Singaporean investment firm hopeful of Brunei venture

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Captain (rtd) Zailan Pehin Dato Mohd Don (L), advisor to the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry Brunei Darussalam, speaks with Louis Ang, the director and chairperson of Angus International Holdings, here in Brunei. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

Waqiuddin Rajak

Singaporean investment firm Angus International Holdings Limited is hoping that ongoing negotiation to relocate some of its operations and assets to Brunei will materialise at the end of this year.

The company, backed by Japanese investments, is looking to move one of its existing food manufacturing operations into the sultanate after identifying the country as a “safe and cost-efficient” business solution.

Initial discussions with the Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines East ASEAN Growth Association (BIMP-EAGA) business council have begun in Brunei last week and Angus will fly in its investors to the sultanate next month to follow up on the discussion.

The firm’s director and chairperson, Louis Ang (pictured), told The Bruneian that he is also in talks with the government to discuss on ways to proceed with the plan including procedures on Halal-related matters.

He said the discussion is still ongoing, and hoped that it could materialise sometime this year.

Angus, which has several investments in food manufacturing businesses in Singapore, wants to acquire a “small” piece of land to build and run a small-scale food production factory in Brunei.

“What is important is that, the factory should be able to facilitate all of the production processes locally, from A-to-Z; with raw materials and workforce highly sourced from the Bruneians,” Ang said.

He anticipated the need to recruit about 50 to 70 workers to efficiently run the factory, with locals and Japanese experts expected to hold supervising and managerial posts.

“It is also important for the finished products to be widely available in the local markets first before they can be exported,” he said.

A group photo that includes Angus International Holdings chairman Louis Ang (2nd R) with BIMP-EAGA Business Council members. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

The firm plans to produce Japanese food items and may start with Mochi, an increasingly popular Japanese snack before looking into expanding its range of products, he said.

While all of the processing is to be done in Brunei, Ang said the packaging, marketing and branding can be done in Singapore, considering that the city-state is a “window” to the world market.

He also shared the possibilities of having the products labeled with BIMP-EAGA brandings, for being made in Brunei and packaged in Singapore.

The Bruneian