BreadTalk, Adera to create digital tools for SMEs

Adera AI chairman Lennon Tan (left) and BreadTalk founder and chairman George Quek at Wednesday's signing event for a joint venture that will develop fintech and digital solutions for small and medium-sized firms.
Adera AI chairman Lennon Tan (left) and BreadTalk founder and chairman George Quek at Wednesday's signing event for a joint venture that will develop fintech and digital solutions for small and medium-sized firms.PHOTO: ADERA AI

Recently delisted food and beverage player BreadTalk Group is forming a joint venture with Singapore-based technology services group Adera AI.

The joint venture will develop innovative fintech and digital solutions targeted at small and medium-sized enterprises, said BreadTalk and Adera in a statement on Wednesday evening.

It will create digital tools that provide data analytics, improve operational efficiency as well as offer data-driven decision methodology on inventory, payments, customer acquisition and more.

There will also be a scalable omnichannel platform to enhance outreach to customers via new sales channels, integrated operations, digital payments and facial recognition.

In addition, the joint venture will set up a blockchain-based, supply-chain financing platform with digitalised processes and document automation.

This will give stakeholders faster access to financing and potentially lower their costs of funding, according to the statement.

The first batch of these fintech and digital solutions is targeted to be rolled out by the first quarter of next year.

For a start, they will be deployed progressively across BreadTalk's food and beverage (F&B) establishments as proof of concept, before being adapted for mainstream adoption in other industries.

Adera chairman Lennon Tan said: "Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, technology has become an essential tool to overcome operational challenges and enhance business agility.

"With BreadTalk's established F&B business presence across 17 territories, it will provide significant opportunities for us to introduce and deploy our fintech and digital solutions."

BreadTalk group chief operating officer William Cheng noted the "vast, untapped opportunities" in digitalisation within the group and the food and beverage industry.

He said that the technology innovations can be replicated to enable businesses in other industries to build sustainable growth in their digitalisation road maps.

Under the tie-up, Adera will provide its know-how, capabilities and experience in key areas such as digital automation, facial recognition, digital identity, digital payments and artificial intelligence.

BreadTalk will contribute its technical and operational expertise.

The food and beverage group delisted from the Singapore Exchange this June.

Its founder and chairman George Quek, his wife Katherine Lee and Thailand-listed hospitality and leisure firm Minor International had launched a privatisation bid in February.

THE BUSINESS TIMES

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 25, 2020, with the headline 'BreadTalk, Adera to create digital tools for SMEs'. Print Edition | Subscribe