H-D of Singapore celebrates a quarter-century of Hog Heaven. Plus, you won’t guess which type of Harley-Davidson came to Singapore first…
Photos: Derryn Wong
Harley-Davidson of Singapore (HDS), the authorised dealer for Harley-Davidson (H-D) motorcycles here, celebrated its 25th anniversary with a bash at popular motorcycle-themed eatery Handlebar yesterday.
More than 400 guests were in attendance, which included a strong turnout from the Harley-Owners Group (HOG) and members/representatives of the various motorcycle clubs in Singapore, as well as enthusiasts, friends, and industry figures.
As a night of celebration, HDS, both gave thanks and received it equal measure too.
Mr Teo Hock Seng (pictured above), group managing director of Komoco Holdings, the parent company of Harley-Davison of Singapore, who was instrumental in the founding of HDS back in 1993, paid warm tribute to the staff of HDS, its partners, customers, and more.
In attendance from Harley-Davidson were Mr Nigel Keough, General Manager, Emerging Markets for H-D, and Mr Johan Kleinsteuber, the Managing Director for Asia Emerging Markets for H-D.
From left to right: Ms Dorothy Chan, General Manager, Komoco Motorcycles Pte Ltd Mr Nigel Keough, General Manager, Emerging Markets. Harley-Davidson Motor Company. Mr Teo Hock Seng, Executive Chairman, Komoco Motorcycles Pte Ltd Mr Johan Kleinsteuber.Managing Director. Asia Emerging Markets. Harley-Davidson Motor Company.
“We have great products, but what it comes back to is customer experience. There’s not anyone who does it any better than these guys here (HDS). I want to congratulate you on 25 fine years, not just average ones, but great years, serving great customers here in Singapore. So thank you guys,” said Mr Keough at the event.
“(HDS)…is our oldest dealership in Southeast Asia, kudos to you Harley-Davidson of Singapore! And it wouldn’t be possible without the dedication of HDS team: Including Mr Teo, and I would also like to thank in particular the guys who have been here since the beginning, Dorothy, Gerald, Kelly and more…without your commitment and without your love for the brand, none of this would have been possible,” said Mr Kleinstuber.
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Harley-Davidson is one of the most enduring and recognisable motorcycle brands, but its had a rough decade as it grapples with the ageing of its core customer base – Baby Boomers – and the expectations of new motorcycle buyers.
But as a result, it’s arguably one of the most exciting times ever to be a Harley-Davidson customer: After decades of producing classic Milwaukee metal in the vein of the Fat Boy, Road King, Ultra Glide and more, H-D has not only brought major tech updates to its core line-up, but is also branching out into totally new segments for the first time in its 115-year history.
HDS itself expanded abroad too for the first time in 2018, with Harley-Davidson Melaka set up as a subsidiary of Komoco Motors (Malaysia) Snd Bhd.
As for the first ‘Harley-Davidson’ model in Singapore, it was probably a mannequin rather than a Milwaukee hog since the clothes arrived before the bikes in HDS history.
Mr Teo recounted an anecdote from the founding of HDS and how Komoco nabbed the dealership for the motorcycle brand. In 1990, he travelled to H-D headquarters in Milwaukee, USA, and successfully bid for the business.
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However one criteria from H-D was that Motorclothes (the apparel and fashion label owned by H-D) debut first, so the H-D Motorclothes boutique at Ngee Ann City actually predates the HDS showroom.
Staff celebrate along with HDS at the bash