JAMES QUAN

Founder, Bynd Ar­ti­san

Prestige (Singapore) - - FEATURE -

Fa­ther of two chil­dren — his daugh­ter is in univer­sity, while his son will be con­scripted next year — James Quan was a record­break­ing run­ner for his school as a teenager. While in col­lege in the US, Quan started bowl­ing for fun and it “rolled” into a rather com­pet­i­tive pur­suit. “We played al­most ev­ery night and the in­ten­sity was very strong as we pit­ted against one an­other. (Yes, money was in­volved!) A few went on to bowl in the Pro­fes­sional Bowlers As­so­ci­a­tion. We be­came that good,” he rem­i­nisces. What do you en­joy about bowl­ing?

It’s a solo game yet can be a team sport. It is al­ways about im­prov­ing your scores and be­ing good at it con­sis­tently. As a team event, one learns how to rise to the oc­ca­sion when a team­mate fal­ters and also un­der­stand that individual fail­ures can be nul­li­fied by team­mates who sup­port you whole­heart­edly. There is al­ways an­other game to play, an­other chance to make good. any spe­cial rit­ual or gear?

A lot of stretch­ing. I once bowled 10 hours from 12am to 10am. Yes, the things you could do when you were younger! I had the bad­dest “Robo­cop” glove. I felt more pow­er­ful with it. how ob­sessed are you With bowl­ing?

Ob­sessed enough to have bowled ev­ery night for eight months with­out in­ter­mis­sion — un­til I tore my shoul­der lig­a­ment. We were very com­pet­i­tive. It be­came a nightly mini United Na­tions rit­ual. The Kore­ans had 20 cheer­lead­ers ev­ery time. Teams from other cities in Cal­i­for­nia drove over to com­pete and it be­came very se­ri­ous when the prize money of US$1,000 was in­tro­duced. do you play any other sports?

I played bad­minton with my chil­dren when they rep­re­sented their pri­mary school. any vices?

Noth­ing ex­treme. I’d rather spend more time catch­ing up on sleep. great­est fan­tasy?

Driv­ing a re­ally fast con­vert­ible that has two doors and seats five adults com­fort­ably. suc­cess to you is…

Sleep­ing at 11pm and wak­ing up fresh at 7am, then en­joy ev­ery­thing I do after that. It’s that sim­ple. great­est chal­lenge ever faced?

Get­ting my wife to say “yes” after three weeks of know­ing her. proud­est achieve­ment?

Start­ing Bynd Ar­ti­san al­most four years ago. We re­ceived ac­co­lades like the Pres­i­dent’s De­sign Award, De­sign of The Year and Sin­ga­pore Tourism Awards Best Shop­ping Ex­pe­ri­ence within three years of in­cep­tion — we re­main the youngest com­pany to have got­ten them. What mo­ti­vates you?

From the busi­ness per­spec­tive, happy clients. Whether it is an $35 re­tail sale or a mil­lion-dol­lar cor­po­rate be­spoke or­der, I’m ex­tremely ex­cited when I see peo­ple en­joy­ing what we have done. I met Pres­i­dent Hal­imah Ya­cob at the Com­mu­nity Chest Char­ity TV Show re­cently and she told me how for­eign dig­ni­taries loved the state gifts we de­signed and crafted for the Is­tana. My clients drive me to go the dis­tance. What We didn’t know about you?

I’m an in­tro­vert. My Man­darin is bet­ter than my English and my Can­tonese is bet­ter than my Man­darin. I can’t dance to save my­self. What’s on your bucket list?

List Bynd Ar­ti­san on the Stock Ex­change be­fore I turn 60. Stay in a tra­di­tional ryokan with my wife be­fore I turn 70 — we talk about it ev­ery time but shop­ping al­ways got in the way. Learn to play a mu­si­cal in­stru­ment be­fore I turn 80. favourite app?

Does What­sapp count? De­liv­eroo? We use it at least once a day. It’s more like a life-saver app. cause you feel strongly about?

Se­nior work­ers and the im­por­tant roles they play in busi­ness. your idea of a per­fect date?

Chill­ing in front of the ocean with a glass of whisky in hand. It’s happening soon be­cause we are head­ing to Ibiza!

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