More networking & less lip service needed

The difference between Malay commerce guilds with others is that the other commerce guilds get right down to the meat i.e. they exchange information and they network. Malay commerce guilds members among others rather talk about cars, show off their classy business suits and probably brag about houses or women. Trust me, I know! Since my students days, I always try to make it a point to browse around during this so-called Malay commerce guilds networking bash. Of course wearing no more than a worn out polo shirt and slacks, these posh big wigs usually ignore me, thinking I am some kind of runner for a politician or worse, a beggar for some sponsorship.

Whilst small time businessmen tried their best to mingle around, the more or less ‘successful’ ones would laugh loudly with gibberish talks of politics. Usually affter an hour or so, they began to criticize the government. “The government should this and that…” “Why didn’t the government do this or that…?” You get my drift. I guess they have no faults of their own like this classic Malay business story I am going to tell you (true story!)…

Once upon a time in PJ Old Town, there were throngs of Malay eatery owners at yon food court. Being Malays, they mostly sell the same stuff. One day, one of the sellers, who sold Western food, gathered these Malay businessmen and said “Here we are… 20 of us selling food stuff. But each of us is buying the raw materials from different suppliers. Basically we buy the same stuff. Because each of us buy from the different suppliers, we are actually buying at retail pricies and hence the hefty prices. Why not we pool all our purchasing needs and appoint one supplier so we can get wholesale prices. With decrease in raw material prices, our profit margin will increase.

The Malay businessmen on hearing this couldn’t agree more to this logic. By the end of the short meeting, they agreed to appoint one contractor. The few days afterwards went perfect. Profits soared significantly and generally they were happy. The one fine day, one of the Malay food court owners called for a meeting and said the following

“I want to know now that our profits are high and all, WHY DID WE APPOINT THAT PARTICULAR SUPPLIER?”.
Then one of the asked back, “Pray do tell, what is wrong with that supplier?”.
Then the first Malay food seller answered “The problem is I know of this one supplier and I THINK HE SHOULD GET OUR BUYING CONTRACTS. Why should our current supplier supply us?”.

Our hero was frankly puzzled by the logic of the first food seller’s question. What was wrong with the current supplier??? Then suddenly all of them who gathered began to voice out that their choice of supplier should get the contract. In the end, after much heated quarreling, they all reverted back to their own suppliers and purchase individually and hence most of their profits are gone all because of one person couldn’t see others enjoying some good business supplying others with low bulk prices! Our hero hang his head low and continued with his business several months before closing shop. Most of the Malay stall owners had closed shop too before that obviously because of increasing cost and probably could not stand which each other.

Such story is often lived and relived by my people every day. Sadly I have no answer for this predicament. Nobody seems to have the answer for that matter!
Bersatu kita teguh, bercerai kita roboh. Bagai aur dengan tebing. Bagai isi dan kuku.


DPMMS bantu usahawan Melayu

SHAH ALAM 19 Feb. – Seramai 40 usahawan Melayu bakal diberi peluang menceburi bidang pembekalan bahan binaan secara francais dengan syarikat Homepower DIY Sdn. Bhd. (Homepower DIY).

Program yang dilakukan dengan kerjasama Dewan Muda Dewan Perniagaan Melayu Malaysia Selangor (DPMMS) itu turut mendapat sokongan Majlis Amanah Rakyat (Mara).

Naib Yang Dipertua DPMMS, Datuk Mohd. Said Mat Saman berkata, walaupun bidang pembekalan bahan binaan bukan sesuatu yang baru, tetapi program kerjasama yang dijalankan itu memberi peluang luas kepada usahawan Melayu yang selama ini lebih berminat menjadi kontraktor.

Katanya, pendekatan tersebut juga memberi pilihan kepada usahawan Melayu yang ingin menukar bidang perniagaan mereka ekoran kegawatan ekonomi yang melanda sekarang.

”Kontraktor yang ingin bertukar kepada perniagaan lain boleh mengambil peluang untuk menceburi perniagaan ini yang sememangnya ada kena mengena dengan bidang mereka.

”Dengan sokongan pihak Mara yang akan membantu memberikan modal sebanyak RM250,000, pastinya mereka yang menceburinya mampu beroleh kejayaan,” kata beliau.

Beliau berkata demikian kepada pemberita selepas merasmikan pelancaran Perniagaan Francais Dalam Bidang Pembekalan Bahan Binaan di sini semalam.

Turut hadir Pengerusi Dewan Muda DPMMS, Agil Faisal Ahmad Fadil, Timbalan Pengarah Mara Selangor, Amer Rahmat dan Pengerusi Homepower DIY, Datuk Mohd. Rosli Abdul Aziz.

Mohd. Rosli berkata, beliau yakin semua peserta francais akan berjaya berdasarkan kejayaan 16 francais Homepower DIY yang telah dibuka sebelum ini.

Beliau berkata, selain berkonsepkan jualan runcit yang berterusan dan Homepower DIY juga mengurangkan kos buruh dan harga barangannya kompetitif.

”Dengan pengalaman sejak 1999, saya yakin bidang ini dapat bersaing walaupun ketika ekonomi gawat kerana selain dapat menjadi pembekal kepada kontraktor kita juga merupakan pembekal untuk keperluan individu,” ujarnya.

Sementara itu, Agil Faisal berharap pihak Mara dapat mempercepatkan proses permohonan dan kelulusan pinjaman kepada usahawan yang layak untuk menyertai program francais ini.

Beliau juga meminta Kementerian Pembangunan Usahawan dan Koperasi agar memberi keistimewaan kepada peniaga Melayu yang terlibat dalam program itu untuk menjadi pembekal bahan-bahan binaan projek-projek kerajaan.


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