Stefen Choo introduced smoking cabins in Singapore to create a socially responsible smoking space. The aim is to bridge both non-smokers and smokers together with this innovative solution where it prevents passive smoking and protects the environments at the same time.

What’s your story?
Every time I would watch TV with my kids and we got hit by the strong smell of second-hand cigarette smoke from my neighbour downstairs, I would worry about the health of my 2 kids. By closing the balcony door is too late. It has given me a personal mission to reduce exposure of -hand smoke. And when I saw this great filtration system from Denmark at a Trade show, I took it as a god-sent solution and brought it into Singapore immediately.

What excites you most about your industry?
Our solution does not require people to quit smoking in order to have air stay fresh. Smokers are encouraged to use the Smoking Cabins, in a choice we call “Responsible Smoking”.

What’s your connection to Asia?
We are a Aviation Spare Parts Trading company based in Singapore. I have been running the company since it started operating here. We supply mostly to Indonesia. Smoking Cabin is a new and non-aviation diversification that we have undertaken.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore, not because it is home, but because we conduct our ourselves and businesses with a level of awareness and integrity which I have come to appreciate.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
“You have been retrenched before. If you think about it, employment is more risky than business. You have no control.”

Who inspires you?
PM Lee Hsien Loong.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
From MEWR (Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources), that cigarettes cannot be banned not because of the number of duties earned from the import, but because of the social impact (on the smoking community and their nicotine reliance) it can create if it were.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I would enter business much earlier, so that I could make and learn from my business mistakes sooner. It would also help me learn to manage my limiting beliefs sooner.

How do you unwind?
I enjoy a science fiction or adventure movie.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Bangkok, Thailand. It is a place I can eat street food without worry. Food and shopping is a joy because it is cheaper there.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Secrets to Winning, by Kelly Poulos and Emily Liu

Shameless plug for your business:
Posting in a Facebook private group of Asiaworks Leadership Program Graduates, about my business done in one of the Leadership Principle that we all know and understand.

How can people connect with you?
By being open and friendly. Over coffee will be nice but not necessary. Over a chilled fermented malt beverage is also good too, also not necessary.

Twitter handle?
I am not active on Twitter. On Instagram and Facebook, it would be @SmokingCabinSG.

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started,
built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

Recently Published

Key Takeaway: The average American spends $120,000 on romantic activities, leading to a significant amount of “dating debt” among millennials and Gen Z. This debt accumulation is attributed to the desire to signal status and the persuasive retail marketing of luxury as synonymous with love. Luxury brands like Gucci and Tiffany use strategic marketing tactics […]
Key Takeaway: Nanotechnology, which includes particles smaller than 10,000 times the diameter of a human hair, is playing a growing role in various industries, including medicine, cosmetics, and medicine. Nanoparticles can pass easily through the blood-brain barrier, potentially enabling better treatment of brain diseases and disorders like cancer and dementia. They can also be used […]

Top Picks

Key Takeaway: The concept of “nudge theory” has gained prominence 15 years after its 2008 book, “Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness.” The book, which inspired politicians like Barack Obama and David Cameron, led to the creation of government teams to incorporate nudge theory into public policy. However, the success of these nudges […]
Key Takeaways: Nanotechnology is set to revolutionize clothing, transportation, and transportation. Clothing will be tailored to individual needs, with synthesizers in closets creating clothing that fits perfectly. Nanosuits, made of 5 microns thick fabric, will cover the wearer’s body, allowing separate holes for individual hairs and making them weightless. This technology will double the amount […]
Key Takeaway: Online algorithms on social media platforms amplify information people are biased to learn from, leading to social misperceptions, conflict, and the spread of misinformation. This mismatch between human psychology and algorithm amplification can result in functional misalignment, leading to incorrect perceptions of the social world and the spread of misinformation. Research on this […]

Trending

I highly recommend reading the McKinsey Global Institute’s new report, “Reskilling China: Transforming The World’s Largest Workforce Into Lifelong Learners”, which focuses on the country’s biggest employment challenge, re-training its workforce and the adoption of practices such as lifelong learning to address the growing digital transformation of its productive fabric. How to transform the country […]

Join our Newsletter

Get our monthly recap with the latest news, articles and resources.

Login

Welcome to Empirics

We are glad you have decided to join our mission of gathering the collective knowledge of Asia!
Join Empirics