Case Study 6 – Bankrupt and Successful Businesswoman?


Former one-hit-wonder Stella Ng has recently been declared bankrupt by the Singapore court. She’s a mandopop singer before her foray into the chocolate cake business.

Back in 2007, Zaobao reported that her cake business in Taiwan was raking in S$500,000 a month in sales. She had obtained the franchise rights from Awfully Chocolate in Singapore and opened 3 such cake shops in Taipei, with much success apparently.

She later split with her shareholder and started her own Black As Chocolate cake shops, obviously (to me) selling the same stuff, but still as successful.

The details are not clear, but according to the asiaone report, she somehow owed (and still owe) Awfully Chocolate a total sum of $249,000 for violating the franchise contract. To chase for payment, the firm had sent her a letter of statutory demand, which she ignored. And then the firm sued her for bankruptcy.

If her business is indeed as successful as reported, I wonder why she would not simply pay up and just settle the problem.

Can a person be both bankrupt and successful in business?

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  1. somtimes it makes me ponder too, what really makes a person bankrupt even when he/she seems to has amass a fortune.

  2. she is rich in Taiwan, poor in Singapore. Even if she is bankrupt in singapore, if she does not intend to return to singapore, there is nothing to lose and nothing the authorities can do to her.

  3. Hmmm, if you have millions in assets but no money in the bank then you are technically bankrupt, right? It’s all about cash flow… because she can’t pay interest on loans, salaries of employees, cake suppliers etc.

  4. she has franchise rights.
    so must appear to be successful to be successful frachisor.

    … feels like all those MLM recruitors

  5. that’s funny.. meaning all taiwanese can start business here, and declare bankrupt when it’s not going well without liabilities, and reap profit when it goes well? what an investment heaven.

  6. Ya.. she does not want to pay the damages so she let them bankrupt her loh.

    It’s only technical.. and i’m sure stella does not intend to start any business in singapore.. so it does not matter to her.

  7. This is more an ethical issue. She should pay up the amount to Awfully Chocolate if she is making money. I am disgusted by her behaviour. Act like a naive and sweet girl in her singing career but do such shameless things.

  8. well, solo, how do you know that it’s not awfully choco that that’s bullying her ? Revenue does not equal to net profit!!. there are many examples of franchisors exploiting franchisees, milking them , and not giving the help or aid as promised.

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