Push yourself out of your comfort zone for more growth, says Haslinda Alias, CEO of GOGOPASAR, online grocery platform and subsidiary of FGV Integrated Farming Holdings Sdn Bhd.
“Challenge is an opportunity for progress, and an opportunity to discover something unique that is not easily accessible to anyone but the rare few who see potential in the challenge,” says the wise businesswoman who is mother to four young adults, having recently become a new grandmother.
Haslinda, popular known as Lynn, has been running various businesses for 25 years now, with all the companies under her helm having a similar trait at its core – sustainability and social impact.
Her previous endeavour before GOGOPASAR was as a shareholder for a biodegradable packaging company.
“I am focused on ensuring that the businesses I run comply with ESG standards as these are central factors that measure ethical impact and sustainability of investments,” she adds.
A true social entrepreneur at heart, Haslinda started GOGOPASAR bearing one main purpose – to give back to the community and help those in need.
Beginning her venture together with her son Raphael in February 2020, their timing in starting GOGOPASAR was impeccable as it was just before the pandemic where the company would soon find itself providing online business opportunities to so many in need during movement controls and social restrictions.
Later, in September 2020, competing with many established players for seed investment by FGV Holdings, the agro supply chain leader chose to invest in Lynn. A new unit called FGV Integrated Farming was created to begin the digital transformation and sustainability work within the FGV agro supply chain network towards sustainability.
As the popular saying goes, give a man a fish and he eats for one day, teach a man how to fish and he eats every day of his life- which is the driving force behind GOGOPASAR.
Currently helping members of the B40 segment and National Higher Education Fund Corp (PTPN) borrowers to pay back their loans, GOGOPASAR’s GOGOPRENEUR Programme enables this segment to manage their own online business by digitally marketing and selling products with training and capital fully subsidised by PTPN.
“ I aim to make a social impact with GOGOPASAR by training those struggling to make a living and upskilling them with digital marketing capabilities and ‘technopreneur skills’, which is all in line with the government’s 12th Malaysian Plan to reach high-income nation status in the next few years,” she says.
Providing food baskets for various organisations to support their ‘B2CSR’ initiatives as she loves to call it, GOGOPASAR is also currently in zakat projects with Majlis Agama Wilayah Persekutuan (MAIWP) to distribute food baskets to those in need in various communities around the Klang Valley every day.
In January 2021, the team at GOGOPASAR set up a GOGOCARE team to join the Peace Malaysia Foundation in providing aid and food to Pahang flood victims through 3 phases of the Flood Relief Mission, of which GOGOPASAR donated 5 tonnes of fresh chicken (almost 5,000 chickens). The movement control order which was then enforced did not prevent them from extending help to communities in need.
These and many other CSR projects partnering with various NGOs and government agencies such as Baitulmal, K2K Group, MAIS, MARA, MDEC and HRDF are some of the initiatives and partnerships have taken on by GOGOPASAR in their social entrepreneurship efforts.
Affordable Organic Produce
Having now moved to a new 30,000-sq ft (1,858 sqm) warehouse in Selayang, Selangor, GOGOPASAR is expanding rapidly with multiple revenue streams.
“It is almost a whole ecosystem here. FGV Integrated Farming has joined us in sharing office space and there is a dry and wet area for a variety of agro-food products,” Lynn says.
GOGOPASAR has more than 5,000 stock-keeping units (SKUs) including wet and dry items.
A newly launched French Cafe called Maison D’être and a farmer’s market-style fresh produce store called Marche at this warehouse and distribution centre in Selayang is currently in the works. Lynn envisions customers relaxing with a coffee and croissant while doing their grocery shopping here.
“Due to the high demand for our affordable and high-quality organic produce, people have come all the way to physically buy them from our warehouse, and so we decided to design and build an organic market for that segment of consumers,” she says.
Lynn hopes in future that by planting the seeds of growth in this company mostly driven by a young and technically savvy team nurtured and guided by herself, she can pave the way for the future generation to take over her legacy and values in providing for the needy and supporting the community ethically and sustainably.