Ying Ker Lou, staying true through 13 years of authenticity<br>迎客楼,13年初心不变

RM 270,914
Investors 0
Minimum Target Amount RM 500,000
Maximum Target Amount RM 1,000,000
Funding Period
18/12/2019 - 15/02/2020

Ying Ker Lou

They say that the act of enjoying a delicious meal is a therapeutic experience, but enjoying a meal that tastes like home-cooked food is far more therapeutic for the soul.

Be it Hakka Lei Cha, Braised Pork Belly with Black Fungus, Stuffed Bean Curd, Yam Abacus, Pork Knuckle with Ginger and Sweet Rice Vinegar, these are all captivating and mouth-watering authentic Hakka dishes that makes one return to them again and again.

 

 


My Story

The soul of a restaurant runs through my veins

I’m Albert, the founder of the Hakka restaurant chain - Ying Ker Lou.

 

 

I grew up in a restaurant. In my recollection of my early years, my childhood was peppered with an abundance of flavoursome food aromas. That can be attributed to my mother who not only loves eating but also love cooking. In fact, she operated various types of restaurants selling - Wonton noodles, economy rice, stir-fry, Teochew porridge, curry fish head, Malay cuisine, Indian cuisine, pastries and more…

I remember that when school holidays came around, I had to help out in the restaurants doing all sorts of miscellaneous work. After graduating from the university, I took up the job of a wine sales representative before moving on to a role at the National Rice Paddy Bureau (BERNAS).

In a blink of an eye, 7 years went by. In 2006, I decided to resign from my job in a management position at the Bureau to start my own business. In the beginning, numerous business ideas crossed my mind, but there was one thing I was sure of - I was not going to start a restaurant.

Then one day, while in a conversation with my uncle about my entrepreneurial intentions, he quizzed me on my refusal to endeavour to the food and beverage business, after all, “The soul of a restaurant runs through your veins!”, he exclaimed.

It wasn’t until he put it that way that I started to ponder upon what he said. What could be the reason for my dismissal to the idea of opening a restaurant? After much reflection, I fathomed that it was likely caused by the feeling of dreaded obligation that had accumulated during my childhood when I had to help out during the school holidays - a rare chance for a break from school yet I was unable to play, had to perform unpaid duties and was incredibly exhausted!

After narrowing down and addressing the cause of my apprehension, opening a restaurant became the natural choice for starting up a business.

My founding team was my family - my wife and my parents. We are a group of Hakka descendants who love the Hakka cuisine with a passion. It was our dream to advocate the Hakka culture through its dishes.

 

 

In March of 2006, Ying Ker Lou officially opened at The Curve. During that time, Hakka dishes were mostly available and produced by family-unit stalls, so no Hakka cuisine brand existed in the market. Ying Ker Lou was the first.

 


My Project

Ying Ker Lou - The place to come for Hakka cuisine

The restaurants’ name Ying Ker Lou indicates that this is a place that welcomes everyone to enjoy and savour the Hakka cuisine. ‘Ker’ indicates the welcoming of guests and depicts part of the word “Hakka” which means guests. ‘Lou’, refers to the symbol of the Hakka people - a century-old housing area that is the Hakka Tulou, standing with grey tiles and yellow walls. While designing the interior of the restaurants, we incorporated the elements of the Hakka Tulou for our customers to truly bask in the Hakka experience through visual aesthetics.

 

 

The traditional Hakka cuisine emphasises on certain taste characteristics, namely ‘savoury’, ‘fat’, ‘fragrance’, and ‘thoroughly cooked’. In other words, having strong flavours is one of the main attributes of the Hakka cuisine. This has a close correlation and is largely due to the living environment of our Hakka ancestors. They led lives carrying out agriculture-related work of heavy manual labour so it was vital for productivity to acquire great amounts of energy from their food intake to be able to sustain their health and strength. As one can tell of their customs from a saying describing Hakka cuisine - meals would lose their relish without the essential components like pork, chicken, duck and pork knuckles.

 

 

Now in modern times, people have grown to be more conscious of healthy eating. In acknowledgement and support of this state of mind, we made some adjustments to introduce healthy and delicious Hakka dishes while maintaining the integrity of the Hakka cuisine’s foundation. This was done by introducing no artificial flavouring, less oil and less salt while preserving the dishes’ freshness, fragrance and richness. It has always been our intention to serve healthy yet authentic Hakka food to our customers.

 

 

As we all know, ingredients are the root of all delicacies. We don’t compromise when it comes to using only fresh and high-quality ingredients.

At the beginning of Ying Ker Lou’s operations, my father personally made trips to the market every day to select the finest ingredients. As the restaurants scaled, we made adjustments to our process and started working with carefully selected suppliers. By doing so, we are able to have a consistent guarantee of the quality as well as a stable flow of supply. Ying Ker Lou’s contemporary approach to the Hakka cuisine is the combination of using first-rate skills to handle high-quality ingredients.

The Hakka Lei Cha has many ingredients and is usually put together by us in this form - combining chopped leek, string beans, chives, cabbage and other in-season vegetables along with minced radish, dried bean curd, peanuts and sesame. Then by mixing with a sparing amount of anchovies to complement the dish’s freshness, this modest yet hearty meal is ready to be consumed. The ingredients are cut into consistent minced sizes to bring out the best of its flavours. The knife work of preparing the ingredients demonstrates the chefs’ skills and experience.

The Hakka Lei Cha soup base is constructed by boiling a blend of basil, mint, quality green tea leaves and sesame, in addition to a mix of six to seven vegetable grains. The fragrant of the aftertaste is unforgettable and stays with you after downing a bowl of it.

At the restaurant, the Hakka Lei Cha is produced in small quantities. We only produce more when our supply finishes. No matter when you arrive, you’ll always get to enjoy fresh Hakka Lei Cha. Besides, we also offer Hakka Lei Cha Fried Rice for those who love Hakka Lei Cha and would like to try more variations of it.

 

 

The Hakka Yam Abacus is made using the highest grade yam. When yam is peeled, it’s necessary to continue peeling about 30% more of the outer layers to ensure that the yam wouldn’t cause one’s mouth to itch. Once the yam is thoroughly steam-cooked, a special process to seal in the yam’s flavour is required. After that, flour is added and the yam is pinched into small abacus-shaped pieces before frying them with ten other ingredients. The entire process of handmade production takes about 5 hours. Although it takes time, there are no shortcuts when it comes to producing such delicacy and that’s something that we are clear about.

 

 

The four stuffed dishes of the Hakka cuisine are made by stuffing fine pork, mackerel, some salted fish and more, into bean curd, bitter gourd, chilli and eggplant. Then fry in shallow oil before drizzling a special sauce over them. Finally, we place them into clay pots and braise them.

 

 

The Hakka Style Braised Pork Belly with Black Fungus is another classic Hakka dish. It is also one of Ying Ker Lou’s most popular dishes. Since the opening of the chain, we’ve sold over 4 million servings. We marinate pork belly with fermented bean curd and rose wine for half a day then deep fry it. We then place it into a clay pot, add black fungus to it and braise over low fire. It is my personal favourite and a dish that many customers have remarked of its homemade taste.

 

 

Besides the aforementioned dishes, Braised Sliced Pork Belly with Preserved Mustard Vegetable, Stewed Pork Knuckle with Ginger and Sweet Rice Vinegar and Drunken Kampong Chicken with Ginger & Rice Wine are also some of the Ying Ker Lou’s most popular dishes.

Ying Ker Lou also offers traditional Hakka dim sum such as the Ho Po Chives Dumplings, Hakka Bamboo Shoot Dumplings, Mei Chai Bao, Meizhou Carrot Balls with Minced Pork, Chu Ye Ban, Steamed Rice Cake with Pickled Radish, Mochi and more. We are full of Hakka flavours and Hakka warmth.

 

 

To provide more variety for local fans of the Hakka cuisine, we have also travelled to places such as Taiwan, Hong Kong and Guang Dong to experience their local Hakka dishes first-hand.

Traditional Hakka Flavours

Since the start of the restaurant, we have accumulated crowds of loyal customers. Some say that Ying Ker Lou ignites memories of home and has precious traditional flavours.

There have been many patrons who after tasting our food, had decided to give us their families’ secret recipes that have been passed down for generations so that through Ying Ker Lou, those Hakka dishes may continue to live on. The Meizhou Carrot Balls with Minced Pork that is on our menu comes from an 80-year old elder’s recipe.

Their trust in us and generous act of sharing their recipes moved us deeply. It fortified our passion and drive to continue to offer quality Hakka cuisine.

This year, Ying Ker Lou was awarded the Supreme Cuisine Brand Award by the World Gourmet. We were also named as one of Malaysia Tatler’s Best Restaurants for the ninth consecutive years.

 

 

We’re thankful for the countless media channels that have documented and reported on Ying Ker Lou’s story.


Why Crowdfunding?

Moving forward with scaling and expansion

As a result of the combined dedication of our two generations, Ying Ker Lou now has six restaurants situated in Kuala Lumpur’s megamalls.

At the end of the year, we are travelling south to launch our seventh restaurant in Johor Bahru. Next year, we will be opening our eighth restaurant in Kota Kemuning at an 80-table ballroom.

At the same time, we are preparing to upgrade the facilities in our central kitchen to ensure the efficiency of food production. From the first branch to the eighth, Ying Ker Lou’s has stayed true to its original vocation and we shall continue to provide healthy and authentic Hakka dishes to our customers.

Looking back at our journey, we are incredibly grateful to our customers who have given us the support and love that we needed along the way. Which is why Ying Ker Lou has decided to open up equity crowdfunding as an opportunity for our supporters and friends to move forward with us and reap from the resources that you sow.

After 13 years of hard work, this is the first time that we are running crowdfunding. We look forward to sharing Ying Ker Lou’s fruitful results with you.

 


Team


Term Sheet


Founder Pitch Deck


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Risk and challenges

  • Final number of shares issued may vary after adjustment for oversubscriptions, investment incentives and private placement.
  • The proposed pre-money valuation of this project may be higher than the market consensus. You may be exposed to a higher level of investment risk where you may risk overpaying for the investment that may cause material impact on your potential investment return, if any at all.

Disclaimer by Securities Commission

  • No shares will be allotted or issued based on this document after six months from the closing of the offer period.
  • This issue, offer or invitation for the offering is a proposal not requiring authorisation of the Securities Commission under section 212(8) of the CMSA 2007.
  • This document has not been reviewed by the Securities Commission Malaysia. The Securities Commission does not recommend nor assumes responsibility for any information including any statement, opinion or report disclosed in relation to this fund raising exercise and makes no representation as to its accuracy or completeness. The Securities Commission expressly disclaims any liability whatsoever for any loss howsoever arising from or in reliance upon the whole or any part of the information disclosed.
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