Naiise closing Jewel Changi outlet on Apr. 11, vendors reportedly owed up to S$10,000

Another one bites the dust.

Karen Lui | April 10, 2021, 12:08 PM

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Creative marketplace Naiise will shutter its remaining physical store on Apr. 11 but continue serving customers via its online platform.

Founder Dennis Tay cited the inability to recover from the pandemic as a reason for the closure, Today reported.

First opened in May 2019, the 9,500 square feet two-storey Naiise Iconic store at Jewel Changi showcased products by Singapore designers.

Image by Naiise on Facebook.

Owed vendors up to S$10,000

According to Today, some of Naiise's vendors are owed up to S$10,000 by the retailer.

A private Facebook group, Naiise Vendors, that started in July 2020, consists of 144 "current and former Naiise vendors" to gathered to discuss their issues.

Wendy Wang, 35, the former owner of Canvas Avenue which sold handmade wooden accessories and printed clothing, first posted about her issues with Naiise on Jun. 25, 2020.

Today reported that Naiise had owed her S$5,000. Although Naiise has repaid Wang in full, she had to close Canvas Avenue due to low sales during the pandemic.

Image by Reuben Au on Google Maps.

Other vendors who spoke to Today shared that the debts Naiise owed ranged from S$1,000 to S$10,000 and all attempts to contact Tay and his staff members were futile.

These vendors include Suzianna Mohd Sofiee of Fen Perfumes and Melissa Lam of Bamboo Straw Girl. The latter is apparently still waiting for Naiise to return the remaining stock.

Other vendors like Vincent Teo of Freshly Pressed Socks and Faizah Lokman of Bespoke Parfums Artisanaux have also expressed their exasperation in attempting to recover the money they are owed.

Debt collectors show up

On Apr. 9, 2021, licensed debt collector Singapore Debt Collection (SDCS) shared two live Facebook videos of their staff showing up at to the Jewel Changi store on behalf of a vendor.

According to the unseen narrator in the first video, Naiise took "fragrance, perfume from our client but he didn't pay" and "told us to come to B5 car park to talk because there's a lot of people at Jewel now".

Image by Naiise on Facebook.

They made their mission clear from the start: "By today, we want the money. That's it. Very simple."

In a post update on the same day with pictures of the car park meeting attached, SDCS stated, "Debtor will contact us with regards (sic) to the debt owed."

According to the latest summary video, a staff shared that they are still in the process of helping their client collect the debts:

"Our client did [go] down to their outlet to recover back some of their supplier goods since the debtor did not pay them the money."

Image by Reuben Au on Google Maps.

Closure of previous two stores

Last year, Naiise had six physical stores in Singapore and Malaysia.

Its outlet at the Paya Lebar Quarter only survived for seven months after its opening in December 2019, before it shut in July 2020.

Within the same month, Naiise withdrew from Design Orchard's retail showcase for homegrown designers as its operator, two years ahead of its original term, citing the pandemic's impact as the cause.

Design Orchard. Image by Tika Pratiwi on Google Maps.

However, their cashflow woes were first reported in January 2020 by The Straits Times when vendors pulled out due to delayed payments of up to a year.

Its store at the Zhongshan Building in Kuala Lumper subsequently shut in September 2020.

Top images by Naiise and Ray Tan on Google Maps.