And yet there is no copyright for recipes (Singapore markets in everything)

How much is a recipe worth?

About $1.8 million, according to the owner of Kay Lee Roast Meat Joint, who boosted the sale price of her Singapore eatery by that amount when she put it on the market this year.

Betty Kong and her husband want S$3.5 million ($2.8 million) for their 60-plastic-stool establishment, a premium over the S$1.25 million assessed value of the site. The price includes the property, their recipe for roasting duck, pork ribs and crispy pig skin as well as other Cantonese-style classics, plus three months of cooking lessons — and, presumably, the loyal clientele that lines up outside, sometimes for more than an hour.

The article is interesting throughout.  How about this bit?:

The Roast Meat Joint generates sales of around S$2,000 a day, she said, or S$620,000 annually, assuming it’s shut one day a week and three days for Lunar New Year holidays. Profit margin is 60 percent, according to her broker Raymond Lo at Knight Frank LLP. The asking price is 5.6 times annual sales, compared with the 1.1 multiple for the Singapore benchmark Straits Times Index. (FSSTI) It would take six years to recoup the recipe premium.

How about this paragraph, from a critic:

“Two million dollars for a recipe? Too much,” said Leong, known by patrons as Grandma or ‘Poh Poh,’ shaking her head in disbelief and counseling against giving up a line of work she herself has been doing for 53 years. “You will start developing dementia if you stop working.”

And this, from the woman selling the recipe:

Her knees are giving out, she said, and she can’t have replacement surgery because it takes four months to recover. Instead, she plans to start closing for two days a week, Mondays and Tuesdays. And to keep dreaming of an easy retirement — visiting her son in Australia, and eating someone else’s food for a change.

“Fish and chips in London, Kentucky Fried Chicken in America,” she mused, insisting on maintaining the fortitude that has helped her build her business. “I won’t haggle over the price. I will stick to it.”

The full article is here, and for the pointer I thank Alex Kowalski.


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