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Yeo Sam Jo
Sunday, Jun 29, 2014

Singapore

Ng steps down as Fairprice chairman

The Straits Times | Yeo Sam Jo | Sunday, Jun 29, 2014

Mr Ng Ser Miang was appointed chairman of the board in Sept 2005.

After nearly nine years as chairman of FairPrice, Mr Ng Ser Miang stepped down from his position at the group's annual general meeting yesterday.

Board member Bobby Chin was elected as his successor, the co-operative said in a statement.

Mr Ng was appointed chairman of the board in Sept 2005. Under him, FairPrice's revenue doubled from S$1.4 billion in the 2005-2006 financial year to S$2.8 billion in 2012-2013.

The number of FairPrice stores also grew from 163 to 281, comprising 120 supermarkets and hypermarkets - which combine supermarkets with department stores - and 161 convenience stores.

In 2008, Mr Ng set up the FairPrice Foundation to advance the co-operative's philanthropic efforts, and served as the charity foundation's first chairman.

FairPrice has since donated S$76 million to the foundation, which goes towards causes such as helping the needy and advancing workers' welfare.

"It is my privilege to have served as chairman to FairPrice, alongside an accomplished executive team and an experienced board, all of whom continue to work diligently in the best interests of the co-operative," said Mr Ng, a former Nominated MP who also sits on the board of Singapore Press Holdings.

The 65-year-old also served as vice-president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) from 2009 until last year, and was also on its executive board for eight years before stepping down last September.

He was appointed chair of the IOC's finance commission in April.

Mr Tan Kian Chew, group chief executive officer of FairPrice, said: "It is through his consistent encouragement, guidance and leadership that FairPrice has achieved phenomenal success in the last nine years.

"When Mr Ng joined us... one of the first things he did was to commission a consultant to do a comprehensive organisational review of FairPrice.

This provided FairPrice with the organisational structure to grow our business and to fulfil our social mission more effectively."

Mr Tan added that it was a "privilege and honour" to have had Mr Ng as chairman.

Meanwhile, FairPrice Foundation on Wednesday pledged to donate two vans to NTUC Eldercare, one of the 12 social enterprises under NTUC Enterprise.

The vans, which cost S$85,000 each and are equipped with wheelchair lifters, will aid NTUC Eldercare in transporting elderly passengers between their homes and day-care centres or rehabilitation services while their caregivers are at work.

While NTUC has nine other vans, these two will be the first to be equipped with wheelchair lifters. They will be deployed at the Silver Circle day-care centres in Bukit Merah and Jurong Central.

Mr Chua Song Khim, executive director of NTUC Eldercare, said: "Some families find it difficult to take their elderly loved ones to the day-care centre before they go off to work, and to rush back to take them home after work. So, many of our clients find the transportation services we offer helpful."


This article was first published on JUNE 27, 2014.
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