34-year-old Derrick Lee runs his chicken rice stall with the support of his employees

The median age of Singapore’s hawkers is 59 years old, a clear sign that the sector needs more young blood. Thankfully, more young Singaporeans have stepped up to the plate in recent years. Some have picked up the baton from their parents, grandparents or even great-grandparents. And there are those who want to strike it out on their own like Mr Derrick Lee.

The 34-year-old business graduate from National University of Singapore was formerly an operation executive in the oil and gas industry. He joined the Entrepreneurship Program offered by Fei Siong Food Management in 2015, and was paired with veteran hawker Mr Foo Joo Khoon. After learning the ropes of the trade, he started Ah Khoon Authentic Hainanese Chicken Rice to sell one of his all-time favorite local dishes.

chicken rice
A plate of Hainanese Chicken Rice from Ci Yuan Hawker Centre’s Ah Khoon Hainanese Chicken Rice Stall.

How is Derrick’s business doing so far? Does he regret leaving a cushy job for the hawker trade? What’s his plan for the future? Hear from him in this video.