Edwin Low set up a design business with his family 5 years ago. They recently opened their flagship store in Singapore.
What’s your story?
Well, in a nutshell, we (my wife and I) quit our full time jobs and took a sabbatical to spend time with our kids. The only way for ordinary folk like us to afford this is to sell our home. That is how we set up Supermama – a design store based in Singapore. We expected the business to fold within a year and head back to our full time jobs. I’m thankful that we recently celebrated our 5th anniversary in March with the opening of our flagship store.
What excites you most about your industry?
I assume my industry is in design though it may seem like I’m running a retail business. I think we are living in the “golden age” of design in Singapore where businesses (design related or not) recognise the value of design and actively adopt them in their businesses. For example to me, Supermama is not exactly a retail business but a canvas for me to paint on, to pursue what I wanted to do, to sell what I wanted to sell. The business itself is a design medium.
What’s your connection to Asia?
I work with Singapore designers and Japanese crafts facility for all our collection.
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore. It is easy.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Don’t be an entrepreneur.
Who inspires you?
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
Responsibility, first to your family, then friends and then the community. The purpose of existence is for others.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Nothing. Everything happens for a reason.
How do you unwind?
I start my day really late, at 2pm. Usually if it is possible I will spend time with my wife over breakfast after sending our kids to school.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Japan. Specifically Tokyo. That’s the only destination I travel to.
Everyone in business should read this book:
I’m not an avid reader and I don’t think there is ever going to be a book that everyone in business should read. However, I thought everyone in business should watch on Youtube how Steve Jobs introduced the Iphone for the very first time. It still inspires me today. He believed in the Iphone. He really did. And he believed that it can change the world, you can see it all over his presentation. I wonder how many of us in business today truly believe in the product we are going to sell. I revisit the video once in awhile to remind myself that I need to add value to my world.
Shameless plug for your business:
We design and produce some of the best gifts in the world. Our first porcelain collection, titled “Singapore Icons” was awarded Design of the Year at the President’s Design Award 2013 and presented to President Tony Tan during the award ceremony.
How can people connect with you?
@supermamasg (insta, facebook)
This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur:
Callum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries. He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence. A 40 week training program for business owners and executives.
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