The 2017 Life Power List

From music to IPO

PHOTOS: GIN TAY FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES, ST FILE, UNUSUAL LIMITED

13 Mr Leslie Ong, 50, chief executive of Unusual Limited

If you have watched concerts in Singapore in the past few years, chances are that at least one was brought in by Unusual Limited.

Now you can buy its stock too: One of Singapore's largest concert promoters, Unusual was publicly listed in April this year.

With a presence in Malaysia and Hong Kong, the company has come a long way from its original business two decades ago, which was renting out equipment for events and shows.

Mr Ong makes it on the Life Power List this year for a strong line-up of major bands and artists and for leading the company to its successful public listing, which was described by Bloomberg as Singapore's top performing initial public offering.

Mr Ong, who started working part-time in the live events line during his national service days, was last on the Life Power List in 2007 (No. 7).

The company's concert-organising wing, Unusual Entertainment, brought in American band Foo Fighters, one of the world's biggest rock acts; Hong Kong Heavenly King Jacky Cheung and K-pop idol Taeyang. Other popular concerts include those by boyband veterans Backstreet Boys, and Mandopop and Cantopop acts such as G.E.M., Wakin Chau and Grasshopper.

Unusual's gig calendar next year, which includes three sold-out nights by Cheung in February, will feature more marquee acts, says Mr Ong, who is married and has a daughter, aged 18, and a son, 14.

He describes the SGX-ST Catalist Board listing as "the cherry on the cake" in "a very fruitful year".

Eddino Abdul Hadi

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on December 03, 2017, with the headline 'From music to IPO'. Print Edition | Subscribe