| James Kon |
LIHO, the Singapore home-grown bubble tea brand by RTG Group, touched down in Brunei Darussalam with the grand opening of its first outlet of LiHO tea at Times Square Shopping Centre yesterday and is looking to have more branches in the country.
The opening was attended by the guest of honour Political Secretary from the Singapore High Commission in Brunei Darussalam Syfulnizar Hamid and LiHo founders Rodney Tang and Janice Chew.
Appointed Master Franchisee of LiHO Brunei Jeffrey Chia described LiHo in the Hokkien dialect as ‘How Are You’ or Apa Khabar to show that despite the differences in language, culture, beliefs and habits among different races in both countries, a simple greeting of LiHO can bond people together.
Jeffrey Chia also announced that LiHO Brunei is the first in the Brunei market to introduce the Brown Sugar Pearls which is softer, chewier pearls that are packed with the fragrance of roasted brown sugar.
Since LiHo Brunei’s soft opening in October 2018, the brown sugar pearl series remain to be a popular choice for local customers and even in Singapore, it is labelled as the ‘must try’ drink among celebrities, locals and visitors.
Jeffrey Chia also introduced the LiHO customers Loyalty Programme via the Reward Stamps application where customers only need to download the app, scan it at the outlet and to send and earn points.
Jeffrey Chia revealed that it took nearly a year of hard work and discussion to bring the first LiHO outlet to Brunei Darussalam and is hoping to open 10 to 12 outlets nationwide in the future.
He also highlighted that following the soft opening in October last year, there was good response from the public. With proper marketing and guidelines, he believed that there is still more room for LiHO to grow in Brunei Darussalam.
On the Brunei’s market, Rodney Tang meanwhile shared, “We have been in operation for a while and from the response the customers really love our flavours. We are confident that we can further build our business here and open up to six to eight branches in Brunei.”
Since its establishment in 2017, he said, “There are currently 93 LiHO outlets across Singapore and the franchise has since extended to Vietnam and other countries are also in the pipeline. We are still growing and year to year outlook growth is around 20 per cent. As long as we understand the customers’ taste and needs, we can continue to grow.”
The founder of LiHO added, “We intend to bring in more creative flavours to Brunei so that the residents do not have to travel far to seek international flavour in every six months.”
In his message for the public, he said, “We are happy that Brunei is also part of the global family. I hope that members of the public will enjoy the great selection of drinks and also give us some feedbacks.”
The highlight of the ceremony was the ribbon-cutting ceremony by the guest of honour with Rodney Tang, Janice Chew, Jeffrey Chia and spouse.