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HBMSA: CEO with a sense of humour! Japfa's Tan Yong Nang

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HBMSA: CEO with a sense of humour! Japfa's Tan Yong Nang

The COVID-19 crisis has greatly affected businesses such as aviation and tourism, but food producers such as Japfa, which produces animal feed and food in Southeast Asia, still have to keep up with demand for staple foods.

CEO Tan Yong Nang sticks to his messaging of how the company’s diversification protects its earnings, and uses some clever analogies to get his point across, which is why we have nominated him for the Hong Bao Media Savvy Awards 2020.

We also loved his performance in the milk producer's Virtual Investor Day in August - his quip about baijiu had us in stitches.

Watch and read below for my assessment.


We launched the Hong Bao Media Savvy Awards in 2018 to recognise local business leaders for their communications skills, and to showcase authentic and credible home-grown communicators.

Supported by the Asia Pacific Association of Communications Directors, we highlight shining examples for other local business leaders to follow, and to build a culture of excellence in communication, to maximise the potential of Asian companies in the Asian Century.

Nominations close October 31, 2020 at


  • Messaging

Tan's messaging was on point as he kept to it for the whole interview. He stressed that Japfa uses local resources, produces locally, and sells its products in the various local markets they operate in, diversifying their revenue and making it resistant to shocks from the pandemic.

  • Analogies

Tan used two analogies in his CNBC interview to describe his business.

The first is a sailing one, comparing companies to sailing boats. In a tailwind situation, every company moves forward, but headwinds create a much more difficult situation, which is when stronger companies differentiate themselves.

The second analogy was referred to Japfa’s vertically-integrated model. Japfa’s poultry business breeds chicks, produces feeds, grows the chickens and produces end products such as chicken nuggets for the consumer.

Tan likens this model to a soccer team which is made up of players with different roles and strengths. By being vertically integrated, the company has a full team of players in different positions on the field, and they are geographically diversified, providing different revenue streams.

  • Humour

We so rarely come across CEOs of SGX-listed companies who are not only excellent at their jobs, but also seize the opportunity to show themselves at ease in front of the camera.

Watch the excerpt of his recent appearance at a virtual Investor Day briefing below.

If you know Tan Yong Nang, share this article with him and congratulate him on being nominated for the Hong Bao Media Savvy Awards 2020.

If you have what it takes, nominate yourself or your senior business leader for the Hong Bao Media Savvy Awards 2020!

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Mark Laudi

Mark Laudi

Press contact Managing Director (+65) 6223 2249

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