With a background in Food & Beverage, Kamil Folton and his wife started a website for both foodies and bartenders looking to explore locally sourced ingredients. IB HQ; is a bar in Singapore which showcases the results of all their research.
What’s your story?
I’ve lived and worked in the Food & Beverage industry whole my life. Lived across Europe and Asia, last 5,5 years, and taught me the tricks of the trade that shaped me up with full knowledge to be able to start a consulting company called Sunday Fun Day in 2017. In 2016, my wife and I started a website called Indigenous Bartender with “Passion for flavours, Respect to Cultures” with which we did pop-ups around the South East Asia region and in September 2018 we built a brick & mortar space for our website called IB HQ (Indigenous Bartender Headquarter) which is bars introducing all our research through cocktails and mocktails in form of house-made liqueurs, syrups, cordials, tinctures and infused spirits.
What excites you most about your industry?
F&B industry is so diverse, colorful and flavorful when you delve into all the different cuisines and cultures. But what excites me most is the fact that food and drinks bring people together and bring joy.
What’s your connection to Asia?
Singapore has been great to me. I met my wife, opened a business and I am happy to call it home. In 5 year of living in Singapore, I have been fortunate to travel a lot and learn so much about the cultures, explore their culinary traditions and found so many new exciting ingredients that I fell in love with.
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore, it has always been a melting pot for trade, and you can see the diversity in ethnic groups. I love the opportunities that arise here.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Never stop learning!!!
Who inspires you?
My wife and everyone I get to meet and know in person.
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
On a recent trip to India, I was blown away by the diversity of the country, and the way the local people recycle and work on sustainability. What blew me away most was the self-sufficiency of the bar community across India and drive to create, build equipment, products that you can not get for several reasons. – a market that can offer a lot, but is very underestimated.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Nothing, I love the way I have it 🙂
How do you unwind?
On the sofa, watching tv, travelling, catching up with friends. Chit chatting with my wife about anything…
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Hm… hard one, Borneo you got everything you need there, great mountains to climb, beaches, interesting culture, great food, tropical forest …… the perfect mixture 🙂
Everyone in business should read this book:
Setting the Table; The Transforming Power of Hospitality Business, by Danny Meyer
Shameless plug for your business:
This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews
Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.