Lawrence Koh: Co-founder of ShopAbout

What’s better than shopping at the Great Singapore Sale? How about having the Great Singapore Sale at your fingertips?

That’s what ShopAbout is all about. As one of Singapore’s fastest growing offline-to-online marketplaces, ShopAbout is on a mission to bring thousands of your products from your favourite Singapore retailers online.

Lawrence Koh, co-founder of ShopAbout, explains his vision to transform local shops from brick and mortar to click and mortar, and Shiok! resonates strongly with what Shopabout is doing – to provide local shops with a technological platform so that they may grow their businesses online. We are heartened to see that Singapore brands are being empowered with a digital platform like Shopabout to conduct their businesses online, so that they can remain competitive and relevant with changing times and trends.

The 26 year-old entrepreneur and avid sportsman took some time out of managing the tech start-up he co-founded to share with Shiok! more about himself, and his Singapore story.

Hello Lawrence,

Share with us your favourite local food.

“Hands down, 鸡饭! I love chicken rice, and during primary and secondary school and also JC days, I would always have up to 2 or 3 servings of $2 ji fan! Local nonya dessert Chendol, and Bak Chor Mee would come in second and third on my list of favourite Singapore foods.”

Where do you usually hang out in Singapore?

“I enjoy hanging out in the east side because there is just so much good food in the area. As an avid soccer and LFC fan, I often go to Robertson Quay on the weekends to watch EPL matches live.”

You are clearly a foodie? What do you regard as Singaporean’s favourite past time?

“Eating and shopping of course! Don’t think there is a need to explain either…But if I had to choose just one, I would pick eating.”

What did you see growing up, that you wish was still around now.

“Green spaces…especially the old Marina City Park. My family used to spend our weekends cycling and enjoying the cool sea breeze. I have so many fond memories of that place.”

Share with us your favourite childhood memory.

“My favourite childhood memory would be me being a nuisance and causing trouble for my grandparents at the playground beside my home. Whenever I pass the time-worn playground now, I am constantly reminded of how fleeting life is.”

That’s very meaningful. Where is your kampung (home)?

“Upper Thomson, which in my opinion, is still quite a ‘kampung’ in spite of the extensive development that has been undertaken over the last 2 years.”

We admire Shopabout’s mission to bring Singapore’s retailers online. What is the inspiration behind it?

“After reading about the huge success of the Alibaba Group, and how their online platforms transformed the fortunes of thousands of SMEs across China, I was inspired to do the same of our local market. I want to help Singaporeans and their businesses grow with our technology.”

Well said, well said. What is the daily routine for you in this pursuit for your ambition?

“We start at 9.30 in the morning everyday, and I usually get in the office a little earlier. On a normal day, I clear my emails by early afternoon and spend the rest of the day in meetings with my team, partners, investors, and other stakeholders. But as with all start ups, there is never such things as a normal day, and you are never fully in control of your schedule. No matter how much you plan, you always have to be prepared for when something crops up.”

Sounds very exciting indeed! What is your favourite local brand, besides Shiok!?

“I am not biased when I say I really love NewUrbanMale and Cellini, although both of them happen to be Shopabout’s oldest partners!”

Good to know that we can get those products on your website. Shiok! aims to benefit the local community too. How do you envision Shiok! bringing back the Kampung Spirit for Singapore?

“It is always refreshing to read about our local culture and people. I believe that is exactly what will keep people coming back to Shiok! and supporting Shiok!”

Thank you Lawrence, and all the best for Shopabout.

 

Lawrence is the co-founder of local start-up Shopabout, and also an amatuer beer pong player who has participated in tournaments.

For more information or great shopping deals, please visit www.shopabout.sg. Shiok! readers get an exclusive discount of $15 off any shopping with a minimum $60 purchase by using the promo code SHIOK15.

 

 

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