Tay Su-Lyn, 41, Founding Partner, Violet Oon Singapore
Co-founder of fashion label T-Bags, which she divested out of in 2013, she now runs Violet Oon Singapore with younger brother Tay Yiming. It was the thought of losing their mother’s life’s work and legacy that prompted the siblings to revive the Violet Oon brand and their family restaurant business into a culinary empire. “You know that Peranakan hospitality where you invite people into your home to makan (eat), we wanted to keep that DNA alive the branding of Violet Oon’s Kitchen,” says Su-Lyn. “But at the same time we want to give diners an experiential dining experience and give Singaporean food the respect it deserves. It’s not fine dining per se, but we want to offer something that comes from the heart that will attract people from all generations.” Su-Lyn in particular has been instrumental in spearheading this drive to modernise the Violet Oon brand to appeal to a broader audience and it’s paid off as the business currently has three outlets in Singapore with plans to expand.
Read more about Su-lyn here.
Photo: Yann Cloitre/SPHM
Candice Ong, 33, Chief Commercial Officer, ShopBack
At the tender age of 33, Candice has pushed e-commerce start-up ShopBack from a Singapore-based team of just three people in 2014 to a regional force of 100 employees today. In addition, her tenure as Chief Commercial Officer has seen the company flourish across six nations in Asia in less than three years, and outgrow their No. 1 competitor, Ebates.com, in the region. Not bad for a young lady who took a massive pay cut just so she could jump ship from finance to tech. “In 2012, I saw that my US-based friends whom I respected were making huge career switches. That helped to push me to make the change as well,” says Candice. “Most importantly, I realised that I didn’t see myself doing banking in the next five years when I took a moment to reflect my career path. I wanted to expand my skillsets and open more options.”
Read more about Candice here.
Photo: Nickly Loh/SPHM
Jocelyn Chng, 50, Chief Executive Officer, JR Group
Having experience a poverty-stricken childhood, Jocelyn turned her life around and is now the boss of one of Singapore’s largest food companies, Sin Hwa Dee. A single mother of three after her husband passed away suddenly while her children were still young, Jocelyn is also the Chief Executive Officer at JR Group, which started serving hot meals from vending machines. Hot food from a box? While it may have its detractors, Jocelyn says it’s all a matter of perspective. “Changing people’s lifestyles and mind-set is not easy, but we are excited about the revolution we are bringing to the F&B market,” she shares. “When ATMs first came out, no one wanted to use them. They were wary and suspicious, but now ATMs have become the norm. It’ll be like that, too, with Chef-in-Box.” The company has since launched 100 standalone vending machines, as well as Singapore’s first vending machine café.
Read more about Jocelyn here.
Photo: Nickly Loh/SPHM