Together with a team of diverse backgrounds, Nison Chan, Ryan Sim and Joel Liew run We The People (WTP), the world’s only chain of concept stores to exclusively promote, educate and retail products that were made possible with crowdfunding. WTP opened their first physical store in 2016, with only 14 products for sale. Over the years, WTP expanded and by 2017, ran 5 stores across the island from Orchard Central and Westgate to i12Katong and Metro Centrepoint, with their flagship store located at Millenia Walk.
The growth spurt encouraged the team to explore opportunities beyond Singapore and began seeking ways to set up stores overseas such as Korea and US. However, they were faced with a hurdle when they realised that they required help in turning their plans into reality.
Nison was referred to Yiting, one of our Business Advisors, who sat down with them to better understand their future plans to internationalize. Through the consultation, Yiting recommended LSP Global, who is not only familiar with the US market but could assist WTP in expanding into the country, including developing a franchise strategy and manual for the company.
“Expanding overseas takes a lot of work and it is crucial for a company to have a strong foothold of the market it’s venturing into and how they plan to go about with acquiring a new target audience. Having a franchise strategy in place allows the company to follow a framework that reduces wastage and minimize risks,” explained Yiting.
In an effort to enhance their expansion plans, Yiting introduced the Global Company Partnership (GCP) grant to Nison and his team. The GCP grant enabled WTP to defray costs of engaging LSP Global as well as supported the company in its manpower development.
Through Yiting’s assistance, WTP successfully secured the CGP grant in March this year and are in the process of setting up their first store in the US.
“Yiting was very quick to fully understand our company’s specific needs. She connected us to a reliable consultant who could help us through the franchise process step-by-step, especially since it involved a new market. Yiting also shared with us on the available government grants that we could leverage on, which was something we didn’t know beforehand,” shared Nison.