SRI5000 splits from SLP International

/ The Edge Property
August 8, 2016 8:00 AM SGT
Tiong Bahru has evolved into an interesting enclave of indie cafés, coffee joints, artisanal bakeries and restaurants. Antique and art galleries, independent bookstore BooksActually, yoga studios and offices of creative agencies have also sprouted up in Singapore’s oldest housing estate, which is also the first to obtain conservation status.
Joining the milieu are the realtors of SRI, a real estate agency that opened its 2,000-sq-ft office space a month ago on the ground floor of a block on Eng Watt Street, off Seng Poh Road. The co-working space environment with its bar-height work tables is best suited for realtors who work flexible hours and, sometimes, remotely.
SRI, founded by managing partners Bruce Lye and Benson Koh two months ago, is a spin-off from SRI5000, which the duo co- founded six years ago as a division of SLP Realty. They have kept SRI, the acronym for Singapore Realtors Inc. “But we felt SRI5000 was too much of a mouthful,” explains Lye. “SRI is a brand that people already recognise, and it’s simpler, so we dropped ‘5000’.”
SRI trio (from left) Bruce Lye, Benson Koh and Tony Koe
The choice of Tiong Bahru was intentional, and the office’s location on Eng Watt Street is ideal, given its ample parking space. “Before we selected this location, we spent a week coming at different times of the day to make sure it wouldn’t be inconvenient for our agents.”
A well-honed tradition at SRI5000 was the adoption of “5000” by member agents for their vehicle registration numbers and the last four digits of their mobile phone numbers. The number has become synonymous with the team’s identity, and the tradition has continued in the new firm. “The number is still in our hearts,” says Lye. “One of our agents recently won the bid for the latest car number plate — SLF 5000 — and has put it on her new Lexus.”
Café culture
The Eng Watt Street unit now occupied by SRI was once a showroom of tile company Rice, which vacated the place last year when it moved into its own building on Henderson Road....