Meet Edward Lee, group business director of PSGourmet Group and member of the Robb Report Singapore Thought Leaders community
It is one thing to be a pioneer, but quite another to stay relevant and ahead of the game. When P.S. Cafe started in 1999, little did its founders Peter Teo, Philip Chin, and Richard Chamberlain expect that it would evolve into one of Singapore’s most beloved F&B institutions. The PSGourmet Group now counts 11 PS Cafe outlets, Chopsuey Café and Jypsy (an Anglo-Chinese and contemporary Japanese restaurant, respectively) in its portfolio. More pertinently, in a little over two decades, PSGourmet has written—and constantly refined—the blueprint for chic café culture in Singapore.
In his 14 years with PSGourmet, Edward Lee has been in the thick of things. From being instrumental in expanding the business, to weathering a global pandemic that decimated many F&B businesses, Lee reflects that his journey thus far has been “liberating and humbling”. As borders reopen and the dining scene looks primed to rev up several notches, PSGourmet is looking to deepen its connection with its home market, as well as expand its footprint overseas, starting with Shanghai—with Lee at the controls.
Who influenced you most in life?
My parents were instrumental in instilling core values that have served as a moral compass throughout my life. Also, the influence of visionaries like the founders of PS.Gourmet cannot be overstated. Their generous sharing of knowledge and experiences has been a profound source of inspiration and learning.
Why keeps you going at work?
I am fortunate to be in a company and a position that allows me to be creative. The ability to create is both liberating and humbling. We meticulously explore each space’s potential—the surroundings, architecture, ambience, and overall feeling—to create a connection between the location and our offering.
How do you feel about taking risks?
Embracing risk is an inherent aspect of growth. Every day, we venture into uncharted territory, whether creating new outlets, experimenting with new dishes, or organising events. While this exposure might make us vulnerable, it also affords us the invaluable gift of feedback, enabling us to evolve and improve.
Where is the F&B industry headed?
There is a notable increase in technology integration, gradually reducing the need for direct human interaction. From at-table ordering and payment systems to the implementation of robotics, these advancements transform how businesses operate and cater to their customers.
Photography by Eugene Lee, Enfinite Studio
Hair & Makeup by Sophia and Victoria, Suburbs Studio