Labeled as among the leading food capitals in Asia, Singapore boasts an immensely wide range of mouth-watering cuisines. With its multiracial, multilingual and multicultural society, it has over generations cultivated and developed a unique and delectable Singapore cuisine. In fact, many choose Singapore as one of their travel destinations because of the vast variety of food to enjoy. Besides, it has a business advantage like to buy and sell a restaurant.
The food industry in Singapore has contributed enormously to the nation’s annual GDP. That is contributing almost S$8 billion in annual sales turnover to the GDP. More than a third of this revenue is attributable to restaurants; one-tenth to catering services and fast food joints and remaining to the famous hawker centre and food court establishments. In view of the vast potential, new restaurants and cafes pop up in every corner of town. However, the downside to this is numerous outlets also close down in the same period.
The F&B industry is a lucrative business in Singapore not only for residents but also for foreigners, especially so due to the absence of entry barriers. There are very crucial aspects of the food business you need to know about before venturing into it. The process of setting up a restaurant or cafe here is not as complex. After registering your business, you will need to apply for a license. In this case, you would require a food shop license and a liquor license if you wish to sell alcohol in your establishment. There can be other licenses and issued involved with GST, Service tax and work passes.
The next major step is getting the necessary staff for your outlet. Staff in most restaurants in Singapore consists of both local and foreign workers due to the fact that most Singaporeans don’t like to work in this industry. For foreign staff, you will need to apply for a relevant work pass which is subject to approval by manpower authorities. Staffing has been a common hurdle the food and beverage industry in Singapore has been struggling with for the last few years. Not only are many locals demanding higher pay and simply not willing to work long hours, but the foreign hiring quota is also constantly being limited, making hiring quite a nightmare in Singapore.
On the bright side, though setting up a restaurant or cafe may be an expensive affair, the government provides many grants and incentives which include the Productivity and Innovation Credit scheme (PIC). Additionally, SPRING, an agency under the Ministry of Trade and Industry has countless variations of grants which can provide subsidies up to 70% of the cost when applied to the relevant areas. Also, before pumping in tonnes of money into your business, you must make sure your outlet is strategically located to draw in the crowd. Many new food entrepreneurs tend to compromise on location either due to cheaper rent, or impatience. Thereby, come to regret it eventually.
Though you might save on rent initially, you will spend much more effort and money on marketing your poor location. Finally, no amount of marketing and branding will be successful if the food itself does not impress your customers. If you are taking over an existing business, hiring someone who can replicate the previous dishes can be highly challenging. Besides, it is something which should be considered in the initial stages of start-up. The menu must be updated from time to time. Thus, it is recommended that there should be new, fresh and innovative courses introduced periodically.
Finding the right restaurant or cafe for a takeover can be easily done by browsing through classified websites www.easybuysellbusiness.com in Singapore. The F&B in Singapore is certainly worth venturing into. However, sheer determination without a formal plan is foolhardy and leads to failure. It would be best to engage the services of professionals to ensure the right advice and guidance. If you want to make your dreams a reality, you need to ask for their assistance.