Most Malaysian grew up with Julie’s biscuits and it’s easy to find the attractive Julie’s logo – a smiling young girl with blonde pigtails on the supermarket shelves. But, did you know that Julie’s is a Malaysian brand?
Many will surprise to discover the origin of this well-loved biscuits brand. Julie’s Biscuits was founded by Perfect Food Manufacturing (M) Sdn Bhd – the brainchild of Su Chin Hock a Malaccan entrepreneur. He opened up the first Perfect Food factory with just 200 workers in Alor Gajah, Melaka in 1981.
Su Chin Hock was previously an accountant and he had also worked in the tiling and construction industry. Growing up in poverty with 10 siblings, biscuits were considered as a luxury for him.
Julie’s was born in a factory in Malacca, the brainchild of Su Chin Hock
Su then decided to go into manufacturing when he realised that 95% of biscuits available in the market were imported products. He thought Malaysians could also do a great job of producing biscuits and exporting them globally.
As a visionary man, he established his first biscuit factory in Alor Gajah, Malacca in 1981. With just limited manpower, he managed to create an R&D team to bake biscuits under his brand. Today, the group which is called Perfect Food Manufacturing (M) Sdn Bhd owns three biscuit plants in Malacca – two in Alor Gajah and one in Masjid Tanah.
As the local market was full of Chinese biscuit brands with long names, Su then came out with Julie – a common name that was easy to remember
After baking the first few batches of biscuits, he knew that his factory has the potential to enter the global market. But, there was something more important that he needed to do in order to make everyone remember its name.
Su said the local market was full of Chinese biscuit brands with long names and he needed something more catchy and easy to remember. That was how he came up with Julie – a common name that was easy to remember. It was in 1985 that the brand was officially established as Julie’s.
Its peanut butter sandwich became popular and has propelled Perfect Food Manufacturing to be formidable biscuit manufacturer
Since its inception, Julie’s Biscuits have produced a variety of biscuits such as the classic cream crackers, love letters and sandwich biscuits. Malaysians would be familiar with its peanut butter sandwich biscuits – conveniently packed in bright orange packaging. It was peanut butter sandwich biscuits that have propelled Julie’s Biscuits to be a formidable manufacturer.
The brand currently exports to 80 different countries
Julie’s Biscuits can be founded in almost hypermarkets and in fact, the brand has grown to over 80 different countries. Some of the countries that the manufacturer currently exports to include China, its biggest export market, the US, Mongolia, Australia, Taiwan and the Middle East region.
The brand has been in the market for 35 years and it has still been using the same ingredients, without any plans on using cheaper or lower grade substitutes to preserve the original taste.
Julie’s has partnered with Hershey’s and produced six variants of cookies
The brand has attracted international brand to collaborate with them. In 2014, Hershey’s has partnered with Julies’s Biscuits. The American brand was impressed with Julie’s small factory and their strong presence the overseas. The collaboration has led them to launch six variants of Julie’s Hershey’s cookies which were sold in all 10 ASEAN countries.
Just recently, in January 1st, 2021, Julie’s has partnered with Singapore creative agency to rebrand its corporate identity. The rebrand will be rolled out in Malaysia and Singapore first and will enter the export markets early this year.
Having grown from a humble factory with only 200 staff into Malaysia’s largest biscuit exporter, Julie’s hopes to set an example for other local SMEs that aspire to grow their businesses overseas.