Record Corporate Earnings - PADINI and Public Bank

Two corporate earnings news worth noting, one in fashion retail and another banking industry.

Other than Bonia, another local company in the fashion retail industry that make it to top spots:

Padini’s net profit to grow at 9.4% three-year CAGR, 7 November 2011

For the financial year ended June 30, 2011, Padini posted a higher net profit of RM75.3 million against RM60.97 million in the previous year.


New stores to drive Padini’s earnings, 25 January 2012

Padini plans to open five stores next year comprising three concept outlets and two Brands outlets.

The concept stores will be in Setia City Mall in Shah Alam, Paradigm in Kelana Jaya, and Jusco in Ipoh. The Setia City Mall and Paradigm will also have Brands stores.

Currently, Padini has a total of 235 outlets.

Chan said the company expects to spend RM15 million for the new stores, including the installation of IT systems.

In the first quarter ended Sept 30, 2011, Padini's net profit rose 47% to RM27 million from RM18.35 million a year earlier driven by the Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Merdeka Day sales. Revenue advanced 30% to RM178 million from RM136.6 million.


Related: Fashion retail and real estates

While Public Bank Posts RM3.05b Net Profit for FY10, Q4 net profit for FY11 up 3.6% on improved performance from Islamic banking.

Record earnings for Public Bank, January 31, 2012

Public Bank Bhd posted a 3.6% year-on-year increase in net profit to RM877mil for its fourth quarter ended Dec 31, 2011, and cited the improved performance as mainly due to higher net interest and net income from its Islamic banking business.


Creative and Built-In Ads

The Samsung tablet ads is creatively put on the front page of The Sun Daily newspaper (Tuesday, January 31, 2012 issue).

Another "built-in" ads example is the "Ho Chak!" programme at TV8 which introduces nice foods to audience. In the recent episode on air (29th January, 2012) in 8TV, where one of the sponsor is Proton Inspira, there is a scene where the lady host told the guy to drive slowly to their destination, where the guy replied "don't worry. I have this auto cruise function here" and a scene showing the car's feature.

Somehow the scenes go like this:

Lady: aiyo, can't you just drive slowly?

男:放心,我有 Autocruise function, 这样就不会超速了!
Guy: Don't worry, I am using the autocruise function, I won't speed!

And then they arrived at the restaurant to continue on introducing nice food...

You can watch the full episode at Tonton:


In summary, with more and more "FREE" things (such as free-games, free-softwares, free preview books content etc), the future of A&P industry will lean towards "built-in ads". This is definitely not a new idea, as many of advertisers already familiar with many of the pay-per-click programs on the internet.


A Look Into The (iPhone) Apps World

Bottom line: investments in Apple's ecosystem are paying off.

In June, 2010 Apple said it paid developers $1 billion for applications.

In October, 2011 at the iPhone 4S launch, Apple stated it had sold 250 million iOS devices and that the App Store had seen a total of 18 billion downloads, paying out over $3 billion to developers.

In January, 2012, Apple is pushing its cumulative payouts to developers above $4 billion.

You can check out detailed milestones and chart showing downloads and available apps on the app store over time, since the App Store was opened in 2008 at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/App_Store_(iOS)

Simple applications such as Little Buddha, iFart, Popcorn Maker can make your apps virally known worldwide, with huge potential making good passive income, where your investment pay offs.

For example, the developer of iFart, Joel Comm, has been pretty forthcoming with sales figures, and on his blog he noted that over Christmas Eve and Christmas day, more than 58,000 people purchased a copy of iFart, netting him over $40,000 dollars in just two days.

What iFart does?

Check out Little Buddha's 39,000 Quotes by Happy Tapper:

Carla Kay White, a yoga lover, runner and owner of Happy Tapper - a small design studio specializing in life improving iPhone and iPad apps, who also wrote a book about how to create iPhone apps called Ideas to Apps, had successfully build a passive income pipe line with this little addictive apps.

The points are:

1. There are many channels available to sell your apps, and almost all comes FREE!

2. Today's apps industry is very similar to that of 1990's web industry.

3. Apps is another option as one of your multiple streams of passive income as it comes clean, compared to web properties where you may still need to consider periodic content updates.


Apple Just Had One Of The Most Impressive Years In Business History
Dec 21, 2010

After 18 billion app downloads, Apple has paid out $3 billion to developers
Oct 4, 2011

Apple has now paid $4 billion to App Store developers
Jan 24, 2012

Little Buddha iPhone Apps

iFart developer makes $40,000 in 2 days


Serviced Apartments

An abuse of the word "serviced apartment"
More and more property types are being ambiguously marketed as both residential and commercial, with titles such as SOHO (small office, home office), SOVO (small office, versatile office), SOFO (small office, flexible office), lifestyle suites, serviced residences and serviced suites, among others. Many of these projects' brochures depict young working professionals in suits toting briefcases, next to images of double beds, saunas, barbeque areas and jacuzzi.

You may heard sales pitch like this: "Our units are like condos but we call them serviced apartments because we have 100 units of shop lots on the ground floor".

However, if there's no management, rental return, housekeeping services or security policy, and it wasn't fully furnished either, this is somehow misrepresentation.

Serviced Apartment

The homeowner must understand the original concept was like with Micasa in KL. It's a commercially run operation. Serviced apartments are paying a premium for the commerciability of places like this. So people should be very hesitant to buy this.

Besides commercial land costs usually being priced higher, properties on commercial titles require owners to pay peak energy, water and sewerage rates as well as quit rent and assessment charges.

The buyer is paying property taxes which are normally double those of residential taxes. In other words, your water price is the same price as the one the Pappa Rich operator pays. The electricity rate is double, and the deposits they take from you are also higher.

Not all residential units on commercial land parcels need to remain designated as commercial however. Upon applying for strata titles, developers may apply for the title's conditions ("syarat nyata") to be converted to containing residential apartments ("bangunan kediaman") as well as shops.

That way, the rate applied to these apartments is a mixed rate ("kadar bercampur") which is less than the rate for commercial shops. "To do this, they just have to pay a nominal additional premium of RM100," says a spokesperson in the strata title department of Selangor's land and mines office.

There may even be a 50% reduction in chargeable quit rent if the number of shops is less than 2% of the number of homes, eg two shops underneath 200 apartments. Alternatively, these shops may be assigned as "common areas" of a condominium, in order to fully designate the development as residential.


There has been a trend for more self contained developments (mixed use developments in which residents live, work and play are being designed), where you can live upstairs then go to the gym, to the movies or shopping downstairs. And with the advent of the MRT, there will also be more transit orientated developments with high rise apartments and retail spaces clustering around stations.

Just give developers a plot ratio* that each location deserves.

More dialogue between property investors, industry players as well as federal and state governments is necessary to achieve a framework that better captures the needs of the evolving populace. This should ideally result in a more accurate treatment and less ambiguous marketing of these properties.

From: The Sun Daily, 27th Jan 2010

* Building permissions for residential developments are based on units or population per acre, while commercial developments are based on plot ratio (total built-up area per land size).

For residential developments to be profitable, developers go for large units which allow them to sell more built-up area per acre. As the demand for big units, the bungalows in the sky, ended (because those who can afford them have already bought them), smaller units sized below 1,200 sq ft and priced below RM500,000 or RM600,000 have been selling like hot cakes at launches.

"Let's say you have a piece of land that is 100,000 sq ft large and you get a plot ratio of 10, so you can build 1,000,000 sq ft of so called offices. Once you have that 1,000,000 sq ft, you can carve those out into any size you want, like 600 sq ft or 700 sq ft."


Fashion Retail and Real Estates

2011 was a year of shopping transactions with major purchases such as Pavilion Mall being bought by the Pavilion REIT for RM2,390 per sq ft, The Gardens Mall by Krisassets Holdings Berhad at RM1,025 per sq ft, as well as the yet unconcluded purchase of Bangsar Shopping Centre. An older shopping centre - The Mall (which was bought over last year by Sunway REIT together with Putra Place for RM513.95 million) - also being upgraded.

Johor Premium Outlets

"JPO has been a sellout. For brands like Levi's, Fossil, Esprit, and many others, this is their best shop in their country now. It's better than KLCC, even on a per sq ft basis." says CB Richard Ellis (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd's managing director, Allan Soo.

More Johor Premium Outlet images: https://picasaweb.google.com/110957824161464689337/JohorPremiumOutlet

A factory outlet in Kuala Lumpur?
You can't put it in the city because it would be too close to what they call in-line stores and that would kill them. So the answer would be to put them as far as possible, perhaps Genting Highlands.

The wholesale market trend
This wholesale market trend came from Hong Kong and Korea and has spread to Taiwan and Bangkok. There's a place in Bangkok called Platinum that is extremely successful. And with recently completed Kenanga Wholesale Mall in Pudu, even some Singaporean retailers get their merchandise there.

Potential locations include Cyberjaya, Cheras, Kepong, Shah Alam and Ampang. "There is still a possibility for better quality retail in Puchong. And in East Malaysia, there are a lot of towkay balak there. There's a lot of money out there and it's still pretty untapped."

Entry of more international brands

One major development to shake up the retail landscape is the imminent entry of several large international brands. "New retailers entering the market pose threats to locals but raise the bar for the industry," says Soo. Besides the possibility of Thailand's largest retail developer, Central Pattana Public Company Ltd, setting up a 1 million sq ft mall in Icon City, Petaling Jaya, Index Living Mall is a home furnishings store from Thailand which has just opened in Vietnam, and is looking to set up in Malaysia.

There have also been revelations that brands such as H&M, Abercrombie & Fitch and Costa Coffee are in discussions with developers and property owners to open several outlets in the Klang Valley. "One of them is likely to sign up soon," says an industry source.

"Abercrombie & Fitch just opened in Singapore, and there is an opportunity for them to come here. And when it comes to brands such as H&M which provides fast fashion, it is a volume game," continues the source. "So they would need spots in KL and PJ with high volumes of visitors."

Source: Opportunities still in retail property


SOPA: The Internet Blacklist Bill

The two pieces of information necessary for you to understand what SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) / PIPA (Protect IP Act) are all about and how they are going to destroy our personal liberties:

Click image to enlarge.

PROTECT IP / SOPA Breaks The Internet from Fight for the Future on Vimeo.

"We oppose these bills because there are smart, targeted ways to shut down foreign rogue websites without asking American companies to censor the Internet," a Google spokesperson said Tuesday.

INFOGRAPHIC: Everything You Need to Know About SOPA

Final Step to Fascism? National Defense Authorization Act Passes
The key takeaway from this kafkaesque law is not its specific provisions or complete decimation of civil liberties, but the fact that this war was never declared on a nation or tangible enemy. It is a war against an abstract idea, therefore there is no enemy to step down and no chance for this war to end. So strap in because this seems to be just the beginning.


The March of Technology

This is the follow up info on the case of Kodak, The Case of RIM (Black Berry), IBM and General Electric. The point of these case studies is about the march of technology, and how important it is to be able to adapt with the times.

Kodak and The March of Technology

For the case of Kodak, although it's sad to see an industry pioneer bite the dust, competition is brutal - better companies have emerged with better products and services at lower prices - it was digital technology that destroyed Kodak's market share.

Ironically, it was Kodak that invented the digital camera nearly 40 years ago, yet it could not keep in step. The fear of self-cannibalisation allowed newcomers to come in and eat their lunch, and by the time it realised it had to play the digital game, it was too late to catch up.

However, its Japanese competitor, Fujifilm - also an old company - which aggressively rode the digital wave has got a market capitalisation of US$12.6 billion today.

So the lesson here is: If you fail to adapt with the times, you'll be rendered obsolete by a newcomer able to ride the current wave. And that won't be a pretty picture. Certainly not a Kodak Moment.

While that is for digital image, let's look at a broader perspective - digital publishing.

Borders, the once-popular US book chain, has gone bankrupt. Why? Because it failed to develop an internet strategy even as Amazon.com, an online retailer started to push ahead with e-books.

Amazon: Game Changer for the Publishing Industry

Who needs publishers? The recent deal for James Franco book fuels fears that online giant has become too dominant and could spell the end for publishers.

For years, the rise of Amazon, which heavily discounts books, has been eating into the once luxurious profit margins enjoyed by mainstream publishers. There are, therefore, growing fears that the online giant could soon send their industry the way of the high street bookstore.

Not only does Amazon's publishing arm launched an array of imprints which released more than 100 new titles, in hardback, paper back and electronic formats, it has also shown itself willing to pay huge sums to secure the services of what it considers to be the stars of the writing profession, using aggressive charm to woo them from the clutches of their former houses.

This growing dominance was upending the status quo in almost every corner of the traditional book industry.

"Publishers are terrified and don't know what to do. Everyone's afraid of Amazon," he said. "If you're a bookstore, Amazon has been in competition with you for some time. If you're a publisher, one day you wake up and Amazon is competing with you too. And if you're an agent, Amazon may be stealing your lunch because it is offering authors the opportunity to publish directly and cut you out. It's an old strategy: divide and conquer." ~ Richard Curtis, a prominent agent

Similarly, the printed newspaper will one day be extinct. It might be some time before that happens but happen it will. And that's because a clearly better medium (tablets and e-readers) and a system of distribution (the internet) has emerged, which will be the way news is delivered in the near future. News organisations that do not keep up with this development will go the way of the dodo.


以亞馬遜的Kindle Fire為例,不只是一個設備,更是進入亞馬遜“雲端世界”的一個流動接口。或者說,你花199美元買的不是一部設備,而是一張進入亞馬遜數碼世界的通行証。只要上網下載,几乎可以把整個圖書館藏在平板電腦裡。

Other than digital images and publications, we will see some convergence in home entertainment as well. As the "old" saying goes: content is king. However, being the platform to communicate all the content may be a better idea. Take a look at Samsung's strategy.

Samsung presents vision for future of consumer electronics, making the world simpler, smarter and more connected

Working across its entire product portfolio, Samsung will remove the barriers that exist between devices and content to deliver a smarter, simpler and more connected life for consumers.

Presenting at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2012, Samsung revealed a new connected ecosystem that encompasses its diverse array of products, content and services.

"We stand alone as the only company capable of connecting all the components of a consumer’s electronic life. From TVs to phones, tablets to PCs, cameras to appliances, we are enabling meaningful connections between them all. Our promise is that you will share and enjoy content across all these devices, easily, anywhere, anytime." ~ BK Yoon, president of Samsung’s Consumer Electronics Division.

Note: ES8000 LED TV redefines how consumers access, experience and manage their home entertainment. Powered by a dual-core processor, users can surf the web while using or downloading multiple apps simultaneously. A broad range of content is also available through Samsung Apps, the industry’s preferred TV apps platform.


Lessons from Kodak

Samsung Pushes Boundaries at CES 2012

As celebrities choose Amazon, is this the end for publishers?


Case Study : Terimee Facebook Fans Page

There are 2 part in this article, first would be the presentation of statistics log, and the second part of it some elaboration on the numbers.

First, take a look at the journey of Terimee Facebook Fans Page towards 10,000 fans:

The overall project started on 1st October, 2011, as covered in 我和我的小三

6/1/12 - 7,169 like this, 2,924 talking about this (~41% of fans count is in active status)

7/1/12 - 7,646 like this, 3,879 talking about this (~51% of fans count is in active status)

9/1/12 - 7,825 like this, 5,212 talking about this (~67% of fans count is in active status)

12/1/12 - 8,307 like this, 5,640 talking about this (~68% of fans count is in active status)

17/1/12 - 10,000 like this, 6,723 talking about this (~68% of fans count is in active status)

Below are some screen shots made from time to time in support of above mentioned figures:

Lessons From Terimee Online Campaign

Though the info we have here may not be the full picture and most likely only a tip of the iceberg, there are still some lessons we can learn from it:

1. Work with the best people to get the best results! Remember the lesson: Pay Peanut, Get Monkey.

2. The golden rules:

apply here as well for online community, simply illustrate:
Facebook not equal activities, activities not equal money.
In other words, having a Facebook page or an online community doesn't mean you will have engage them with activities, and having a large pools of fans doesn't mean you are able to monetize on it. Just as what we have covered in 虚拟大国诞生,第三波淘金潮在 Facebook : 一个 Facebook 粉丝值多少钱? 答案是:最高可达 136美元,关键是:你会变现吗?

3. A branding effect & promotional effectiveness report that conventional A&P (Advertising & Promotion) not able to provide will be complemented by your online presence (such as the Facebook Insights Report Tools). This doesn't mean that radio, TV, printed media, billboards etc are not important, but setting a portion of marketing budget to new medium will definitely give your business a boost (over your competitors who are still sleeping).

Please note that the info used as case study are only those available to public (for instance, the no. of fans, no. of people talking about this), simply click LIKE on Terimee Facebook Fans Page to follow the progress in real time (for what you can see).

Once you get used to online marketing, the tools and resources available in this medium, you are sure to love the powerful leverage it could bring!

In summary, a correct mixed portion of conventional and new medium marketing channel will give your branding and marketing effort a boost. Seek a good professional consultation for a custom made business solution, as every business case is unique, just as conventional advertisements you see on TV.


活到老, 忙到老?

“给我 5 千块,我帮你投资,然后每个月还你 134 块钱,还 5 年。要吗?”

是否有市场上那种 money game 的感觉哩?但这回(绝对)不同,它可是馬來西亞人民信托計劃(SARA 1Malaysia),一个在政府經過完善規劃後才推出的计划,而參與者每月回酬也是經過仔細計算後得出,並非憑空許下承諾。


“如果民眾向指定銀行貸款5千令吉申請一個馬來西亞人民信托基金,在扣除每月攤還84令吉予銀行貸款後,每月依然有50令吉的回酬(5年回酬3千令吉)。” 針對每月134令吉的回酬,林祥才表示這其實是紅利形式

你看,我们政府多么关心人民,没有钱投资还想办法找管道借给你,这不等于变相每个月给你 50 令吉吗?详情请看林祥才:一馬人民信托完善規劃‧每月回酬非空承諾这则新闻。


有趣的是,隔天就有一篇有意思的报道,标题为 “活到老, 忙到老?”,而且文章顶上居然还是一副博彩横幅广告:






想象看,有一间银行每天早上在您的户口存入 86,400,并且在每天晚上取消您没有花掉的余额。


每天早上,它汇入86,400 秒。每天晚上,它取消我们无法妥善利用的部分。






Steve Van Andel & Doug DeVos
Alticor 机构主席


Real Estates Updates - Sri Damansara and Bangi

THIS ARE JUST CASE STUDIES. Some backgrounds of the projects:

Damansara Foresta

A large development of up to 3,000 apartments on 42 acres of land. Amenities planned for this development include an abundance of nature trails, tree houses, lookout points and even a flying fox facility and tea house.

"We could only build on the Grade 1 and Grade 2 slopes, so about half of the rest of the footprint, on grade 3 slopes or more, remains as greenery," said developer Land and General Berhad's head of sales and marketing, Lim Kok Yee.

The units in the first block of this Bandar Sri Damansara hillside development ranged in size from 1,426 to 1,610 sq ft. Prices ranged from RM644,000 to RM923,000, or RM450 to RM570 per sq ft.

Follow up news:

L&G to launch gated project this year
Managing director Low Gay Teck said the ongoing developments include the Damansara Foresta condominium in Bandar Sri Damansara with a gross development value (GDV) of RM700 million, commercial development 8trium in Bandar Sri Damansara (RM700 million) and serviced apartments The Elements in Ampang (RM100 million).

Bangi Sentral

Located in Section 9 of Bandar Baru Bangi, this is a joint venture between Andaman Group and Perbadanan Kemajuan Negeri Selangor (PKNS) comprises a first phase of 86 four-storey shop/offices, and a four-storey shopping centre as its second phase.

Plot size ranges from 24'x70' while built-up area ranges from 6,543 to 11,729 sq ft. Each unit is priced from RM2.15 million to RM 5.5 million, which equates to above RM329 per sq ft. Bumiputera buyers enjoy a 12.5% discount.

All units come with a lift and a lower ground floor for parking, accessed from behind, as well as a full glass façade. The shopping centre is proposed to include a cineplex, bowling centre, book village and IT centre.

Looking at the prices, location and wondering how the sales doing? Check below.

Forest gumption

According to news announced by the developer, there is a spontaneous balloting after first block of Damansara Foresta sold out.

"By the second day, all the units in Block 1 were gone. People then waited from noon to 6.30pm for the price list of the second tower to go up," said developer Land and General Berhad's head of sales and marketing, Lim Kok Yee. "We had no choice but to open up the second tower for sales and to conduct balloting so that people could pick their units. Sales for the second tower have now touched 80%."

How did they get into this? Look at the other paragraphs of the news:

A group of young estate agents were sanguine about this project however and personally invested in a few properties with the intention to resell at a higher price. "We were told the developer will raise prices for the next block by 10% to 20%," said one of the group. They were also encouraged by a 2% early bird discount, and other easy-entry incentives, including a developer interest bearing scheme (DIBS).

Interesting? Take a look at some word of cautious too:

One seasoned investor who held back from purchasing a unit expressed surprise at the number of young attendants at the preview. "The amount of loan you would need to take would be about RM700,000. And if you repaid within 25 years, that's still RM3,800 to pay every month," he said, pointing to the repayment table given out by one of the partner banks.

"How many would be able to afford that, once they've paid off the rest of their outgoings, and what if one member of the couple lost their job?" You would also need to consider the monthly maintenance charges, which have been cited as RM0.25 per sq ft.

The sales for New Sentral of Bangi is surprisingly good too. However, it could be a different crowd.

"I'm proud to share that we are 90% sold and most of our buyers are actually end users, investors and businessmen who have bought the shops for their own use," said Andaman Property Management's head of sales and marketing, Datuk Vincent Tiew at the launch.

"Jakel [Trading] bought 19 shoplots from us where they will consolidate a very big textile city… We also have a lot of buyers who are currently shop owners and retailers in Masjid India, as well as some existing businesses in Bangi"

Worth noting is how the New Sentral of Bangi came about:

"None of the developments since then treated this area as a central commercial development. And since this was the last piece of land to be developed here, the state government said, 'We must make this happen. We want Bangi Walk to be successful and we want to adopt this as the central [business district].'"


Damansara Foresta

New Bangi Sentral


Real Estate Related News - Johor

Puteri Harbour is a mixed hotel, retail and entertainment complex along the Johor coastline. The 275.2ha development combines entertainment and culture with the experience of waterfront living and dining in a natural setting.

Family Entertainment Centre

The Family Entertainment Centre (FEC, at Puteri Harbour, Johor) is a four-storey indoor theme park which will be home to the first Hello Kitty Town in southern Asia, is 80 per cent complete.

Besides Hello Kitty Town, FEC will house popular global children’s characters under The Little Big Club, showcasing Thomas and Friends, Barney the Friendly Dinosaur, Bob the Builder, Pingu the Penguin and Angelina Ballerina.

Besides the Hello Kitty character as well as My Melody and Little Twin Stars, Hello Kitty Town offers Hello Kitty merchandises, stage shows, songs and dance as well as the Hello Kitty Tea Party.

It will introduce a unique Malaysian touch with the opening of LAT’s World, conceptualised by popular local cartoonist Lat, and featuring elements of his well-loved cartoon character, Kampung Boy.

The restaurant there will feature authentic Malay cuisine in a “kampung” setting.

Work on Family Entertainment Centre in Johor progressing well


UEM Land Holdings Bhd, the country's biggest property developer by market value, aims for record sales of RM3 billion this year, after exceeding its own sales forecast of RM2 billion last year.

The aggressive target will continue to be driven by demand in the Klang Valley, where the group plans to offer new residential and commercial units in Mont' Kiara, Kuala Lumpur and at townships in Bangi and Kajang. The company is also looking down south to propel its sales to new heights.

Since 2006, UEM Land has handed over 3,500 homes in Nusajaya, most of which were sold in recent years. "We have very low stocks of unsold units," its managing director and CEO Datuk Wan Abdullah Wan Ibrahim said.

However, analysts have voiced concerns that property prices in Johor could have "overshot" due to short-term hype over the past two years.

Developers like UEM Land are banking on Johor's close proximity to Singapore and recent tightening of the property market there to lure new buyers for homes in Nusajaya.

There is also growing concern that property demand may cool this year, due to economic uncertainties at home and abroad.

UEM Land targets record RM3b sales in 2012

Ties with Singapore on best footing

Singapore is naturally the biggest investor in Iskandar Malaysia, the largest of our development corridors. Hsien Loong said it is very much in Singapore's interests that Iskandar Malaysia prospers and succeeds.

He praised the corridor, formed six years ago, saying it had done well in attracting investments with its broad base of talent, facility and interest which was self-sustaining and able to hold its own in a highly competitive world.

Azman Ujang


Parkson 2012

While one of the brand carried by Dang's Fashion is planning to enter Parkson, it would be interesting to take a look into Parkson's business and their strategy.

Continuous rebranding or store remodelling the key to strong sales growth

"Our customers are now buying more. While the price per item has gone up, the value per transaction has also gone up, which in turn led to higher productivity per sq m. That’s why our same store like-for-like sales growth is strong. And we are the only one (retailer) who consistently upgrades and frequently remodels our stores because we have the resources to do so, " said Datuk Alfred Cheng, Parkson Retail Group Ltd group managing director.

"When we first made changes to our store in KLCC in 2004/2005, we saw sales drop off immediately in the first six to seven months before it started picking up. That’s because the profile of our customers changed and it was not a Parkson that people were used to seeing. Today, we have many regular customers who come back more frequently than they have ever been. We have given the KLCC outlet a facelift four to five times in the last 13 years," he said.

Parkson has evolved from a neighbourhood department store serving the man-in-the-street to one that caters to middle- and upper-middle class shoppers, though it did not become a brand icon overnight.

"We started the rebranding exercise in 2000. We had to move the merchandise overtime to a slightly higher level to communicate with a different platform," said Cheng. "But it has done very well for us. The image and perception of our brand among our consumers, I think today is very different from five years ago," he added.

Growing Kuala Lumpur-listed Parkson Holdings Bhd has been more than a journey; it’s an adventure.

Let's look at the overall strategy of Parkson's business:

Basically we operate with one brand (Parkson) everywhere, except in Indonesia. We will continue to develop the Centro brand there for now, which will cater to the middle-class market. That’s because Indonesia is at the stage of development where the middle-class market is the best position for us to grow very quickly over there. As such, we will develop Centro for the next few years in the 12th or 13th largest cities outside Jakarta that are not quite ready for a Parkson outlet yet.
At the same time, we will come back probably in the next 12 to 18 months, to introduce the first Parkson just in the major cities of Jakarta, Medan and Surabaya, which we will position for the uppermiddle class and premium segments of the market.
This strategy allows us to have fast penetration (in Indonesia), while keeping the integrity of the Parkson brand as it is.

Looking back, 10-15 years ago, we cannot imagine that we will be where we are today. We knew that we wanted to be a regional player, but we did not anticipate the scale that we have today. But again, we got to start thinking where we want to be 10-15 years from now.

This is very similar to previously studied Angry Birds' Tale - We built 51 games before Angry Birds so it wasn't like we were an overnight success...

Excerpt from:
Success did not come overnight for Parkson


The Case of RIM (Black Berry), IBM and General Electric

In the case of Kodak, we had seen how an old company could be wiped out by changes, if they refused to change accordingly. Here, we will study another two similar companies, yet with different outcome.

RIM - Research In Motion
The provider of the BlackBerry, gadget that is quite popular among business people.

Take a look at the excerpt.

The problem with technology is that it is forever changing. RIM should have learnt the lessons suffered by many. Remember IBM? Well they used to rely on their mainframe business. Except there are only so many mainframes that can be sold. And there are only a limited number of companies which could invest in a mainframe. It was not until Louis Gerstner became CEO that the company realised that to survive, it had to find another business that would be sustainable and offset the significant drop in hardware sales. Cue services. Now IBM is unrecognisable from the organisation that Gerstner inherited. But it is much more profitable.

General Electric

General Electric is another company that has constantly reinvented himself. Jack Welch, its former CEO and the man credited with transforming the company, recalls in his book, Jack, of a meeting with the executives of GE's nuclear reactor business. The executives presented their business plan to Welch and confidently predicted that they would get orders to build three new nuclear reactors a year. Welch stunned them when he told them that he wanted a business plan with zero new orders and for the division to be profitable against that assumption. With no new product, the division did the only feasible option available to them — switch from a product-based business to a service-based business. It survived and went from loss making to being highly profitable.

From above strategies imply by IBM and General Electric, you may now have the clue of how to make a business longer lasting. No wonder big car companies like Mercedes is looking at options where they sell you the car once, and keep charging you for electricity through battery rental or servicing for their alternative / renewable energy vehicles.

Excerpt from What next for BlackBerry by Tony Pereira

Follow up news:
Samsung says no interest in buying troubled RIM
"There's no merit (in Samsung buying RIM)," said Lee Sun-tae, an analyst at NH Investment & Securities. "An acquisition would enable Samsung to have its own operating system but the cost is too high. Samsung didn't buy HP's webOS either for the same reason... BlackBerry sales are collapsing and one plus one will not become two. http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/1/18/business/20120118093057&sec=business


Some Politics Related Updates

"Look, I am independent, I am fair. Now, let's play."

An election has much more to do with what is unseen and shrouded from public attention. It involves the mobilising of massive funds, goods and machinery, volunteers (or paid staff, which also depends on financial resources) and other "friendly donations". How constituencies are delineated, and how well-cleaned-up voter rolls are, all have a huge impact on electoral outcomes.

As one of the millions of citizens who are aghast that this great country is being divided by selfish individuals and groups, this is my humble suggestion.

We had enough of the fighting. It has taken its toll both physically and monetarily on the people and the nation. The time has come for all good men and women to come to the aid of the country to work out schemes which create a better quality of life for all citizens irrespective of their race, creed, colour or religion.

We had enough of name-calling, play acting, subversion, accusations and taunts with racial and religious undertones. Where has all these got us to? Are we No 1 in Asean or Asia? Are we a must see destination? Have we set the benchmark for good governance? Despite all the natural resources and the oil money, we still lag behind some of our neighbours because we are expanding our time, effort, and money on power than on moving forward.

All this has to end. It has cost this glorious nation plenty.
In the desire for power, the ordinary people have been caught in between and made to pay, although it is no fault of theirs. For the future of our nation, the people and their children, it is time to say enough is enough and sit down and talk about putting the country on track.

岂能因声音微小而不呐喊! ~山寨电影《网瘾战争》
大葱清白一生,辛辣了千百年也没留下骂名。 ~鲁迅

Related: Corruption is just a fancy word for theft. What our conventional school system teach us doesn't really help to solve this problem in real life ... "If a hawker spends one month in jail for stealing $35, how many years will a politician spend in jail for stealing $5 million?" ... http://www.thesundaily.my/news/263908

Unity govt – the way forward
R. Nadeswaran

Game-changers at the year’s start
Tricia Yeoh