We are one of the pioneers in the refrigeration and air-conditioning business in Singapore with more than 58 years of experience in the HVAC&R industry.
Our history can be traced back to 1953 when Loh Ee Ming, our founder and Non-executive Chairman, started a sole proprietorship to principally engage in the business of providing repair services of refrigerators at a leased shop located at Bencoolen Street, Singapore. In March 1964, Loh Ee Ming, together with Ng Tat Keong and Chan Tuck Kwye, incorporated our Company under the Companies Act as a private limited company under the name of “Far East Refrigeration (Pte.) Limited”.
In 1966, we were principally engaged in the manufacturing and distribution of commercial refrigerators as well as the trading of related spare parts with a staff strength of five employees. In the same year, as part of our expansion plans, we shifted from our leased premises at Bencoolen Street to our own premises at 230 Serangoon Road, Singapore 218081 (“230 Serangoon Road”).
In 1967, Loh Ee Ming saw huge demand for commercial refrigerators in Malaysia and established our first overseas subsidiary, Far East Malaysia, with a staff strength of approximately 20 employees to focus primarily on the manufacturing and distribution of commercial refrigerators and installation of cold rooms, as well as trading of refrigeration and air-conditioning parts in Johor, Kuala Lumpur and Penang in Malaysia.
In 1971, our staff strength increased to approximately 15 employees in Singapore and we purchased a property at 1120 Serangoon Road, Singapore 328205 (“1120 Serangoon Road”), with an estimated gross floor area of 1,400 sqft, as our office, service workshop and additional warehouse for storage.
In 1973, to cater to our expansion requirements, we sold 230 Serangoon Road and moved to a leased premise located at 3A Kinta Road, Singapore, which has an estimated gross floor area of approximately 4,000 sqft whilst maintaining our showroom at 1120 Serangoon Road. This new premise was used for our sales and marketing activities in relation to commercial refrigerators as well as refrigeration and airconditioning parts.
In 1976, we acquired Far East KL and Safety Enterprises. Far East KL was focused on the manufacturing and distribution of commercial refrigerators, whilst Safety Enterprises was focused on distribution of imported refrigeration and air-conditioning parts in Kuala Lumpur.
In 1979, to cater to the increase in our export business volume, we acquired Elektro-Metall (Singapore) Private Limited (“Elektro-Metall”), which owned a factory and warehouse with an estimated gross floor area of 25,112 sqft at 5 Third Lok Yang Road, Singapore 628000 to enhance our warehouse and storage capacities. This factory became our regional logistics hub distributing our products in larger volumes to various countries in SEA, including Malaysia. In 2004, the business and assets of Elektro-Metall were subsequently transferred to our Group and in 2008, Elektro-Metall was dissolved.
In 1980, as our business continued to grow in Malaysia, we established Far East JB to consolidate our manufacturing facility from Far East Malaysia. In the same year, we established Far East Penang to focus on marketing and distribution of commercial refrigerators as well as refrigeration and air-conditioning parts in Penang.
In 1983, we acquired Far East Maju, a company located in Kuala Lumpur to principally engage in the manufacture of condensers and assembly of condensing units.
In 1988, Loh Ee Ming saw the business potential in the PRC and in order to reduce our dependence on the Singapore and Malaysia markets, we incorporated Far East Refrigeration (Hong Kong) Limited (“Old FER HK”), which acted as a business platform for our Group to the PRC market.
In 1990, Steven Loh (our CEO and Executive Director, and son of Loh Ee Ming), joined our Group as a retail sales executive. In 2003, he became our Group managing director.
In 1992, we streamlined our Group's businesses to focus on distribution of refrigeration and airconditioning systems and products and terminated the manufacturing of commercial refrigerators due to intense competition in this business segment.
In 1993, as our business continued to expand, we recognised the importance of branding. To this end, we created the “Fascold” brand for our manufactured range of products such as condensers, condensing units, evaporators, and custom coils. These products were manufactured by Far East Maju.
In the same year, we acquired FE&B, which was principally engaged in the sales, marketing and distribution of our products in South Malaysia.
In 1994, in order to garner greater market share and strengthen our market position in Malaysia, we incorporated Far East Kuching in Kuching (the capital of East Malaysian state of Sarawak) to focus primarily on the retailing and trading of refrigeration and air-conditioning parts, relevant spare parts and components in East Malaysia.
In 1994, we adopted a computerised inventory system, ERP program, which enabled us to have better control of our inventories and monitor the movement of our inventories on a real time basis. In 1995, we introduced the fully computerised commercial Stock Control Inventory Management and Accounting System (SCIMAS) to manage our inventories more efficiently and to provide information on our products to our customers on a timely basis.
In 1998, we incorporated RSP to focus primarily on Energy Management Systems (EMS), refrigeration monitoring as well as control and alarm management systems to cater to emerging demand for new technology within the HVAC&R industry. With the establishment of RSP, we are equipped with the advanced refrigeration technologies and online monitoring systems that help food-related companies to comply with the HACCP requirements. We are also currently providing refrigeration monitoring as well as control and alarm management systems to HSA (Singapore Blood Bank) and several cord blood companies.
Over the years, we strive to maintain a quality management system to ensure only quality products and services are provided to our customers. As a testament to our commitment, our Company was awarded the ISO9001:2008 certification for assembly and trading of refrigeration parts since May 2002. Our subsidiaries, Far East Maju and Safety Enterprises have also obtained the ISO9001:2008 certifications since October 2004.
In 2003, we carried out a rebranding exercise and changed our in-house brand name to “Eden”. This was part of our vision to launch a comprehensive range of innovative in-house manufactured heat exchangers which uses high energy-efficient coil technologies. This was part of our Green Program which brings us into the next phase of expansion, in line with the increasing environmental awareness in providing fresh and hygienic food storage solutions to the community.
Our “Eden” brand of products, in particular, our “Eden” brand of heat exchangers, are manufactured by our subsidiary, Far East Maju. Our “Eden” brand of products cover a wide range of international standard and quality heat exchangers, including evaporators, brine coolers, condensers and custom coils, which are extensively used in commercial, light industrial and marine applications. Today, “Eden” has a comprehensive product range of G4 heat exchangers.
In 2003, in conjunction with our 50th anniversary since the commencement of our business, and to further expand our operations, we acquired a new building at 112 Lavender Street, Singapore 338728, with an estimated gross floor area of approximately 20,839 sqft (the “Far East Refrigeration Building”). The Far East Refrigeration Building serves as our head office and retail centre.
From 2004 to 2005, our Group underwent a series of corporate restructuring exercises to achieve our corporate objectives of becoming a comprehensive provider of refrigeration and air-conditioning systems and products, and to streamline and rationalise our corporate structure and business activities of our Group.
In December 2005, we incorporated a new Hong Kong subsidiary, Far East HK, to take over the business and operations of Old FER HK. In 2009, we disposed of Old FER HK to Karen Loh. Please refer to the “Interested Person Transactions – Past Interested Person Transactions” section of this Offer Document for further details.
In 2008, our “Eden” brand of heat exchangers were successfully tested in the laboratory of Ziehl-Abegg, which is one of Europe's accredited laboratories. The results of the tests certified that our products' specifications, such as noise level and air flow performance, were in line with market's requirements. These certifications are a further testimony of the quality of our products. In particular, our “Eden” brand of heat exchangers are widely recognised and used by well-known international and regional retail chains, including Carrefour, Metro, Tesco and Giant. We were also one of the major suppliers of refrigeration equipment to Singapore's two Integrated Resorts, namely Resorts World Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands.
In 2009, we expanded our business into the servicing, repair and overhauling of Bitzer's reciprocating and screw compressors by establishing Green Point through a franchise program with Bitzer Refrigeration Asia Limited (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bitzer, a leading manufacturer of compressors in Germany).
In view of the rapid growth of residential and commercial air-conditioning business in Singapore, we incorporated Edenkool in May 2009, to primarily focus on providing air-conditioning materials (such as copper pipes, PVC trunkings, electrical wires, refrigerants, class O and 1 closed cell insulation pipes and sheets) to the residential and commercial air-conditioning markets.
As part of our business strategy to expand regionally, we obtained a licence from the Vietnam Department of Industry and Trade in September 2010 to set up a new representative office in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam to serve as our Group's gateway into the Indochina market (namely Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar).
In May 2011, we established a representative office in Indonesia to provide sales and marketing support and assistance for our distributors and dealers in Indonesia.
Since our establishment, our Group has grown rapidly and we have evolved into a comprehensive provider of refrigeration and air-conditioning systems and products in the HVAC&R industry. We have grown from a provider of repair services of refrigerators to a distributor of a wide range of agency products for several prominent manufacturers in the HVAC&R industry, as well as a manufacturer and distributor of heat exchangers and condensing units under our own brand “Eden”. As at the Latest Practicable Date, we have 118 employees, with subsidiaries in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong as well as representative offices in Vietnam and Indonesia.
On 18 March 2011, we changed our name to “Far East Group Pte. Ltd.”. On 25 July 2011, our Company was converted into a public company and changed our name to “Far East Group Limited”. For further details on the share capital of our Company, please refer to the “General Information on our Group – Share Capital” section of this Offer Document.