Etika appoints Santharuban as Advend CEO


HALAL beverage company Etika Holdings has appointed Santharuban Thurai Sundaram (picture) as CEO of its newly acquired Advend Group of Cos.

Santharuban will be responsible for the expansion of Advend Systems, and developing go-to market strategies for Advend Group’s contactless vending and retail experience for Malaysia and Singapore.

He has two decades of marketing and commercial experience, and led Etika to earn over 200 accolades and recognitions for their visionary product launches and campaigns.

“In his new role as CEO of Advend Group, Santharuban will bring his brand of creativity to strengthen the company’s brand presence and footprint in Malaysia and Singapore,” Etika said in a statement yesterday.

The group had acquired Singapore-based vending business Advend Systems Pte Ltd in December last year, making it the largest independent vending solutions provider in Malaysia and Singapore.

With 10,000 vending machines across both countries, the firm is expanding to increase its presence in high traffic areas and strategic locations.

The new vending distribution business is in line with Advend Group’s expanded new channel capabilities, which include e-commerce and innovative partnerships, among others. Advend Group will also expand its cashless payment offering and enhance its transaction tracking capabilities in the near future.

As the group adopts digitisation and data analytics in its operations, the new technology will enable Advend Group and its business partners to customise their product and service offerings to suit today’s consumers.

“Having the data and insights on hand, we can make decisions quickly and act on any challenges that may pose a significant threat to our business.

“These digitisation functions are necessary if we are going to pull through these volatile times,” Santharuban said.