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Final eng report

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Final eng report

  1. 1. d ,
  2. 2. d , SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE, BUILDING AND DESIGN FOUNDATION IN NATURAL BUILD ENVIRONMENT REPORT TITLE: A TALE OF TWO SEAFOOD RESTAURANTS IN MALAYSIA GROUP MEMBERS: Names Presentation Roles SCHANI BHARAT (0318788) INTRODUCTION, COMPETITION, CONCLUSION BRIDGET TAN SU TING (0318370) STRATEGIES AHMAD ASHRAF (0317744) INTRODUCTION CLAUDWIE TAN WAN SIEN (0317997) EXPANSION AHMAD RAZIN (0318779) COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS ENGLISH 2 (ELG 30605) LECTURER: CASSANDRA WIJESURIA SUBMISSION & PRESENTATION DATE: 3RD DECEMBER 2014
  3. 3. Table of Contents No. Contents Page no. 1 Key Summary 3 2 Methodology 4-5 3 Introduction to Seafood in Selangor 6-7 4 Unique Seafood Restaurant 8-12 5 Bagan Seafood Restaurant 13-15 6 Comparative Analysis 16-18 7 Conclusion 19-21 8 Table of Similarities between Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants 22 9 Table of Differences between Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants 23 10 Recommendation 24-25 11 References 26 12 Bibliography 27 13 Appendix 28-43 FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 3
  4. 4. Key Summary For this research assignment, we are required to prepare a report on the comparative analysis of two business operations of a similar industry in different geographic locations. Our group unanimously voted to focus the study on popular seafood restaurants. We chose to compare a seafood restaurant in Klang Valley called Unique Seafood Restaurant in Petaling Jaya and a seafood restaurant in Kuala Selangor called Bagan Seafood Restaurant. Each of the restaurants is very well-known among seafood enthusiasts within the urban populated Klang Valley and the seaside town of Kuala Selangor respectively. At the end of the study, it is found that Unique Seafood is more commercially successful compared to Bagan Seafood. Both restaurants share a similarity based on their markets; two of them possess a monopolistic competitive nature. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 4
  5. 5. Methodology After receiving instructions on the objective of the study, we then brainstormed to shortlist the businesses which we were interested to find out more about. These included consultancy firms, property developers and the food and beverage businesses. However we unanimously voted on seafood restaurants as we were all interested in food. We carried out research on the popular seafood restaurants within and outside Klang Valley through our own experiences, interviewing seafood enthusiasts (basically friends and family members), reading magazines and books and searching for websites on popular seafood restaurants in Malaysia. The most challenging part of this assignment was calling up the shortlisted restaurants on our list for appointments and facing rejections. Nevertheless we were strongly motivated and our perseverance finally landed us initially with Pantai Seafood Restaurant in Kayu Ara. However our interview session with Mr Calvin Lee, Manager of Pantai Seafood Restaurant went horribly wrong when he was reluctant to be videotaped during the interview. Fortunately, the interviews with the managers of Unique Seafood Restaurant and Bagan Seafood went smoothly. The managers both spoke in Mandarin with minimal words in FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 5
  6. 6. English. We had to translate the interviews into English for our analysis and write-up. The interviews were conducted during the weekend of 22nd – 23rd November 2014. The list of questions was drafted in part from the suggested general list from the lecturer and our list of queries which we were curious to find out about the seafood restaurant business. The responses recorded from the interviews were then analysed and discussed. This write-up is about our thoughts and findings about the two seafood restaurants. The limitations and constraints of this report are the information given by the respective managers of the restaurants, their views and experience during the tenure they work in the restaurants. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 6
  7. 7. Introduction to Seafood Industry From our readings on the seafood industry, we were told that man fished since prehistoric times using bird’s beaks for hooks and plant stalks for line. Early cave pictures show drawings of man fishing. Mounds of cast-off shells from ancient times have been found throughout the ancient world (Anderson & Martínez-Garmendia, 2003). The need or more food and bigger fish encouraged fishermen to develop more efficient methods of fishing and to travel even farther from shore. As a result of larger catches, the fishing enterprise expanded from a small boat, local village business to one that permitted additional onshore people to enter the business and distribute their catches to market places and food outlets (Granata, Flick & Martin, 2012). The seafood industry is a booming business in Malaysia where the value of fish trade continues to increase. Seafood demand has been growing steadily over the past years for a variety of reasons including a rise in living standards, a great variety of available seafood compared to other meats, affordable pricing and growing appreciation for alternative forms of healthy foodstuff (Department of Fisheries Sabah, 2011). As a cheap source of animal protein, fish is considered an important food item by locals. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 7
  8. 8. Due to easy access to fish and fish products, Malaysia happens to be one of the highest fish consumers in the world (Anderson & Martínez-Garmendia, 2003). In Malaysia, seafood restaurants are favoured by many, especially the Chinese. Fish is a very crucial part of the Chinese cuisine – it is the representational symbol of abundance and prosperity. The preparation of this dish is very delicate and it depends solely on the styles and skills of cooking by the chefs in the restaurants. There are countless well-known seafood restaurants allocated in Malaysia, some of which include Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 8
  9. 9. Unique Seafood Restaurant “It's vibrant, value for money, comfortable and casual and serves delicious fresh live seafood." The Unique Seafood Restaurant is located at Jalan Kemajuan, Section 13 in Petaling Jaya, Selangor. The brand consists of three concepts; the Unique Seafood Restaurant concept, the Pantai Seafood Restaurant concept, and the Cheers Palace concept (with banqueting facilities). As of today, there are seven branches located in Malaysia (Unique-seafood. com.my, n.d.). We narrowed our research to Unique Seafood Restaurant at Jalan Kemajuan, the main restaurant branch. The Unique Seafood Restaurant concept is a full service restaurant FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 9
  10. 10. specialising in live (and therefore fresh) seafood selections and localised Cantonese cuisine with Dim Sum specialties ('Unique Seafood', 2014). In this branch, there are approximately 90 employees – half of which work morning shifts, whilst the rest take the evening/night shifts. According to the manager, the number of customers a day average from 800 to 1000 and would be higher during peak seasons, i.e. Chinese New Year and other festive periods. On weekdays, the restaurant’s customers are mostly office workers from Petaling Jaya who eat together with their colleagues, conduct business lunches or entertain clients during lunch and dinner. On weekends, the customers are mostly families and foreign tourists. Business is also generated from group functions like weddings and birthdays (Ng, 2014). The Dining Area has a vibrant, cheerful and relaxed atmosphere with efficient service staff carrying out their duties professionally. The colour scheme is of blue, yellow background with splashes of Spanish red colour spotted around the restaurant. The main FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 10
  11. 11. attraction is the Aquarium area, strategically located facing the main entrance of the restaurant and features a spectrum of tanks filled with live fishes, prawns, lobsters, Alaskan crabs, clams and abalones etc. imported from all over the world. Guests can make their selection of the live fishes and seafood from here to be prepared to their liking by the Master Chefs (Lee, 2014). The pictures above portray the signature dishes. The menu is predominantly localised Cantonese cuisine serving from appetisers, soups, main courses (live seafood selection, a wide selection of chicken, lamb and beef dishes (pork and lard free), fresh vegetables, fried rice and noodles selections, dim sum and desserts). Its signature items are the live FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 11
  12. 12. seafood with added variety of meat selections and vegetables accompaniment. The array of cuisine served emphasises on the freshness and flavour of the food (Low, 2014). Private rooms with KTV facilities are also available for the comfort of guests hosting private business and leisure gatherings. The restaurant was started by Mr. Wong Keong Fook in the year 2001. Before venturing into the restaurant business, Mr. Wong led a distributing company called Weng Fatt Fresh & Frozen Seafood Sdn Bhd. It was incorporated in 1994 as an importer and distributor of fresh and frozen seafood. Through perseverance, determination and a lot of hard work, Mr. Wong successfully expanded the business to become a major player in the seafood industry. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 12
  13. 13. Through the course of history, the company achieved many milestones, including being the first seafood importer to introduce marine species that were never seen in Malaysia, namely; Chinese sturgeon, French turbot, Alaska spider crab and the Atlantic king crab. As business bloomed, the company began supplying fresh seafood to all the major hotels in the nation. In 1997, Weng Fatt secured the contract to supply fresh seafood to Malaysia's largest catering group, Tai Thong Restaurant Group. Subsequently, Weng Fatt won the rights to be the exclusive supplier of live seafood to the Genting Group. Today, the company is the nation's largest wholesaler of fresh live seafood with over 80 types of imported marine species and premium freshwater river fishes. With the expansion of the business and the need to diversify, Mr. Wong took a bold step to venture into the restaurant business. Mr. Wong holds the distinction of being the first seafood wholesaler with its own flagship restaurant, Unique Seafood Restaurant, PJ. Subsequent restaurants were established to meet the booming demand. Today, Mr. Wong Keong Fook heads a group of companies. Over the past few years, Mr. Wong opened a few relatively new branches in Malaysia and has plans to further expand the business. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 13
  14. 14. Bagan Seafood Restaurant Bagan Seafood Restaurant is located at Jalan Feri Lama, Kampung Pasir Penambang, in Kuala Selangor, Malaysia. It has been in existence since year 2004. Before operating in Kuala Selangor, the restaurant was situated at Kapar, Klang. This seafood restaurant is prominent in the Kuala Selangor district for its special fresh seafood delicacies (Cheong, 2012). The main aim of the restaurant is to provide complete satisfaction to customers with their services and food. There is only one branch in the whole of Malaysia with a total of 11 employees. The number of customers average from 200 to 300 a day and can be higher during peak seasons (Wu, 2014). FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 14
  15. 15. With over 70 dishes, this restaurant attracts local as well as foreign tourists travelling to the West Coast who crave the taste of fresh seafood. It has an open air area facing the riverside for customers who wish to enjoy the cool breeze and scenic river view whilst indulging in their scrumptious seafood dishes FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 15
  16. 16. The founder of this seafood restaurant, Mr. Wu Yong San and his wife, Ms. Ling Hui San currently operate the eatery. Born in a meagre family, Mr. Wu was first introduced to the seafood industry by his father who worked as a fisherman. He gained interest in the industry when he was 11 years old and opened up his own seafood restaurant when he reached 21 years of age. The array of seafood was originally hand-picked by the owner when the restaurant first opened. However, after a few years of operation, the increased demand of seafood in the restaurant required the external help of suppliers. So far, the restaurant has not developed over the course of its operation and the owner does not have any plans to expand the business. He only wishes to maintain the growth of the business. Other than its fresh and delectable seafood, Bagan Seafood Restaurant also offers exciting activities like eagle-watching and firefly-watching at the Kuala Selangor Nature Park. The tickets are priced at RM25 and RM12 respectively. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 16
  17. 17. Comparative Analysis Unique Seafood Restaurant has a number of competitors located in its respective geographical location. In the vicinity are similar restaurants selling seafood dishes. These are the Oriental Pavilion Restaurant - on the first floor of nearby Jaya 33, Noble Mansion Restaurant - Plaza 33, and the Ee Chinese Cuisine at nearby Eastin Hotel. These restaurants are the top three competitors. Other competitors include Green View Restaurant, situated further down the road along the perpendicular Jalan Semangat and the Oversea Restaurant at the Armada Hotel about a five minute drive away. Nevertheless, as Unique Seafood has a wider range of fresh live seafood, it maintained its competitive age over the others. Oriental Pavilion and Noble Mansion Restaurants are both owned by the same chain, have limited fresh seafood although parking in these areas is abundant and more convenient (Orientalrestaurants.com.my, 2014). The setting at these restaurants are equally if not more posh and the services are of a good standard. Ee Chinese Cuisine has excellent service but is not specialised in seafood and its cooking style being mainly Sze Chuan - a different style of Chinese cuisine. Three of these places are priced slightly higher than Unique Seafood Restaurant. Bagan Seafood Restaurant has many competitors located within a mile from its geographical location. Its top three competitors are the River View Seafood Restaurant, FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 17
  18. 18. Kuan Hwa Restaurant and the Jeti Seafood Restaurant. (Riverviewseafoodrestaurant.com.my, 2014). Other competitors include the Kuala Sungai Seafood Restaurant, Sin Hai Ping Seafood Restaurant, Mei Wei Seafood Restaurant and the Wharf 72 Restaurant. All of these restaurants serve similar dishes of seafood in a similar setting, i.e. by the river. Both outlets focus on their freshness of their supplies of seafood; Bagan Seafood Restaurant being near the source of direct supply of seafood from fishermen, while Unique Seafood has a large aquarium of both fresh and seawater fishes, crabs and other seafood. Due to the apprehension of discerning customers who are concerned about use of chemicals in preserving the freshness of fishes, these restaurants strive as they ensure their dishes are from live products and therefore are presumably fresh and will not be detrimental to customers’ health and wellbeing. Both Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants employ a similar strategy by promotions via discounts on set menus and special offers on selected dishes every once in a while to lure customers. Other than that, the chefs come up with innovative dishes regularly to increase the variety of products. Both Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants are regularly advertised in newspaper articles and magazine spreads. These forms of strategies have ostensibly aided in the increase in number of customers at each of the restaurants. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 18
  19. 19. The manager and founder of the outlets stated that they are not very affected by their competitors as they are more established and have a very loyal base of customers who trust the quality of their seafood. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 19
  20. 20. Conclusion In conclusion, from the interviews and information gathered, we perceive the seafood restaurant business is growing but is rather competitive. The initial capital investment is rather high but the returns are still lucrative as the businesses we observed are still thriving. However, there are concerns that the business may be affected by the general perception of the state of the economy (with the coming implementation of the GST) as demand for the more expensive dishes may be curtailed. With increasing competition, the managers are concerned about increasing difficulty in securing regular fresh supplies, retaining quality chefs and helpers, recruiting and motivating captains, waiters and waitresses in this food and service industry. There are concerns also about the increasingly high wages and the clam down on foreign workers as well as the integrity of the staff. The Kuala Selangor outlet being in a small town, is also concerned about the frequent health inspection checks and the need to ensure that cleanliness and hygiene is maintained at all times. There is difficulty for newcomers in this market as the existing ones have maintained their reputation and loyal base of customers unless the newcomer is prepared to undercut pricing while maintaining the quality of dishes and services expected by discerning customers. When it comes to food, customers are wary of trying new outlets unless they are familiar with the reputation of the owner or chef as when it comes to seafood, FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 20
  21. 21. freshness is of paramount concern. Nevertheless, the food industry is an essential industry and the restaurants will be able to monitor the popularity of dishes and cater for whatever pricing and state of the prevailing economy as the margins are still good. Furthermore, based on our research, we have also concluded that the seafood industry is a monopolistic competition as there are many seafood restaurants that constantly strive to compete amongst each other. There are also various seafood products with differences in price. Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants come up with innovative dishes frequently to increase product variety. Advertising and promotional activities are also crucial for competitors to compete in this industry. Unique Seafood Restaurant - located in a highly populated area - is a more commercially successful outlet. The reason for this is because Unique Seafood Restaurant is a large company that constantly strives to improve themselves by diversifying their products and maintaining the quality of their existing products. In view of its location and its much larger catchment population, Unique Seafood Restaurant has a higher success rate as compared to Bagan Seafood Restaurant. Unique Seafood Restaurant is constantly trying hard to cater to their customers’ every need and they have the funds and man power to back them. Meanwhile, a more minor restaurant like Bagan Seafood Restaurant is a much smaller businesses and is less ambitious than Unique Seafood Restaurant. Even though Bagan Seafood Restaurant is a popular seafood destination, there is competition from its FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 21
  22. 22. immediate neighbours offering similar dishes in similar environment. The owner of this restaurant is satisfied with earning enough to make a living and is not keen on enterprising their businesses. Table of Similarities between Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 22
  23. 23. Similarities Unique Seafood Restaurant Bagan Seafood Restaurant Products Seafood and Chinese cuisine Best-selling products Fish and crab Location Selangor Type of food Halal Customer base Office and factory workers, local and foreign tourists Business strategy Promotions and advertising Nature of markets Monopolistic competition Table of Differences between Unique Seafood and Bagan Seafood Restaurants FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 23
  24. 24. Differences Unique Seafood Restaurant Bagan Seafood Restaurant Business size 1000 pax a day 300 pax a day Annual profit Over RM3 000 000 RM500 000 Location Petaling Jaya Kuala Selangor Population catchment 650 000 25 000 Immediate competitors Five Seven Seating capacity 1500 pax 300 pax Environment Urban centre Fishing village Building type Modern concrete building Brick and timber building Kitchen Modern, well-equipped Traditional Business owner Corporate with professional managers Husband and wife team Air-conditioning Air-conditioned Open sea breeze Standard of hygiene Clean Kampung type Recommendation FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 24
  25. 25. Unique Seafood Restaurant The limited parking spaces are one of the major reasons why customers are driven away from this restaurant. The parking fee is charged at a very high rate and should be lowered to meet the satisfaction of customers who wish to park near to the restaurant. Based on unbiased customer reviews, the restaurant lacks in comfort. As customers walk in and take their seats at their respective tables, about thirty waiters stare at the customers and do not approach them with a menu immediately. Instead, a manager comes to take your order about five minutes later. As such, skilled and efficient workers should be hired and trained well before becoming employed. The managers also do not speak fluent English and it automatically becomes a challenge for foreign tourists to communicate their orders. For this, at least five managers with sufficient knowledge of the English language should be employed to work in this restaurant. Bagan Seafood Restaurant. The service at this restaurant is relatively slow due to the limited number of employees. Based on customer reviews, most of the complaints depict slow response to calls towards waiters and ill-mannered attitudes from staff. For a restaurant that prioritises service, it is recommended that the owner of the restaurant thoroughly consider the workers’ traits, personality & attitude before employing them. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 25
  26. 26. Other than that, the cleanliness of the restaurant is also poor. With a limited number of employees, the restaurant does not emphasise on hygiene and this brings about the dissatisfaction of customers. As such, the workers should be divided into groups to carry out specific tasks. An organisational chart should be constructed to allocate each worker to a particular errand. The promotional and advertising efforts of this seafood restaurant are very minimal. Without the help of advertisements, the restaurant will remain small and will not expand. It is recommended that the restaurant increase their efforts in promoting and advertising their business by putting up social media sites or an official website to establish its name. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 26
  27. 27. References Anderson, J., & Martínez-Garmendia, J. (2003). The international seafood trade. Boca Raton [Fla.]: CRC Press. Cheong, S. (2012, July 19). The sauce of pride. The Star, p. 20. Dacho, H., Galid, R., & Wong, A. (2009). MARKETING AND EXPORT OF MARINE-BASED FOOD PRODUCTS (1st ed., p. 1). Sabah: Department of Fisheries, Sabah. Retrieved from: http://www.fishdept.sabah.gov.my/sites/default/files/uploads/file-upload/ 69/marketing-and-export-marine-based-food-products.pdf Granata, L., Flick, G., & Martin, R. (2012). The seafood industry. Chichester: Wiley- Blackwell. Lee, C. (2014, November 23). Personal interview. Low, C. (2013, January 9). Unique Seafood serves fresh seafood dishes. The Star, p. 96. Ng, C. (2014, November 22). Personal interview. Orientalrestaurants.com.my. (2014). The Oriental Group of Restaurants. Retrieved from: http://www.orientalrestaurants.com.my/ Riverviewseafoodrestaurant.com.my. (2014). River View Seafood Restaurant. Retrieved from: http://riverviewseafoodrestaurant.com.my/ Unique-seafood.com.my. (2013) Unique Seafood. Retrieved from: http://www.unique-seafood. com.my/about.html Unique Seafood. (2014). Time Out KL Magazine, (106), 20. Wu, Y. S. (2014, November 23). Personal interview. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 27
  28. 28. Bibliography Ching, A. (2006, June 3) A unique feast. The Star, p.25. Kuala-selangor.com. Kuala Selangor Seafood Restaurant. Retrieved from: http://www.kuala-selangor.com/kuala-selangor-seafood.html malaysiamostwanted.com. (2013). food - Pantai Seafood Retrieved from: http://food.malaysiamostwanted.com/cuisines/seafood Nash, C. (2011). The history of aquaculture. Ames, Iowa: Wiley-Blackwell. OpenRice Malaysia. (2013). Restaurant Fresh Unique Seafood 23 (Petaling Jaya (North). Retrieved from: http://my.openrice.com/klangvalley/restaurant/restaurant-fresh-unique- seafood-23/78415/ FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 28
  29. 29. Appendix Bagan Seafood Restaurant FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 29
  30. 30. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 30
  31. 31. Unique Seafood Restaurant FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 31
  32. 32. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 32
  33. 33. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 33
  34. 34. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 34
  35. 35. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 35
  36. 36. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 36
  37. 37. Interview with the Manager of Unique Seafood Restaurant C – Claudwie M – Manager, Ms. Catherine Ng C: Hi Ms. Catherine, when was this business found? M: Around 2001. C: So the business has been up and running for over 10 years? M: Yes. C: Who are the key founders? M: The owner is a married couple. C: What are their names? M: Mr. and Mrs. Wong. C: What are your main products? M: Seafood. C: What is so special about the seafood here? M: Our boss handpicked many of the seafood ingredients you see here from around the world. Many only unique to our restaurant. C: Oh. I heard you’ve got Australian King Crabs here, am I right? M: Yes, but it is currently out of stock now. We have Scottish Spider Crabs too. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 37
  38. 38. C: Who are your main customers? M: During weekdays our customers are mostly office workers out for lunch break or dinner. Foreigners too. The ones in the weekends are mostly families. C: How many branches do you have? M: Here in PJ, together with Elite Seafood, also under the same company, Pantai Seafood in Kayu Ara, in Citta Mall, Kota Damansara and four others I can’t recall. C: How many employees are there in this branch? M: Around 90 employees. C: Do you have many competitors? M: Our main competitor would be Jaya 33 Seafood Restaurant, also in this area. C: How do you compete with them? M: We do not have many elaborate strategies but we employees do the best in our part. Our seafood though is always fresh. C: How about promotions? M: We only have promotions if we bring in seafood in bulk. C: Generally, do you feel it is easy to enter this market? M: No it is not as easy as you think, but ultimately it all depends on how the owner manages his business. C: Are your pricing decisions strongly affected by your competitors? FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 38
  39. 39. M: Actually, our seafood is cheaper compared to other seafood restaurants. It is because we import seafood on our own without needing to rely on suppliers so that is exactly why we offer lower prices. C: What are your recent developments? M: Our founder has opened a few branches over the past few years and he will keep expanding this business during the years to come. C: How often do you release a new dish? M: It depends. The seafood available will always be the same but there will always be some variation made to the way the chefs cook the food. C: That will be all for now, thank you! FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 39
  40. 40. Interview with Founder of Bagan Seafood Restaurant C - Claudwie B - Boss C: Nice to meet you, Boss. B: Nice to meet you. C: If I may ask, when did you decide to start up this business? B: Our original location is in Kapar, shall we count that in? If so, we started in 2004 and moved here after 2 years, in 2006. C: So, you are the founder? B: Yes. We moved from Kapar to Kuala Selangor. C: Where is Kapar? B: Somewhere near Klang. C: Oh, Klang. B: Yes. C: So this business has been up and running for 10 years? B: Yes. C: Were there any other founders or primary shareholders? B: No, I built this business up single-handedly. C: What prompted you to start this business? FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 40
  41. 41. B: I’ve been working in the culinary field as a part-timer, starting my own business only after working for about 8 years. C: So you started working as an underling? B: Yes, my father worked as a fisherman and my family wasn’t wealthy. My mom then encouraged me to take part in the seafood-related business since I had some interest. I then started my own business at the age of 21. C: What are your main products here? Any special dishes? B: We have steamed fish, crab all sorts of seafood. C: Do you choose all the seafood yourself? B: Well I used to but now since we need more, we turned to seafood suppliers. C: Who are your customers? B: Most of them are workers out for lunch break, families, even tourists. C: Wow, even tourists? B: Yes, many from Singapore and China. C: So do they come back here to eat whenever they are in Malaysia? B: Not definitely, they usually are recommended by the tour guides, but some guides who’ve eaten here before will insist on coming back for a second visit (laughs). C: Oh, good food? B: Yes, tourists from Korea and China look forward to coming back again. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 41
  42. 42. C: How much do you earn annually? B: After deducting cost and expenses, about RM500,000. C: How many branches do you have? B: None. C: So there isn’t a branch in Klang anymore? B: Yes. C: How many employees do you have? B: Around 11 full-time workers. C: So you also employ part-timers? B: Yes, like students who can work on the weekends. C: Can you tell me a brief history on this business? B: Not much to tell about. The history of the restaurant is as much as mine. C: Like how you worked your way up? B: Yes. C: Do you have any competitors? I can see that there are a few seafood restaurants around here. B: It is good to have competitors. It gives you the drive to improve yourself. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 42
  43. 43. C: Who are your top 3 competitors? B: We don’t have many. The dishes here are all of my own recipes. Customers eating here will eventually try out other restaurants. They might get tired of eating the same thing all the time. C: Anything special about Bagan compared to other seafood restaurants? B: Depending on the customers. They should know (laughs). The Singaporeans love having one of our dishes utilising an array of seafood ingredients. C: Is that your own recipe too? B: Yes. C: So, do you do any promotions? B: We usually do so when bringing in fish and crab in bulk. C: How much capital did you require to start this business? B: I first started off with around RM10 000. I slowly expanded the business from 10 measly tables to a grand 30. C: Was your restaurant in Kapar big? B: Not in comparison to this one. We could only fit 10 tables. After that we moved to the stalls beside Giant Hypermarket down the road, prior to government reclamation for development purposes. When we moved to this location we only had 20 tables. C: So from 20 tables to 30 here? B: Yes. We’ve been in this location for about 8 years now. FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 43
  44. 44. C: So you’ve moved twice? B: Yes, twice. C: Do you think it is easy to enter this market? B: You must have passion in doing anything, not only in this business. C: What are examples of obstacles faced by new businesses wishing to enter the market today? B: It will be difficult, but it all depends on how you make it happen. If you want to start big, it will be nearly impossible. Seafood restaurants are unlike franchising fast food restaurants. What we serve in seafood restaurants is dependent on the cooks, unlike Old Town or KFC. C: Is it because those two are renowned businesses? B: Yes, they have advertisements everywhere while their products are simple and ready-made. We, however, are different in our ways of selling and marketing our food. C: So, your restaurant will increase the types of dishes in the menu? B: Not only that, but when customers ask for a special dish, they will have many choices to choose from. Plus, customers get tired of eating the same array of dishes so variety helps. My customers are also mostly tourists, only 5% are locals. C: Wow, that’s a lot of tourists. B: Yes, things like the increase in petrol price will affect our business a lot, so we tend to release new dishes to keep the hype up. C: That will be all thank you! FNBE FEB 2014 – ENGLISH II (ELG 30605) Page 44
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