Changes to Singapore Prestige Brand Award will allow more brands to qualify

An annual award that recognises outstanding local brands has been tweaked in the hopes of attracting more potential winners.

The Singapore Prestige Brand Award (SPBA), jointly organised by the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (ASME) and Chinese daily Lianhe Zaobao, said on Thursday that the criteria for two of the award's categories have been changed, allowing more brands to qualify.

A brand can now be considered for the "heritage" category if it has been around for 25 years, from 30 years previously, while a brand that has been in three foreign markets for at least three years - down from five previously - can qualify for the "regional" category.

In a press release, the organising committee said that the move would recognise "brands which have stayed relevant for a long time and those which have taken the challenge and ventured overseas successfully".

It added: "This is in line with the government's push for small and medium enterprises to expand overseas taking advantage of growth opportunities".

Ms Chew Lee Ching, SPBA organising committee chair and Asme vice-president said that "SPBA is constantly evolving to better cater to the changing business trends".

"The fine-tuning of the award criteria is yet another step in SPBA's efforts to stay current and relevant in our dynamic business landscape," she said.

The award's other categories recognise "promising" brands set up for between 3 and 8 years, and "established" brands that have been in the market for 6 to 30 years.

An additional category recognises "special merit" brands, which include not-for-profit entities and government agencies.

Each category apart from "special merit" will have an overall winner as well as a "most popular brand" winner selected through public voting.

Ms Chew said at the launch of the award on Thursday that "we are confident that many exceptional companies with impressive branding practices will come forward to benchmark their branding initiatives against others in the industry".

More than 300 people attended the award's launch, which was held in the Singapore Press Holdings auditorium.

Winners of the award will be announced at a press conference in September, and the award ceremony will be held in October. Interested brands can visit the SPBA website, and should submit their applications by noon on May 30.