Written by Rita Nance
Special to Exhibit City News
Established in 1976, Singapore-based Kingsmen Creatives LTD has a vision of becoming one of the elite communication design houses on a global level. The company is currently located in 17 cities in the Asian Pacific and the Middle East.
The success of Kingsmen is largely due to the vision of its two founders, Benedict Soh and Simon Ong. Their passion for excellence in design and customer service has been the key to much of their success. After more than 30 years in business, both Soh and Ong still sit next to each other in the same office. Their keen vision and humble leadership style creates an environment that inspires all the king’s men to work together as a well-oiled machine.
“Like many companies, we started with a focus on exhibit design and production,” said Soh. “We are located on an island and if we depended solely on exhibition design we would starve. We quickly chose to diversify our overlapping skills to
maximize our effectiveness as a design and manufacturing company. Today, we are positioned as turnkey providers for both exhibitions and interiors.”
“Through a vertical and horizontal integration of our broad range of service skills, we offer value-added services to our clients,” said Ong. “We also have the service-minded attitude of never say never, which is demonstrated by all of our employees. This service culture is what makes Kingsmen a leading company in Asia.”
Kingsmen services are divided into four categories
• Exhibitions and events
• Museums and thematic
• Retail and corporate interiors
• Integrated marketing communications
The exhibits, museums, and retail interiors utilize the same design and craftsmen skills that Kingsmen offers in its production facilities.
“Our recent success producing show props for the Universal Studios theme park in Singapore was completed in 15 months,” said Soh. “The project spanned two million square feet, using 1000 tons of steel and 200 tons of fiber-reinforced plastic. The skills needed here went far beyond our basic shop carpentry and required sculpture artists and fiberglass fabrication to complete the project. It was achieved with the full satisfaction of the client”
In addition to exhibits, retail interiors and theme parks, Kingsmen created a service called Integrated Marketing Communications. Melissa Ho is the director of this division for Kingsmen.
“This service goes beyond exhibits to offer our clients branding and marketing solutions such as product launches, press events, sponsorship events, and shopping mall promotions,” said Ho. “Kingsmen recently invested in a large, curved LED screen that was permanently mounted to the outside of a prominent building at the heart of the Singapore shopping district. We then sell video time on this screen, which operates 24 hours a day. This is a completely new revenue source and the Kingsmen core disciplines are at the heart of this marketing capability.”
At a time when some companies struggle to stay afloat and remain competitive, Kingsmen continues to reinvent itself. Soh believes this is the key to the company’s success.
“We succeed by re-thinking our business strategies, redefining our competencies and believing we are masters of our fate,” said Soh. “Diversifying our capabilities beyond tradeshows was the key.”
Humpty Dumpty sits on a wall outside the Kingsmen office. The rhyme states that he falls and is unable to be put back together again. The very opposite is true at Kingsmen where Humpty sits proud and very much intact.