Sheng Siong, the people’s choice
Sheng Siong came into the supermarket business with a bang. It sold goods and sundries at prices that are more competitive than NTUC FairPrice. It soon gained a big market share and expanded into several markets to the relief of price conscious consumers. At last they have a choice for cheaper products. The latest foray of Sheng Siong was to buy over 5 wet markets from the HDB. There were initial fears that Sheng Siong would upgrade these wet markets like the big property developers do as their trademark modus operandi, and then everything becomes more expensive with a quality and better badge hanging on its door. This fear soon proved to be unfounded as Sheng Siong said it would keep them as they are, cheap wet market without the modern aircon and cleaner environment that come with a different price tag. The relief was a bit short lived but through no fault of Sheng Siong. It did kept to its position of not changing the wet markets to aircon markets. But the takeover of the wet markets is costly. It was reported in CNA that Sheng Siong had no choice but to increase the rentals of the stalls in the wet markets by a whopping 30%. It has to as it has to pay bank interest, maintenance fee, property tax and probably legal fee as well. There was a big outcry in cyberspace when this was announced as the cost of higher rental must surely be passed to the consumers. Some even talked of boycotting Sheng Siong. Overnight, the Robin Hood of small time consumers and housewives who need to buy their food and sundries has lost its glamour and brand name. What a shame. But business is business. Sheng Siong will soon become a bigger player, maybe a global player and providing jobs for the people. The people should be thankful to have Sheng Siong instead of feeling betrayed. Well done Sheng Siong, for the takeover. The consumers will be better off, in the long run.