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Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in Social News

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Brunei Film Blitz

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in performing arts, movies, lifestyle, Social News

 


Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Anak Hajah Nurul Amal Munjiatul Athirah, Junior Producer at Origin Film, Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali, the Deputy Permanent Secretary (Tourism) at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT)and the Secretary of the Brunei Tourism Board, Siti Kamaluddin, co-founder of Origin Films and Din Kamaluddin, co-founder and producer of Origin Films during the press conference of Brunei Film Blitz at Progresif Headquarter
 

Wanna win cash prize for showcasing your talent? There are two categories – The Open Category for BND 5,000 and the 48 Hour Film Blitz for BND 10,000. The respective winners will also walked away with a camera.

This was announced by Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali, the Deputy Permanent Secretary (Tourism) at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT)and the Secretary of the Brunei Tourism Board and Siti Kamaluddin, the founder of Origin Artistic Management at Progresif Headquarters last weekend.

The event known as Brunei Film Blitz will be finale for the Brunei December Festival 2017 and it will be held on 29th to 31st December 2017. The three day event includes a screening of shortlisted films, master classes with industry professionals, a 48-hour Film Blitz and an awards night.

So let’s go in-depth with the categories: the open category is where film makers can submit their films of any genre (fiction, documentary or animation). It must be shot in Brunei Darussalam and the entry can be of length below 12 minutes duration inclusive of titles and credits. You can send in your older clips but short films made before 2016 will not be accepted. You can send in as many short films as possible. Of course, the more the merrier. The first prize will be BND 5,000 prize and a camera.

As for the 48-hour Film Blitz, it’s new of its kind film competition. The challenge comes when the participants were only given 48 hours to create a short movie. The other catch is that the participants will be given a “secret ingredient” that has to be included in their films. The grand winner of this category will win BND 10,000 and a camera.

The interesting thing is that both categories are open to all walks of life – meaning it’s open to Bruneians, Permanent Residents and everyone, and I mean, everyone, be it tourist. The condition is simple. Just make sure the videos/films are shot in Brunei Darussalam to be eligible. This also means all film makers in Brunei can partake in this contest. Don’t be shy 😀

On Friday 29th September, Origin will host a workshop with industry professionals. For your info, the juries for the competition will be international film makers and sponsors.

Wardi was very excited that this event will help to spur the creativity among the locals and at the same time, showcasing what Brunei Darussalam has to offer. He also hopes tourists will join in the contest. Siti Kamaluddin wants the entries to be creative and open, unearthing their talents in film making in Brunei context. So you can even talk about things like ambuyat, durian, kampung ayer, simply anything.

Registration is already open and you can download the form here and then submit to Origin Artistic Management, Unit 7 BT Complex, Jalan Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa BE2513, Brunei Darussalam.

You can also follow @bruneifilmblitz on instagram for updates.

 

 

 

 

 

Sneaks: Shrek the Musical

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in performing arts, lifestyle, Social News

 


Team Mardi and Amy working around the clock during the rehearsal of Shrek the Musical at JIS Arts Centre Theatre
 

Relentless Entertainment Brunei will be holding their fifth (5th ) musical production, ‘Shrek’ The Musical this weekend.

The musical will take place for two (2) days – Saturday, 16th September (7.30pm Premier Show) and Sunday, 17th September (1.30pm Matinee show and 7.30pm evening show) at the Jerudong International School (JIS) Arts Centre Theatre.

Tickets are priced at $25 & $35 (Based on seating zones) and are available for purchase at Relentless Studios (B21, 2nd Floor, Gadong Central), R&C Café (UBD Library), The Coffeebean & Tea Leaf Times Square, Supa Save Mata Mata & Supa Save Seria outlets as well as YippyTune Music School (B19, 2nd Floor Gadong Central).

Tickets will also be available at the door during the performance but do contact please contact 8243222 / 7186225 if they still have seats.

Rano’s thoughts: I’ve seen quite a few musicals produced by Relentless Entertainment and my favourite has been Belle. The production value also have improved over the years and the JIS Arts Centre Theatre is always a great venue for a musical play.

I paid a visit during their rehearsal recently and the team has been really hard as always to make this a success. The team have been practising for at least three months and during the rehearsal, they looked solid.

The costumes looked awesome and even the props!! Do watch out for the giant dragon on stage.

 

 

 

 


Princess Fiona and Shrek
 

 


Team Lord Farquaad
 


Lord Farquaad and the gingerbread man
 


At the dragon’s liar
 


The fairy tale creature
 

Articulation, Free preview Presentation Skills for youth

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in Youth, community, Social News

 

 

FREE PREVIEW:
[Presentation Skills for Youth – September Intake]
[Limited to 20 Seats]
Academic excellence is futile if we are unable to articulate our ideas and opinions to the world.
To parents who wish to empower their children (14-20yrs old) with the ability to achieve success by communicating effectively, find out how by attending this free preview.
Book a seat by texting +673 8777818 or log on to www.articulation.co to find out more.

How can the youth benefit from this workshop? Straight As and degrees that used to guarantee scholarships and a job offer are now a minimum requirement. With increasing competition, year by year, how do you ensure that you shine the brightest among all the other stars?

To stand out among your peers, you must complement your academic excellence with your ability to communicate.

Get ahead by learning how to clearly think logically, present cohesively, construct arguments intelligently and express your unique opinions in educational settings and beyond. Excel in your class presentations, oratory contests or scholarship and entrance interviews. It’s never too early to start learning effective communication.

At Articulation, we believe youth have the unlimited potential to achieve boundless successes in the future. Let us equip you today with the knowledge and confidence to communicate your ideas to the world, tomorrow.

 


Stuart Lee with the young executives recently in September
 

About Stuart Lee.

Stuart Lee is a trainer and award-winning speaker. For the past 15 years, he has trained over hundreds of speakers to communicate effectively and also mentored many international speech champions. He has the ability to identify, nurture and fulfil the potential of individuals through a unique blend of unconventional methods and real life experience.

In 2013, Stuart became the lead trainer of Rhymin & Partners conducting over hundreds of training. He has trained more than a thousand participants from government ministries, multi-national companies, local corporations, companies and SMEs in Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia.

Before he was a trainer, Stuart started his career at 23 as a lecturer teaching public speaking for IELTS students. Since then, he has also been in various corporate communication positions for 10 years across the media, advertisement, ICT and construction industries in Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia.

Throughout his career, Stuart has been involved in numerous speaking engagements as a speaker, emcee, judge, coach, and moderator.

In 2014, Stuart was privileged to be the first ever TEDxspeaker in Brunei at the TEDxGadong. Moving in full circle, he recently became the trainer of the latest batch of TEDxGadong speakers. Among others, he also trained the Brunei Info-Communication Technology Awards (BICTA) participants, UBD debate team, RTB DJs and the TAIB Entrepreneurs Program.

Occasionally, he has also moderated regional and international events such as the ASEAN Summit, AMBD workshop, National Environment Conference and for local NGO’s such as SCOT’s, Beach Bunch and ASEAN Youth Conference. He has also judged speaking contests such as the UBD/BSP Green Debate, IET’s Present Around the World competition, iCentre’s IGNITE Entrepreneurship Challenge and TAIB Entrepreneurs Program Finals among others.

Inspire to Launch Masterclass Series

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in community, lifestyle, Business, Social News

 


Shaun Hoon, the founder of Inspire magazine, will be sharing a compilation of the most powerful stories and lessons learned from the publications
 

Inspire will be launching the first of the 8 Masterclass Series starting Monday, 18th September, for the next 4 weeks. The organizer will be kicking off with the title on “The Art of Selling” by sharing about why the top sales professionals succeed, and interesting observations such as the similarities and differences between selling a pair of $100 shoes and a $1 million oversea property from personal experience.

The Masterclass Series will be conducted by Shaun Hoon, the founder of Inspire magazine, who will be sharing a compilation of the most powerful stories and lessons learned from the publications. According to Shaun, this is an initiative to help counter the wary mindset faced by business owners today, who are going through the current economic challenges. Shaun noted: “We can either sit there and whine about the situation, or come together to remove the scarcity mindset through education and collective thinking.”

What makes these Masterclasses unique is that unlike academic studies, they do not engage in discussing theories or hypotheticals. “Each Masterclass is guided by powerful stories of success and failures, for students to gain from the strategies that worked and learn through the lessons from prior mistakes, to level up their game.” According to Shaun.

“It is my objective to conduct these Masterclasses in a small, intimate setting to create the perfect conditions to help attendees to broaden and foster a growth mindset through two ways interactions, whilst being supported by likeminded people that will encourage and make each other accountable for succeeding.” He further added.

These Masterclasses are for the people whom the organizer describes as “the students of life”, those who want to find purpose and give meaning to their work, change the world for the better and those who are serious about lifting their games.

What attendees are expected to Learn from these Masterclasses include:

• How to be a masterful communicator.
• How successful people think and function.
• How to create business opportunities out of nothing.
• The life skills required to overcome any adversity.
• How to discover your value, and life purpose and how you can make a difference.

According to Shaun, what makes these Masterclasses valuable are not just the lessons from his own experiences, but some of the sharing of the most powerful stories and strategies used by the most successful people whom he interviewed in Brunei and around the world for Inspire magazine. Some of them includes: Robert Kiyosaki, Fan Bingbing, Marshall Goldsmith, Shila Amzah, Dato Timothy Ong and Wu Chun.

The organiser will be giving out 5 complimentary slots for each session to students and individuals who are financially strapped. You can download the full details about the Masterclasses at www.YesInspire.com/training. There are limited seats on each section and you can contact 717 4286 or email shaun@catalyst.com.bn for bookings or details.

 

 

 

 

Brunei Travel Fair 2017 prize presentation

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in travel, lifestyle, Social News

 

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Irene Soon, General Manager of Sabre Travel Network (Brunei) thanking all the supporters and partners of the recent travel fair before the prize presentation for the winners held at Emperor’s Court
 

Sabre Travel Network (Brunei) Sdn Bhd hosted the Brunei Travel Fair 2017 last month at the Banquet Hall, International Convention Centre and yesterday was the prizes presentation to honour the winners of the lucky draw campaign that took place during that weekend.

So how did it fare? Pretty good in fact. It attracted more than 13,500 visitors to the travel fair and the bookings received increased by 24% from last year’s. That’s pretty encouraging number considering the economic climate of Brunei Darussalam.

Irene Soon, General Manager of Sabre Travel Network (Brunei), appreciated all the partners and supporters involved in making the travel fair another success.

The prize presentation ceremony took place at Emperor’s Court and it was attended by Sabre Travel Network (Brunei), Baiduri Bank, Royal Brunei Airlines and travel agencies. The prizes were sponsored by Sabre Travel Network (Brunei), Baiduri Bank, Royal Brunei Airlines and Malaysia Airlines.

 

 

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Ms Lim Shar Lun won a 2 Returned Economy Class Tickets to any Royal Brunei Airlines long haul destination
 

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12 year old Md Shahirul Azuan Md Effendi won a two return economy class ticket to any Royal Brunei Airlines short haul destination for winning in Category A for the Fidget Spinner competition
 

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Wan Farhan Hj Ibrahim won a return economy class air ticket to any Royal Brunei Airlines short haul destination. He won in Category B for the Fidget Spinner competition.
 

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Ms Malinee Bumrungkit won a Mayer Healthy Fryer sponsored by Sabre Travel Network
 

The winners.

Malaysia Airlines sponsored returned tickets and the winners were Dk Majeedah Pg Hj Jeludin, a return flight ticket to Penang via Kuala Lumpur and Muna Atiqah Abdul Nadir, a return flight ticket to Langkawi via Kuala Lumpur.

Royal Brunei Airlines sponsored air tickets and Royal Skies Points and the winners were Lim Shar Lun, winning two return flight tickets to any Royal Brunei Airlines long haul destination, Mohd Saiffuddin Mohd Yusop, winning two return flight tickets to any Royal Brunei Airlines short haul destination annd Hj Shahri Hj Zainal, winning 50,000 Royal Skies points.

As for the Sabre Travel Network winners, they were Mahani Md Yussof (GoPro Hero 5), Norhayati Malai Abdullah (Matrix HD TV), Ms Chong Nyan Mee (Philips TV) and Malinee Bumrungkit (Mayer Healthy Fryer).

For the Fidget Spinner Competition organised by Royal Brunei Airlines, the winners were Md Shahirul Azuan Md Effendi for Category A and Wan Farhan Hj Ibrahim for Category B. Both of them won a return flight ticket to any Royal Brunei Airlines short haul destination.

For the Travel Agent category, all the destinations – Ho Chi Minh, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and London belonged to two travel consultants from Pan Bright Travel for their top selling destinations during the travel fair.

For the top Travel Agents award, Freme Travel Services came first while Pan Bright Travel Service came second and Darussalam Holdings finished third.

 

 

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Mahani Md Yussof won herself a GoPro Hero 5 sponsored by Sabre Travel Network
 

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Chong Nyan Mee won herself a Philips TV sponsored by Sabre Travel Network
 

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The winners sponsored by Malaysia Airlines. One is heading to Penang while the other to Langkawai
 

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Freme Travel Services won as the top selling travel agent during the Sabre Travel Fair
 

 

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An agent from Pan Bright Travel Service rewarded for her efforts for her top selling destinations – Singapore and London during the travel fair
 

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Representatives from Pan Bright Travel Services, coming 2nd place in the Top Travel Agents during the Brunei Travel Fair
 

New facelift for CBTL

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in community, charity, food, Social News

 


Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Anak Abdul Mun’im bin Pengiran Anak Haji Tahiruddin, the Managing Director of The Coffee Bean® Brunei with His Excellency Craig Allen, the U.S. Ambassador to Brunei Darussalam at the relaunch of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Centrepoint
 


With invited guests to witness the 16th anniversary of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
 

The Coffee Bean® celebrates their 16th Anniversary of brewing in Brunei with the renovation of their first outlet that opened in 2001 located at the Centrepoint Hotel. The new concept embraces the Southern California roots of where the American coffee franchise was born.

The new Californian look and layout engages customers with their surroundings by offering easier interactions with baristas and community message walls for patrons to localize. Frederick Milin, Brand Manager of PAR Food & Beverages Sdn. Bhd. shares, “It’s important for us to evolve and change with our customer’s needs. Based on the feedback of our regular customers, the present look is a fresher and lighter theme paying tribute to the Californian lifestyle element while the layout has increased customer seating and provides a better area for large groups that frequent our Centrepoint outlet.”

The official reopening was officiated by guest of honour Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Anak Abdul Mun’im bin Pengiran Anak Haji Tahiruddin, the Managing Director of The Coffee Bean® Brunei with a ribbon cutting ceremony. Also present was His Excellency Craig Allen, the U.S. Ambassador to Brunei Darussalam. The ceremony began with the recitation of Doa selamat followed by welcoming remarks and was followed by a cheque presentation to three charitable organizations by public donations and contributions from The Coffee Bean®. The three organizations were namely Centre for Children with Special Needs, SMARTER Brunei and Pusat Ehsan Al-Ameerah Al-Hajjah Maryam with a total amount of $6,000.

The event also marked the launching of new merchandise namely the 16th Anniversary T-Shirt and the Ice Blended 16th Anniversary T-Shirt retailed at $23.00 each including the addition of two new permanent Ice Blended drinks – Berry’d Treasure, a blend of berry juice and vanilla and the ever popular Cookies & Cream which now comes in Mocha or Vanilla flavoured.

To find out more news or promotions follow The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf® on Instagram at @coffeebean_brunei and like them on facebook at facebook.com/thecoffeebeanbrunei.

 

 


Guest of honour with his welcoming remarks
 


Handing over of donations to three charitable foundations in Brunei Darussalam
 


The new facelift inside Gadong outlet
 


Now they have an upper area. Cool 😀
 

Media Day at Brunei International Airport

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in travel, Social News

 


Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Mustappa, the Minister of Communications looking at a souvenir product at one of the souvenir shop at Brunei International Airport
 


The minister speaking to Vincent Hong of See Hua Daily News
 

It’s good to see how much Brunei International Airport has grown after the renovation back in 2012. The foundation stone laying ceremony for the Modernisation Project of the Brunei International Airport  took place back in October 2012 and it was graced by the former Minister of Communications, Pehin Orang Kaya Hamzah Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdullah. It was a project spearheaded by Brunei Economic Development Board and Department of Civil Aviation.

Fast forward now, the Brunei International Airport has total changed from what it was before – better access for passengers, better and efficient check-in counters, more spacious at departure hall area and many more.

It was a great to see Brunei International Airport hosted a media day with the presence of Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Mustappa, the Minister of Communications and he shared his insights of the newly renovated Brunei International Airport to the media.

Also present was Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Communications, Dr. Hj Supry bin Hj Awang Ladi, Mohammad Nazri Mohammad Yusof, Director for Department of Civil Aviation and other officials of DCA and stakeholders of Brunei International Airport.

The minister was quite happy with the progress made at BIA and it is ready to soar to newer heights. BIA is ready to handle at least 3 million travellers and currently BIA is handling an estimated number of 1.5 million. He believed that there is still more room for growth in terms of travellers.

The minister gave an extensive tour with the media, covering different aspects such as goods and services offered at BIA.

What I found interesting is the “Commercially Important Person (CIP) Area” – a newly introduced service offering a VIP holding area which is also available for public rental before aircraft boarding, ensuring optimum comfort and privacy for passengers who need it.

Another that caught my eye was Savy’s Hall which is located on the upper floor which is a few metres after you pass the immigration. They probably need a bigger sign so passengers are aware of their presence. I didn’t know there was one until I attended the media tour. It’s basically another eatery place apart from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf.

Mixmediaworx has also helped to provide revenue for BIA as the advertising agency and they will be involved in a five year plan which began last year. Azlan Ahmad, the Executive Director of Mixmediaworx shared the updates with the minister of their progress and involvement so far with BIA.

The minister is very aware of the progress of BIA as he shared updates such as transportation (taxi system and even bus system in the future) and their newly launched mobile app, iFlyBrunei Version 2.0

I’ve been traveling a lot lately and I have seen great changes at BIA ever since its renovation. Good job on BEBD on the renovations and DCA on maintaining the standards and improving whenever necessary.

 

 


The minister at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
 


The minister touring inside the departure hall of Brunei International Airpot
 


Something to look forward to very soon
 

 


The minister visiting a new eatery place called Savy’s Hall
 

 


I might just dine here one day during one of the future travels
 


The minister launching Junjung
 


The minister and the entourage at Junjung kiosk
 


I shall try this one day. Now available at Junjung. A good way to buy souvenirs for outgoing tourists.
 

Shrek the Musical, press conference

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in music, lifestyle, Social News

 


Good luck to Relentless Entertainment crew for next weekend’s event
 

Relentless Entertainment Brunei will be holding their fifth (5th ) musical production, ‘Shrek’ The Musical.

The musical will take place for two (2) days – Saturday, 16th September (7.30pm Premier Show) and Sunday, 17th September (1.30pm Matinee show and 7.30pm evening show) at the Jerudong International School (JIS) Arts Centre Theatre.

The exciting two and a half hour show is set in a mythical ‘once upon a time’ sort of land featuring Shrek, a hulking green ogre who, after being mocked and feared his entire life retreats to a swamp to exist in happy isolation. Suddenly, a gang of homeless fairy-tale creatures (Pinocchio, The Three Bears, Ugly Duckling, Big Bad Wolf, etc.) raid his sanctuary, saying they’ve been evicted by vertically challenged Lord Farquaad. Shrek goes on a journey to get his swamp back and is given a deal to rescue Princess Fiona for his swamp back.

The musical is supported by the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism, Brunei Tourism Board, Progresif Cellular Sdn. Bhd. , YippyTune Music School as official Vocal Coach, The Faceshop as the official make up sponsor, Dragons and Pixie Dust and Karen Then Make Up as Official Special Effects Make Up Artists, Offset Printing House as the official Print Partner and ticketing partners R&C Café and The Coffeebean & Tea Leaf.

Tickets are priced at $25 & $35 (Based on seating zones) and are available for purchase at Relentless Studios (B21, 2nd Floor, Gadong Central), R&C Café (UBD Library), The Coffeebean & Tea Leaf Times Square, Supa Save Mata Mata & Supa Save Seria outlets as well as YippyTune Music School (B19, 2nd Floor Gadong Central).

With a total of 50 talented local cast members of different age groups performing, Shrek The Musical promises to be a fun, entertaining and colourful family event.

For the past 10 years Relentless Entertainment, a local performing arts, education and events management company has worked closely with local talents and artists and hopes to develop as well as establish a vibrant creative industry for the vast amounts of talents in Brunei.

This will be the first time they are organizing two (2) musicals in a year. Earlier this they produced Musical Mania, which they also announced, will be a yearly event.

Producing and organizing theatre musicals is the company’s way of providing the many aspiring local actors, singers and dancers a platform to perform and showcase their talents, to give all stage crew members the experience of working behind the scenes on a musical production and to show that Brunei / Bruneians are capable of producing musical shows of high standard with local talents.

Relentless believes that a musical production is a positive event and will have a positive impact on the community and all involved. The cast and crew are excited about the opportunity to contribute to the growing performing arts industry in Brunei Darussalam.

For more information on Shrek the Musical or upcoming Relentless Entertainment Events, please contact 8243222 / 7186225 and follow @Relentlessbrunei on Instagram

 

 

 


The co-founders of Relentless Entertainment – Sumardi Hedus and Amy Cheong – during the press conference last Tuesday
 


Some of the main cast for Shrek the Musical – the princess, the donkey and Shrek himself
 

 

Interview with Mark Raine

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in automative, lifestyle, Social News

Mark Raine, Mercedes-Benz Cars vice-president of sales and marketing (Malaysia), has been active in the car scene lately, leading record sales for Mercedes last year with almost 12,000 units sold in 2016. There are many interesting factors that contributed to the growth of Mercedes-Benz in Malaysia and also in South East Asia.

What has made the premium brand a success as of late? What are their recipes to success and sustainability? I have the privilege to interview Mark Raine during my short visit to Kota Kinabalu last week. Mark is a very easy going lad and very approachable. Thank you for hosting the media and customers last week and arranging a great three day event in showcasing how Mercedes-Benz is not just a product but a lifestyle.

 

 


Interviewing Mark Raine at Shangrila’s Rasa Ria
 

Rano Iskandar: Can you share the growth of Mercedes-Benz and its growing presence in South East Asia?

Mark Raine: I believe we have a holistic approach in our brand, Mercedes-Benz and this has been a huge factor in our growth and being a brand leader in the premium category. We don’t only have the best car but also focusing on customer centric in a way of doing our business, to give a more positive customer experience before and after sales. Even the process of buying a Mercedes is taken into account such as having a competent website, digital approach and also the consultation process. All these are essential in the buying process so in the end, the customers are happy with their choices. This is already half the victory in catering to what the customers want.

The real deal starts after the sales and we at Mercedes emphasizes deeply in this area as this will determine our loyalty of our customers. It has proven a success and it is no doubt that the growth of Mercedes in the premium sector has increased despite the downturn in the economy in SEA.

The extension of the models from Mercedes-Benz has helped to elevate the growth of the brand in the premium sector. These are such as the SUV models – the GLEs, GLCs and GLAs being introduced in the market.

Rano Iskandar: Speaking of the trend, is this segment a huge trend in the region for Mercedes and how it came about?

Mark Raine: Yes, this is more of a global trend that SUVs have impacting the trend. However, there was little choices in the premium segment. We have a gut feeling and took a gamble in this segment and we believed that SUV is the thing of the future. This was also the key element of positioning of the Mercedes brand (in the SUV segment), focusing on lifestyle and affluent customers. This has helped to rejuvenate the brand while improving on innovation and technology.

Rano Iskandar: Why Kota Kinabalu as the prime destination for the #hungryforadventure ?

Mark Raine: The destination speaks for itself and we want to associate the mindset of our customers that our brand offers endurance, great positioning for different walks of life such as taking your children to school or on the weekend, bring your bike for a spin or going for a round of golf and lastly Kota Kinabalu gives a sense of adrenalin which resonates with our brand. We were fortunate that we have different weather conditions during our hill drive this morning at Sabah National Park and it showed what our SUVs are capable of.

We at Mercedes tend to organize events like this twice a year. We will invite our stakeholders along such as the media, the customers to showcase what SUVs are about and also being a premium brand, we want to be approachable to our customers by having a touch and feel on what Mercedes have to offer.

Rano Iskandar: Which model in Malaysia has been a top seller?

Mark Raine: It will be the C class and it targets all walks of life. However, it’s not the only model that has been popular but the compact cars and other models such as the E Class that was launched last year in Malaysia. Pretty soon we will be launching the new E 350E the latest hybrid brand. In terms of growth, it will be the SUVs and the GLC is the best selling in Malaysia and we sold over 3,000 units since its launch.

 

 


Mark Raine, Mercedes-Benz Cars vice-president of sales and marketing (Malaysia), posing with the latest Mercedes-Benz GLC 200 at Hap Seng Star showroom at Kota Kinabalu recently
 

Rano Iskandar: Why introducing the GLC 200 if you already have the GLC 250?

Mark Raine: We have the GLC 250 which is a brilliant product. It’s an SUV 4WD and offers great speed and comfort, positioning it as a very sporty, luxury model.

However to a certain extent, we are only capturing a lot of market but there are customers who want different qualities and traits and their mindsets are different from other customers. Hence the GLC 200 repositions itself in more exclusive luxury segment. It comes standard in on-road package or off-road package. The interior package also makes the value perception of this vehicle very, very high. The GLC 200 is just a notch below the GLC 250, hence makes it more affordable for most customers in the market. The unique selling point of the GLC 200 will be the exclusive luxurious appeal with high value perception and many features at a very competitive price.

Rano Iskandar: The GLC 200 is locally assembled in Malaysia. Is there any difference from the ones being imported?

Mark Raine: No difference at all. Same car, same quality, same quality checks. In essence, the same car. In South East Asia, we have a local production because we have tax exemptions and it makes the pricing more attractive.

Rano Iskandar: The GLE 43 Coupe OrangeArt Limited Edition. Share me more about it.

Mark Raine: It’s already available through order. It’s very limited and exclusive order. It’s very eccentric and flashy feel. It has a 21 inch AMG wheels with the OrangeArt Edition exterior package. We even have the Night Package. The eccentric and unique edition features extravagant design highlights including striking expressive decals in the orange on the front apron and the AMG wheels painted in high-gloss black and rim flange painted in orange.

The GLE 43 Coupe Orange Art Edition making it a high end personalised edition giving that special, individualized character and it’s definitely a striking appeal.

 

 


I had the privilege to test drive the GLC 200 and it will available in Brunei market hopefully by November 2017
 


Loving the feel and the drive. Of course, I love the AMG GLC 250 but this model is still good enough to keep me satisfied
 


A nice touch when I opened the door of the GLC 200
 

Contact RA

ranoadidas (a) gmail.com
Instagram & Snapchat @ranoadidas
Contact: +6738677773

About RA

A blogger since 2002, using platforms from blogspot, joomla and now currently wordpress. A readership that stands on average of 20,000 visits per month. Also on active on social media platform on IG, Facebook and Snapchat (@ranoadidas)

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