SME Champions is a series featuring the people behind Singapore’s homegrown enterprises. It tells the stories of their relentless pursuits towards success and the things that keep them going.
Helmed by power duo, Kedan and Fion, the couple started from a humble home-based business before they moved to their current central kitchen.
Their signature product, the ‘Love, Tingkat!’ features nourishing home-cooked meals specifically catered for parents who may not have time to cook for their children.
In 2017, when she was sending her son to school, Fion noticed many kids hanging around the food court to get their breakfast or lunch instead of eating at home.
Diagnosed with gestational diabetes then, she knew how important it was for kids to have nutritious meals. That was when the idea of home-based catering for busy parents struck her.
“Just as I had this idea on my mind, someone posted a message in the Facebook group I was in, asking if anyone knows of a caterer who can cater meals for her kid. I immediately responded and took up the job to earn some pocket money,” she chuckled.
After her first stint as a caterer, Fion started to get more enquiries about her home-cooked meals. Orders came flooding in until she had to move to a central kitchen to fulfill them.
1. The Chef With Many Hats
At the start, the home-based catering business was manageable for the couple because customers would get anything they cooked on that day.
However, when they decided to expand, they had to offer more dish varieties and deal with a string of rejections.
“For a young company, no chef wanted to join us, no supplier wanted to supply us, and no driver wants to deliver our meals,” she sighed.
She recalls the days where she and her husband had to wake up early in the morning to shop for the ingredients, cook the meals and deliver it to their customers’ doorsteps.
“Instead of just wearing his chef’s hat, my husband had to wear his delivery boy cap to send the Tingkats. He cuts, cooks, packs and delivers,” she giggled.
Her husband, Kedan, a former chef at restaurants such as Hiroki 88 and Jewel @ Mount Faber, now heads the kitchen in FattyDaddyFattyMummy.
2. Manpower Issues
Fion also shared that the lack of manpower was one of the biggest challenges for them.
With the rise of delivery apps, Fion found it hard to get drivers who would deliver her meals.
Most drivers prefer to take on individual jobs from these apps because it offers them better rates per trip.
But in fact, if the drivers chose to work for Fion and deliver the meals to just one area, they may get higher total earnings.
Moreover, it was also difficult to hire local employees who are willing to take on the job of a food packer.
Faced with these limitations, Fion and Kedan decided to reposition their menu to provide nourishing meals in tiffin carriers, instead of plastic containers.
This was how the Love, Tingkat! subscription-based meal delivery came about.
Relying on their Peranakan roots and fond childhood memories, the couple designed a range of wholesome dishes for their Love,Tingkat! menu.
As you uncover each tier or Tingkat, you may find soups, and protein and vegetable dishes made fresh with non-processed and non-canned food. These dishes are also cooked with less salt and oil and no MSG.
The menu is only repeated on alternate months instead of alternate weeks so that you won’t grow tired of their food.
Available for delivery from Monday to Friday (except for public holidays), you can choose from four different packages for lunch or dinner:
· 10 days (5 days a week)
· 12 days (3 days a week)
· 16 days (4 days a week)
· 20 days (5 days a week)
With FattyDaddyFattyMummy’s Love, Tingkat!, you no longer have to fret over what to cook for your kids and family.
When I asked about what the future holds for them, Fion shared a multitude of exciting ideas with me.
After overcoming many challenges and being one of the main food sponsors of the National Day Parade in 2019, nothing, not even the pandemic, is holding her back from bringing her plans to fruition.
One of the new concepts they are working on would be the private dining experience.
“Instead of going out, you can now enjoy beautifully plated dishes in the comfort of your own home by a private chef!” she said heartily.
Armed with zeal and valour, she hopes to share their homemade recipes with more families in Singapore, one Tingkat at a time.
Address: 15 Woodlands Loop, Singapore 738322
Telephone: 6100 0087
Opening Hours: Mon – Fri 9am-6pm, Sat 9am – 1pm
Jennifer loves helping SMEs in their business growth journey. She is also an epicurean and has perpetual wanderlust. During the weekend, she weaves poems out of thin air and buries herself in books.