“I Seldom Visited Hawker Centres,” Says Manager-Turned-Hawker Who Now Runs Pizza Stall With Ex-Colleague
After her family’s chemical biz shut down, Ailyn Khoo and her ex-colleague Christina Chan became pizza hawkers at Bukit Timah Food Centre. This despite Ailyn’s mum insisting she “can’t take the hard life and it’s xim tia (heartache in Hokkien) for her to see me do this”.
Nestled within the outermost row of stalls at Bukit Timah Food Centre, That’s My Pizza is a one-month-old joint that serves Neapolitan-style pizzas. With lively Italian instrumental music blasting from its speakers and a large chalkboard showcasing the daily menu, the vibe here is fun and relaxed – much like the personalities of owners Christina Chan (left in pic), 40, and Ailyn Khoo (right), 46.
The first-time hawkers met in 2017 when they worked in a medium-sized chemical distribution company owned by Ailyn’s family – Ailyn was a HR manager while Christina worked as an executive assistant – and quickly bonded over a shared love of food and music. Despite having no F&B experience, Christina, in particular, always toyed with the idea of having her own food biz one day. “Instead of just consuming, I also wanted to be able to create something. I love cooking for my family and friends but it was limited to an inner circle. When we start a business, we can reach out to people we don’t know.”
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