“TappooCity Lautoka is more than a shopping Mall. It is already the hangout of choice that has significantly lifted the aesthetics of this beloved City.
It is our intent that through the unmatched quality service and quality products, which is now the Tappoo way, we will transform the shopping culture here.”
Mr Kanti Lal Tappoo, OBE
Tappoo Group of Companies
Honorable Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama
Friends and Family.
Firstly, let me warmly welcome you all to tonight’s function. Thank you for joining us to celebrate this important milestone for our Tappoo Group of Companies.
Prime Minister, we are deeply appreciative of the time you have taken to officiate on this historic occasion.
You have been with us since our very first TappooCity complex in Suva which you officially opened. And, four years ago, you officiated the groundbreaking at this very location.
TappooCity Lautoka is more than a shopping Mall. It is already the hangout of choice that has significantly lifted the aesthetics of this beloved City.
It is our intent that through the unmatched quality service and quality products, which is now the Tappoo way, we will transform the shopping culture here.
Prime Minister you described it well at the ground-breaking ceremony in 2013 when you said that TappooCity Lautoka would emerge from the ground, and I quote: “to be a symbol of a better future for every resident of this wonderful city,” unquote.
If we were to use one word to describe 2017, that word would be ‘visionary’.
2017 was when Tappoo Group was recognized for its efforts in pursuing the visionary path of our founding father, Tappoo Kanji.
We received the Supreme Award, which was the prime award at the Prime Minister’s International Business Awards for 2017. Accepting this award was an emotional moment for the Tappoo family. It led us to revisit our founding father’s ideals, vision, and his inspirational life. It reinforced our faith and belief in the track we have adopted in our business pursuits, as well as in our charitable work. In fact, the award has served to motivate us to excel even further.
Talking about vision, Prime Minister, we believe your Government is leading the way. This was especially so in the international arena when Fiji became the first small island state to lead the Conference of the Party’s in climate negotiations.
Again we congratulate you, Prime Minister, and your government for successfully leading this global drive.
Numerous gains have come from this, and no doubt, Fiji and the region, will continue to benefit from COP23 as a result of this visionary leadership. Your efforts to advance Fiji as a world leader, more than just a pristine vacation spot, is a commendable vision which ALL Fijians can be proud of.
The Tappoo Group of Companies also offers you our best wishes and support as Fiji undertakes the COP Presidency.
Fiji is not short on examples of visionary leadership. Our remarkable rugby sevens team that won Gold at the Rio Olympics demonstrated the ultimate respect this nation has in the manner in which it won, and in the manner in which the Gold Medals were received by the team at the Medal Award Ceremony.
Our Fiji Bati Team did us all proud at the Rugby League World Cup last year when they, in inspirational style, finished amongst the World’s Top 4.
Prime Minister we admire the way you have taken the nation forward by giving all Fijians equal treatment and equal opportunities. This, for the first time in Fiji’s history, is now enshrined in our Constitution. This will encourage every citizen, regardless of ethnicity or religion, to do the best for our country.
The Tappoo Group has invested in excess of $30million to build TappooCity Lautoka. It was an investment necessary for the standard you see before you today. This vision would not have been possible without the cooperation of all our partners, local and international.
We are also proud of our tenants at TappooCity Lautoka. Quite a few of these are young entrepreneurs and small to medium size enterprises who have the opportunity to grow with the success of TappooCity Lautoka. This opportunity will further boost the confidence of those who have the vision to start new businesses in Fiji.
We especially want to express our gratitude to our key partner, the Lautoka City Council and the Hon. Minister Praveen Bala, (who was the City Administrator at the time), who have been very supportive of this project. We are delighted that our confidence to undertake this project, despite the risks, is paying off.
Every day now this complex is buzzing with life; crowds of locals and tourists alike come to enjoy the shopping and the food & entertainment.
Prime Minister, Fiji can be rest assured that we will continue to invest in our homeland. Exciting work has already begun in our other business fronts. As many of you are aware, the Tappoo Group has diverse business interests which include tourism and travel, retail and wholesale, manufacturing and exports, motor vehicle sales and servicing, commercial real estate and investments.
We also strongly believe in our Corporate Social Responsibilities. Amongst others, we are currently doing preliminary planning for Two projects in Sigatoka, the community in which we were raised.
One is the beautification project along the town’s riverfront. The other is the construction of a children’s park on a location where my father first started his small workshop. Talks are still underway, and we are hopeful that we will soon be able to finalize the details so that ground works can commence.
In addition, and in tribute to our founder, and to mark this auspicious milestone, I am happy to announce that the Tappoo Group, through its Tappoo Charitable Foundation, will invest a further $150,000 towards projects for the poor and needy people of Fiji. In due course, we will release details of how these funds will be utilised.
We take our role as corporate leaders very seriously. In addition to our commitment to giving back to the community that has made us what we are, we will always strive to be an exemplary corporate citizen of our beloved Nation. We have held gold membership status with the Fiji Revenue and Customs Services ever since its inception, and we are fully committed to maintaining that at all times.
Finally, Ladies and Gentlemen, I thank you all for taking out your precious time and sharing this important occasion with our family tonight. God bless our beloved nation.
Good night and please enjoy the rest of the evening.