreneurial spirit.
“We believe that this new initiative is more than just an opportunity for us to support our colleagues. It also allows us to feature Malaysian-made products which embody our nation’s diverse cultures and heritage. I hope that these products will instil national pride and love for Malaysia amongst our loyal customers. The handicrafts make for an exciting and unique gift for your friends and family to rekindle their love for Malaysia! What’s more, they are now featured on Temptations, so our customers can easily have a souvenir of the Malaysian Hospitality that they miss so much delivered right to their doorstep.”
Earlier this year the airline launched MHhomecooks to further support its employees. The segment on its Youtube channel showcases staff who have set up small businesses selling traditional Malaysian dishes. The initiative aims “to raise awareness and build interest to support these home businesses”. Customers can watch the videos for inspiration, or order directly from the cooks.
The airline has also been seeking other means of raising revenue amid the Covid-19 pandemic. It recently decided to sell its inflight amenities to customers on its e-retail store, following the likes of Qantas which sold off excess stock of premium-class pyjamas, amenity kits and snacks last year.