Hopefully, the new NTUC fairprice group will not put profit above people

I read in today’s Straits Times that Fairprice, Foodfare and Kopitiam will be grouped under a new NTUC FairPrice Group.

According to the CEO of FairPrice, Seah Kian Peng, this consolidation is aimed at driving greater efficiency and catering to consumers’ evolving food needs. All that sounded so correct but I have my reservations.

Years ago, when NTUC Welcome (the predecessor to NTUC Fairprice) was founded, the objectives were to help stabilise the cost of living, prevent profiteering and keep grocery prices low so as to help our workers and Singaporeans at large.

I understand that consumers’ expectations and consumption habits have changed over the years. But still, NTUC Fairprice is a co-operative at heart. More than pouring accolades on them, I got a shock when I came to know that NTUC Fairprice made a profit of $379 million in 2017.

One must wonder: if it really operated its business model true to it’s original mission, how were they able to make that sort of profits?

Many publicly-listed companies don’t even make that type of profits. On paper, everything sounded so correct – such as being able to lower cost(s) through bulk procurement and cost saving benefits through economy of scale, etc.

In reality, I worry that they will be conveniently betray the trust that our citizens place in them. Can the new NTUC Fairprice Group solemnly pledge and assure all Singaporeans that they will always be guided by their sense of social responsibility and mission and will never put profits above all else.


Simon Lim




23 Responses to “Hopefully, the new NTUC fairprice group will not put profit above people”


    Wait long long.

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  • sheep signboard, sell dog meat:

    The Chinese call this “Hang a sheep as signboard”, but sell puppy meat behind. NTUC gotta do the right thing to get trust. Their words don’t mean anything anymore because they have lost the trust of ordinary folks.

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  • Sinkie:

    They already put profits above all else – they are cutting cost of issuing free plastic bags, making customers pay !

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  • oxygen:

    LOOKING AT ITS FINANCIAL STATEMENTS, IT IS VERY RICH but paid LESS THAN 0.002 percent tax on its pre-tax earnings.

    Take a look at item 7 in its 2018 annual report.


    In 2017, it pays even a puny percentage on tax 0.004 per cent on its pre-tax earnings.

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  • will go into their kpi:

    aiyoh. when professionals (highly paid ones ?) are managing enterprises for profit – things can be cheaper meh ? most likely, whatever better profit these big enterprises will go into their kpi where a significant chunk is to be absorbed as performance bonus into their own pay package lar ?

    all these food corks prices cheaper meh as compared to those in traditional kopi shops or hawker centres ? in fact and from observation over the past decades, all these “so-called professionally run” food enterprises are the very ones who have caused the prices of food to increase ? due to their big financial muscles to outbid (premium bids passed on to rent / food) smaller individual players / stallholders who have no choice but to rent (at higher rental) the individual stalls from them ?

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  • Foods for thought:

    I reckon that any leaders exempted from telling you the truths are liars? Can it be said that way, I ask?

    And like any living things, can be rotten, like a rotten apple. And when you least expected it, well it happened right in the AMKTC, the corruption case, smacked in the PM ward.

    Imagine, even smaller electricity retailers can be cheaper than the SP? And People flood to Malaysia for cheaper groceries.

    Then you can’t help but ask yourself why you need this PAPi for, right? Giving away close to $1 million dollars in a single day to foreign students to study here and flooding in FTs and displaced many people from their jobs.?

    Imagine your children, lost in pride and with their heads bowed down to foreigners. Do you want that in your own country?

    The PM told you suggesting that you have to fight for your lunch boxes.

    And, again you wonder why you need him for?. Isn’t he suppose to be protecting you in the first place?

    So, When we go to the polling station next, we should ask ourselves how we can help to make Singapore better again and protect our children future, our national identity and with our children proud and head up high again.

    Otherwise…… expect everything to hike, GST to rise and rise from 9% to 11% s…..

    Under the PAPi, literally no more loves, no more lives, have to steal lunch boxes, become gojek or hawkers and good paying jobs goes to FTs.

    How much are you paying to the GST? [based on 80% spent]

    Take Home Pay Last 5 Yrs @ 7% Next 5 Yrs @ 9% Total Lost

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  • Just don't vote pap:

    everyone knows pap lies. pap lies in order to make S$m for each other.

    in pap group think, S$600k pa is peanuts. in pap minds, S$1m pa is mediocre.

    since pap has absolute parleementary power, absolute cornering of every business in Spore, pap folks get bolder and bolder in S$m money grabbing.

    all these lying to grab S$m in Spore can stop, as soon as New Government forms and ntuc is renamed PSP Enterprise or such.

    lamenting is no use. since pap S$m folks ain’t going to stop S$m money grabbing since it is a self inflicting pain to stop S$m money grabbing in Spore.

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  • Boh Kia See:

    This is another instance of form over substance. The PAP is very good at this. They are good at creating a mirage that the feel the people like to hear but then the substance is totally different.

    You hear that in the declaration that the Election Boundaries Commission is independent. Well, the form is there; the substance may well be different.

    As a co-operative who ends up taking the profits–if it is not taxed?

    Another matter is that use of grass roots volunteer tailing SDP walk-abouts. The PA says she is not a member but could be a volunteer and they do not control volunteers. So there again, the form is there but the volunteer said she is reporting her findings to her superiors.

    It is this kind saying one thing and doing another that is the hallmark of the PAP. How do you trust such a bunch of profiteering thugs.

    VTO–the only way for Singaporeans and their future generation to survive with dignity.

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  • Darth Vader:

    Dear Simon,

    Stupid question time: WHICH PART of the pap philosophy “What’s wrong with collecting more money?” do you not understand?

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  • We not stupid lah!:

    We will all know after the GE.

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  • Sinkies so simple and trusting:

    “NTUC Fairprice is a co-operative at heart.”

    Singaporeans are so simple minded and trusting.
    Like lambs facing cunning foxes and ruthless wolves wearing white sheep skins.

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  • N.Jungne:

    LPPL lah.

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  • White Uniform Syndrome:

    Someone please tell them to be honest and stop calling themselves FAIRprice! It’s time they change their name to FATprice!

    Ask anyone who has patronised Ang Mo Supermart and they’d tell you that most of Ang Mo’s prices, don’t need to wait for offer are already much cheaper than FATprice’s. Some products that FATprice gave at their weekly offers are still even more expensive than Ang Mo’s regular prices. It’s a shame that FATprice is making so much profits when their initial mission is to help to keep prices low.

    However, to be honest, the only ‘service’ FATprice provides is probably convenience bcoz they’ve all the privileges to be located at popular and centralised areas. This is where CONNECTION has it’s advantage or members have its privileges!

    It’s a matter of time this country will be doomed if the white party continues to enjoy majority seats in parliament.

    GD Star Rating
  • Honourable Citizen:

    Comparisons made by independent sources in Singapore comparing prices of household items, both essential and non-essential, have proved that NTUC Fairprice is not the lowest or fairest as claimed. In fact NTUC is overcharging on nearly all the items in the recent article by Rebecca Liew on 23 Oct (AsiaOne). It is ridiculous for a social enterprise like NTUC Fairprice to openly overcharge but at the same time tell the public their mission is to help stabilize prices of household goods and prevents profiteering by un-ethical sellers. Some of the items sold by NTUC Fairprice are at least 50% more than the price sold by others sellers. NTUC Fairprice should understand and realize by now the ordinary Singaporeans are not as dumb as they (NTUC) believed. With the costs of living escalating geometrically while the overall wages increase arithmetically, ordinary Singaporeans are very sensitive to prices. NTUC Fairprice should re-examine their mission and be honest with the public.

    GD Star Rating
  • Ng TUC:

    If you go Fairprice, normally long queues. Like they cannot buy elsewhere.

    GD Star Rating
  • nizhemoshou:

    die liao , foodcourt prices is sure to go up higher n higher if pap win another 5 yrs term to squeeze Sgs in coming next GE.

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  • Harder Truths:



    That’s funny

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  • Simple Simon?:

    With election coming all kinds of gimmicks.

    Why now and not three years agak? Why all now?!

    Shows that they’re insincere. PAP never changes its spots.

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  • jack tan:

    Its too late to complaint.

    i had anticipated long ago.

    NTUC being strongly linked to govt agencies, under such unique relationships couple with low and controlled entry barrier, they can only grow and grow.

    We now have even limited choices to make since with such “monoploy” power,competitions are almost unheard of in Singapore.

    NOT only they now decide what Singaporean should buy for groceries, they now decide what Singaporeans should EAT and DRINK for breakfast, lunch and dinner !

    At what PRICE ?

    Whatever price they deemed is FAIR !

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  • Went to Japan:

    To buy kopitiam is to monopolise market, NTUC has been raising prices of things recently.

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  • Fair price please:

    Must ensure the price is fair.
    If not better change the name.

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  • Connivance beyond limits:

    If this Gomen could stash up our Medisave savings over the last three to four decades to the staggering sum of S$89 billion – and released merely $2 billion to us in medical expenses (ie. if Soon Juan and Tean are not spouting hot air and base lies) do you think that Gomen care that the “ntuc people’s cooperative” is now their self-rewarding corporation? Raise your hand those who don’t know the MOH is now corporatised under Temasek Holdings….
    Any more pseudopap cronies wanna keep making fools out of us all? Your public accounting is opaque and you are accountable only to yourselves in spending our cpf savings….

    GD Star Rating
  • Darth Vader:

    Hey everyone here,

    Since ntuc fairprice stinks, maybe we should all just rename it ntuc FARTPRICE?

    Actually, I’d rename it ntuc F**KPRICE, except that I had many comments here censored or deleted simply for stating facts about tkl…

    GD Star Rating

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