John Cheng is the Managing Director at Cheng Yew Heng Candy Factory, Singapore’s oldest and only sugar manufacturer producing traditional rock sugar, black and red jaggery sugar since 1947. The company also supplies ingredients like sugar, flour and alterative sweeteners to the food industry. In 2018, he founded Innovate 360, Singapore’s first food incubator with facilities. The incubator helps more than 30 startups in areas of mentorship, funding, expertise, and access to markets. It is an accredited mentor partner supported by the Singapore government and recognized by Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) as a food technology partner in food security. In 2020, he launched an e-commerce platform foodculture.sg that helps companies go digital, better engage customers, and go global.
John is an important driver in the Singapore food innovation ecosystem. He is the Chairman and co-founder for Feed 9 Billion, an open innovation ecosystem platform, that looks at promoting sustainability and innovation through collaboration to feed 9 billion people by 2050. Under his leadership, it launched the Good Food Startup Manual: Singapore edition to help food entrepreneurs in their startup journey. He is also member of the Ministry’s of Trade’s Pro-enterprise Panel (PEP) that helps companies overcome regulatory channels. He is also a part of the Singapore Food Story (SFS) Thematic Scientific Evaluation Panel.
Despite graduating from the Singapore Management University (SMU) after more than a decade, John is an active alumnus, co-founder and president of the SMU Business Families Alumni Group that connects next generation business families owners. In 2017, joined Club-100 @ North West Community Development Council which helps foster the culture of community involvement and philanthropy. In 2019, he was part of “Imagine Better” project that raises funds to help students through bursaries and continues to help his alma mater in philanthropic causes. He holds position at the Singapore Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI)’s Youth Business Affairs Committee Executive Committee and the Singapore Manufacturer Federation’s Youth Network Committee. In 2019, he was recognized as The Peak’s “Future Shaper” and Prestige Magazine’s 40 Under 40. He is on the 2020 Gen.T list by Tatler Magazine recognizing leaders of tomorrow who are shaping Asia’s future.