The Lim brothers had both studied abroad and held roles at leading companies before joining the family business in the 2000s. They had also been immersed in Lim Lam Thye’s operations from a young age. “As a teenager, I spent a lot of time helping out in the warehouse during school holidays as an ‘odd-job labourer’, opening wooden tea chests and blending tea with shovels for $5 an hour,” recalls the older Mr Lim.
Despite this wealth of background knowledge and considerable business acumen, the brothers knew there were risks involved in modernising the firm’s brand portfolio and launching the new subsidiaries. “It was a real departure point for the company,” says Mr Lim.
“However, Lim Lam Thye had always supplied beverage companies, so we knew there was strong potential for us to harness our historic expertise with tea and begin creating our own unique products.”
What also gave the Lim family the courage to take the firm in new directions was the strong conviction that a younger generation of increasingly sophisticated consumers was thirsty for innovative experiences when it came to tea.
“We have always done a lot of market research,” says Mr Lim. “My brother and I play a hands-on role, travelling extensively to restaurants, cafes and supermarkets to see how products are being consumed. We knew there was a younger audience out there that increasingly seeks authenticity when it comes to gourmet items. People also want to make sure that the luxury products they invest in really are of the highest quality.”