Let them eat chocolate


Mydin Mohamed Holdings managing director Haji Ameer Ali bin Mydin holding a 2kg pack of chocolate malt retailing for RM19.50 at Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia. A similar product from a popular brand sells for RM30.

Thousands of shoppers pack the Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia store at the Kelana Jaya LRT station in Petaling Jaya


The Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia, which opened last week at the Kelana Jaya LRT station in Petaling Jaya, continues to attract mobs of shoppers who are snapping up grocery items and essential goods.

The chain is run by Mydin Mohamed Holdings Bhd, which chose to set up the first branch the low-price Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia shops in the country here.

Prices are lower by between 30 to 40 percent for products similar to those offered by other establishments.

“It’s been a good day everyday since opening day,” said Mydin managing director, Haji Ameer Ali bin Mydin, who is all smiles, with the Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia brand fast gaining traction as the thousands of shoppers continued to pour into the store.

“Our prices at the shop are minimal and targeted to meet the needs of the urban poor people who are in the middle and lower income group who want good quality goods at a lower cost,” added Ameer who was present to ensure operations at the jam-packed store went like a hot knife through butter.

“We have about 1,000 products on the shelf but currenly only about 250 items are sold under the ‘Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia’brand. The rest will follow soon.

“Our prices are low. A 2kg popular chocolate malt powder sells for RM30 at normal shops but here at Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia is selling at RM19.50, now that’s a real cost saving of RM10.50!

“We have on record our cash registers, about 2,000 paid customers on the first three days of sale and we expect higher sales in the coming weeks as more people are aware of the cost savings of shopping here. Everyone who walked into our shop has come out smiling.

“The crowds come for our low-priced “Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia” branded goods which they quickly snap up from the shelves but not to worry as we replenish stocks within 15 minutes and we have a lorry that brings in new stocks every hour from our warehouse in Subang.

Ameer said that people asked him why the prices are lower than at other stores. His answer:.

“One of the reasons is our simple packaging which helps reduce cost. Another is branding and advertising is expensive and the advertising cost is factored into the pricing of goods (but not at Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia). Thirty percent of the price of goods is advertising cost.

“Here we thrive without advertising so, again, lower cost. Everyone recognises 1Malaysia; the PM is the brand,” he said referring to Prime Minister Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia slogan.

The empty shelves are replenished within 15 minutes to meet customer demand

“Also, we help local companies such as from Industri Kecil & Sederhana (IKS) Malaysia or small and medium entrepreneurs (SMEs) sell their products in the shop at lower prices.

The shop, strategically located in an urban area, is headed by a friendly team of 12, including a manager and a supervisor. Its low prices and wide array of products draws shoppers from surrounding neighbourhoods.

Azmi Mohd Ali, 55, a police officer, who came with his family, said he had heard about the shop opening on television. He concurred that prices were indeed lower for similar products sold at other establisments.

“Rising food prices have eaten deep into our pockets so the opening of Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia is timely,” he said.

Logeswaran, 21, a chef at a five-star hotel, was seen smiling, holding a carton of his favourite apple juice which was priced at RM2.50. He said: “I usually pay between RM4 to RM5 for a carton of apple juice from other supermarkets.

Michael Puah, an audit assistant and his girlfriend Claire Lu, a tax assistant, both 23, concurred that goods with the 1Malaysia brand were indeed about 30 to 40 percent cheaper than those sold at other places.