From roast to riches: Singapore street food

By: Southeast Asia Globe - Posted on: June 4, 2012 | Singapore

Investors hungry for Singapore’s Kay Lee Roast Meat Joint will have to dig deep to raise the S$3.5m ($2.7m) asking price for one of the city-state’s most popular Cantonese-style restaurants

It is a meaty proposition for a 60-plastic-stool eatery, although Kay Lee brings in an estimated S$2,000 ($1,600) a day, as the country’s appetite for the restaurant’s duck, pork ribs and crispy pig skin has grown.



Relocating to its current location on Upper Paya Lebar Road in the 1980s, its price tag reportedly includes S$1.5m ($1.2m) for the property and S$2m ($1.6m) for the shop name, recipes and a two- to three-month training period to perfect the signature dishes.

Since the business was put on the market in January, more than 60 parties have expressed an interest, offering up to S$3m ($2.4m); though Betty Kong, 66, and her husband Ha Wai Kay, 62, are not settling for anything less than their original price. The husband and wife team haven’t placed a time frame on the sales process, but expect to sell the 40-year-old family business within the year. The hordes of customers who line the street every lunchtime will be pleased to hear that the eatery will be sold on condition the famous, top-secret recipes remain the same.