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8 retail chains that you probably didn’t know originated in S’pore

If you thought that most Singaporeans were like you – an unwilling slave destined to slog all your life to pay for your flat, then slog further to make sure you won’t become bankrupt during your old age, you thought wrong. There are many who have tried and failed, but also those who tried and made it big; so big in fact, that you might not even have known that these retailers were Singaporean!

I for one have been misled all this while. Who would have thought that this pricey, classy and oh-so-atas brand of tea and beverages would be a Singaporean company? I am pleasantly surprised though, and will show my support whenever I need a sophisticated cuppa.

Din Tai Fung
Keeping with the theme of food and beverages, not many people might know that this popular restaurant is actually Singaporean; after all, it’s Taiwan old store received 1 Michelin star for its trademark Xiao Long Bao. It is actually owned by Breadtalk, and its owner is Singaporean.

Bonjour. While Poulet serves French rotisserie chicken, it is actually a company owned by Minor Food Group, which started off with Thai Express. Quite the expansion into different types of cuisine, if you ask me; they now boast of companies that serve all sorts of food like Xin Wang Hong Kong Café, Kiseki and New York New York.

Marketplace by Jasons
If you thought that this high-end supermarket selling all sorts of imported European produce was from Europe, you thought wrong. It is owned by the Dairy Farm Group, who also owns Cold Storage and Guardian; and they first opened in Singapore in 1975 before expanding to Taiwan and Hong Kong.

From F&B, we move on to fashion. Judging from its posh name and even posher stores, Raoul is hardly the first company someone will think of when you mention a Singaporean company. Not only have they expanded worldwide, celebrities from all over the world have chosen to wear Raoul for public events.

Charles and Keith
With such a British sounding name, nobody would have guessed that this female accessory company is the brainchild of brothers Charles and Keith Wong, who have taken advantage of women’s penchant for bags and shoes and created an empire of more than 300 stores around the world.

Having had so many big-name celebrities like Andy Lau and Lee Min Ho grace its advertisements, especially those from Hong Kong and other parts of Asia, I personally first thought that this was a Hong Kong company. There is no doubt about its success – most Singaporeans, maybe even Asians, think of Osim whenever you talk about wellness products.

Singaporean teens are quite the gamers, but never would I have imagined that a premier producer of computer gaming apparel and accessories would be Singaporean. It makes me feel all that less guilty of blowing large amounts of money on fancy gaming keyboards, mice and headphones knowing that it is coming back to our country.

Top Image:March Marcho / Shutterstock.com


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