Name of Recipient:
Mr. Alan Ler
Knowledge Computers Pte Ltd was set up in year 2003. It is mainly involved in the trading of used equipments. Its director, Mr Alan Ler, saw the need for such services within the region and decided to take a chance and delve into the entrepreneur world. “We buy from other countries the used equipments, refurbish them and export to other countries thereafter,” Mr Alan explained about his concept of work.
Being in the engineering field previously, Mr Alan wanted to be in an industry whereby he was familiar with and thus when he observed that there was such a golden opportunity back then, coupled with his expertise in this industry, he had no qualms about starting this business at all.
However, as the concept is still relatively new in the region, finding a ready pool of clients was the biggest challenge. “Most people in Asia still do not like to use used equipments,” Mr Alan disclosed. Furthermore, having sufficient cash flow and finding a suitable supplier were some of the other issues plaguing Mr Alan initially.
Nevertheless, to solve his problems, Mr Alan decided to fly overseas directly to meet the suppliers and to gain their trust so as to secure some deals. Also, to explore potential clients, Mr Alan needed to find certain markets that do not have many choices available in the domestic market and yet needed cheap equipments because it is exactly such markets that would be interested in doing business with Mr Alan. Finally, to ensure the company doesn’t face capital issues, he secured loans from banks.
“To be different from others, you need to be special,” Mr Alan espoused. Hence, to differentiate his company, he decided to specialise and be focused only on certain brands so that they can always be acquainted with the brands whenever clients demand for such products. “Rather than be a jack of all trade, I aim to be the king of the battlefield!” Mr Alan said with aplomb.
Sharing about some of the bigger achievements of the company, Mr Alan cited the IMF events in 2008 and the F1 race in 2007 & 2008 whereby the equipments were rented from his company and they amounted to about 300 to 400 equipments in total. Within the short period of time, they had to set up the equipments for them and made sure the event could be carried out seamlessly without any glitches. “Such big clients were the turning points for my company,” a proud Mr Alan exclaimed.
To Mr Alan, entrepreneurship is about “creating something new that is different from the rest and it can help improve the society.” When he decided to have his own business, he wanted to create a legacy that can be passed down the generations so that his family can have a sustainable and healthy income with a comfortable life. Sharing about his views about the recipes for success, Mr Alan espoused, “You need to manage and motivate your employees. They are the ones that ensure the company grow. To be successful, one needs leadership quality to let people respect you and work whole heartily for you.”
For potential entrepreneurs, Mr Alan has some questions that he wanted to pose on the minds of those who felt they could be entrepreneurs so that they can gauge for themselves their suitability.
How much are you prepared to lose when you start a business? How long you can sustain without making profit? How much time are you willing to put into the business? Profits, what kind of profits are you looking at? “Monetary? Or other achievements as well?”
Divulging his future plans, Mr Alan intends to diversify his operations and focus more on service such as installations, customer equipment maintenance, rental etc instead of just trading of equipments. With such an ambitious and people centric leader at the helm, the future certainly looks rosy for Knowledge Computers Ptd Ltd.
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