Cerita Cita-Cita IPC Shopping Centre: Popular Flagship Store [L2.03]
Cerita Cita-Cita IPC is a series where we interview home-grown, home-loved brands that are born and bred in Malaysia, for Malaysians. Follow us as we interview some of the nation’s most loved retailers on what is behind their inspiration and what it means to be Malaysian.
Remember those days when school was starting soon? Where would you get your stationery? Your Pilot G-2, your Stabilo Exam Grade pencils, your cute notebooks, your foolscap paper? To many Malaysian’s the name POPULAR has a special place in many of our hearts, especially as students and parents.
This Merdeka, IPC Shopping Centre wanted to find out what was it that made POPULAR Malaysian and how this year has been different for them.
Q: So tell us a little about POPULAR
A: POPULAR Book Co. (M) Sdn Bhd was established in Malaysia since year 1984 and is currently Malaysia’s largest bookstore chain. As a trilingual bookstore, we are proud to offer a wide variety of books in English, Malay and Chinese languages. In addition, we also offer a large selection of magazines, stationery, Gadgets & IT peripherals, as well as gifts, CDs & DVDS and many more!
Q: How long has POPULAR been at IPC Shopping Centre?
A: POPULAR first opened the doors of our IPC shopping Centre outlet in December 2003, it was the first such concept-store of its kind, and one of the POPULAR Flagship store in Malaysia. Blazing this trail, we decided it was time to renew our pledge to our loyal customers - as a purveyor of quality reading materials hence we had undergo a big renovation and refurbish the store on year 2017 revolving the concept of “INFINITY”.
This Flagship store has everything a book-lover needs to browse into INFINITY. That’s the concept for this store, because POPULAR takes pride in being your INFINITE reading partner, as you pursue knowledge and wisdom.
Q: Thank you for letting us in on some of the lesser known knowledge about this well-loved home grown brand. Now, since we’re in the midst of celebrating being Malaysian, what does POPULAR think it means to be Malaysian?
A: As a country with a rich mix of various cultures and traditions, to us being Malaysian means to embrace the rich heritage we have and live together in harmony, no matter the race.
Q: Indeed, as a country made up of difference races, traditions and cultures, Malaysia is a unique country in its own right. But from all this, what is your favourite thing about being Malaysian?
A: The ability to learn multiple languages. I believe one of the biggest advantages of being a Malaysian is being exposed to a multilingual environment. This enables us to lean languages such as English, Chinese and Malay aside from other dialects.
Q: What is the one thing that Malaysia has that no other place does?
A: Such a unique bookstore like POPULAR. To serve all the races in Malaysia, POPULAR provides a wide variety of reading material and they all in a wide range of languages English, Malay and Chinese. You can find whatever it is that you need right here! No matter the language or interest.
Q: Currently, we are in a very unique time. With the pandemic and everything that is going on, what does POPULAR think about the #KitaJagaKita movement?
A: To us, #KitaJagaKita means to look after ourselves and the people around us. At POPULAR, we always make the health and safety of our community, our top priority. Various kind of SOPs are in place at our bookstore and this includes sanitizing the store regularly, ensure customers scan their MySejahtera app and always having on their facemask. We also always encourage customers to go pay cashless if possible and maintain a 1-meter social distance.
Q: Thank you for spending your time with us so far. Now let’s talk about POPULAR during this pandemic. As a business, how has the pandemic affected POPULAR’s business?
A: In all honestly, POPULAR Malaysia was not immune to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the various control movement orders implemented by the government. This unprecedented situation affected our stores during the temporary closure period. However, we remain vigilant and have gotten back on our feet to work harder and overcome this challenge.
Q: Could you share with us more about what POPULAR has had to adjust as a business in order to survive during this pandemic?
A: During the pandemic, we saw more and more people shift to online purchasing. To deal with this, POPULAR shifted its efforts towards e-commerce and aimed to provide convenience to our customers. So, we launched our recent shopping feature which is the Order, Pick & Go service via WhatsApp. Customers can directly communicate with our store personnel via WhatsApp and make arrangements for their orders to be picked up at our bookstores nationwide or be sent to them directly via home delivery.
Q: Now, let’s talk a little bit about the future. What is POPULAR looking forward to the most?
A: We looking forward on this pandemic to get under control, everyone can get back to normal. To shop in a safe and unworried condition.
Q: Ok thank you for your time so far. One last question. What would POPULAR like to say to its customers?
A: POPULAR will continue having great promotions and book fairs. We also stay true to our goal of offering a wide variety of items to serve everyone’s needs from essential to entertainment and affordable price to ease everyone burden. At the same time, shop safe with us.
From now until 3 October, Shop and Sapot your local brands and retailers at IPC Shopping Centre. Spend a minimum of RM200 in 2 receipts and enjoy a RM10 e-voucher from our i-Counter at Level G. IPC Shopping Centre would like to thank all our retailers and shoppers for their continuous support.
Let’s Stay Safe and Spot Lokal. #KitaJagaKita