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Customers left in the lurch after bridal shop Love Nest in City Gate suddenly shuts down, employees allegedly owed months of wages

The company had received winding down orders in January 2023, but continued to sell packages that were valid till 2025. CASE confirmed that 17 reports have been made, and MOM is investigating.

At least 50 couples and their upcoming nuptials have been affected by the apparent sudden closure of Love Nest, and its linked company, Love Story. (Photo: Getty Images)
At least 50 couples and their upcoming nuptials have been affected by the apparent sudden closure of Love Nest, and its linked company, Love Story. (Photo: Getty Images)

UPDATE (7 April): The Ministry of Manpower has said it is investigating Love Nest Holdings and its related entities. The Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management is also assisting 8 employees of Love Nest's related entities Hawk Eye (Singapore) Pte Ltd and LNHG (SG) Pte Ltd with claims of unpaid salaries.

SINGAPORE — At least 50 couples and their upcoming nuptials have been affected by the apparent sudden closure of Love Nest, its associated entity L’atelier, and its linked company, Love Story, which provides pre-wedding photoshoot packages and rental of wedding attire as well as jewellery and home interior services.

According to Shin Min Daily News, the wedding company’s store at City Gate was empty and locked up when a reporter visited on Wednesday (3 April).

Calls to the company went unanswered as well. A security guard shared that some couples had gathered outside the shop the previous day and the police had visited as well, Shin Min reported.

The Love Nest Facebook page and website remain operational but Love Story’s Google business profile indicates that the business is temporarily closed.

The Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) told Yahoo Southeast Asia on Wednesday that it received 17 consumer complaints regarding the closure of Love Nest and its associated entities L’atelier and Love Story Wedding Boutique.

According to CASE president Melvin Yong, consumers had reported that they engaged Love Nest, L’atelier and Love Story Wedding Boutique, for services such as pre-wedding photography, make-up artists, rental of wedding outfits, and had already made payment.

"However, they were notified on 2 April by Love Nest that it and its associated entities would be temporarily closed, without any clarity on when these companies would reopen and honour their contractual obligations. The total contractual amount for these affected consumers stands at over $58,000," Yong said in response to queries from Yahoo.

CASE is assisting affected consumers. Consumers who require assistance with their disputes can approach CASE for assistance (hotline: 6277 5100, website: www.case.org.sg).

According to a spokesperson for the Ministry of Manpower and the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM), as of 6 April 2024, the TADM is assisting 8 employees of Love Nest Holding’s related entities, Hawk Eye (Singapore) Pte Ltd and LNHG (SG) Pte Ltd, with claims for non-payment of salaries.

"As Love Nest Holding is under liquidation, TADM has advised those affected to file their claims through the appointed liquidator. TADM has also referred the affected employees who require employment assistance to NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute (e2i)," the spokesperson said.

The Ministry of Manpower is also investigating Love Nest Holding and its related entities for possible offences under the Employment Act, the spokesperson added.

"We would like to remind employers to pay salaries on time to their employees. Employees who require assistance on salary claims should approach TADM early at www.tal.sg/tadm/contact-us."

Affected customers allegedly informed through text about the sudden closure

User Dragonnitex, who paid in full for a pre-wedding shoot and rental of wedding attire, took to Reddit on 1 April to share that he was informed that the company had not been paying salaries to employees for several months and they had walked out.

When he visited the shop on the same day, it seemed like only one employee was manning the store and she said that employees had left group chats as they were “going on maternity [leave]” or “going home”.

User pixel7 shared on Singaporebrides forum that the company had allegedly sent a message to inform customers that it would temporarily closing its operations from 2 April until further notice, citing “unforeseen circumstances and financial challenges”.

It further elaborated that “all services will be temporarily unavailable” and that it was “working diligently to resolve any ongoing issues and resume operations as soon as possible”. A customer service phone number was provided, but when dialed, no one picked up.

Affected groom Ramsey Teo, 30, told Yahoo that he was also caught off guard, as prior to 1 April, the company had been responsive in the Whatsapp group chat with him.

His bride had also gone for a gown fitting as recently 17 February, hence he did not expect to receive news that the company would be ceasing operations before his wedding in November 2024.

He and his wife had signed up for a $8,000 package that included a pre-wedding shoot and rental of wedding outfits at a wedding fair in October last year, and were informed that they had to utilise the package by end of 2024 or they may have to pay extra fees.

However, Teo, who works as an executive, counts himself lucky as he did not make full payment yet as he was “unhappy with their services”. He was planning to only pay the full amount after his wedding day.

He also shared that other couples had paid up to $10,000 in full to the company without receiving any of the promised services.

Company is undergoing liquidation, allegedly owes employees months worth of wages

A forum user on Singaporebrides said that they had contacted CASE and were informed that the company was undergoing liquidation, while another user was told to contact the liquidator instead as “the company does not have money to repay”.

A check on the internet showed that Love Nest Holdings was given a winding up order on 13 January 2023. The ACRA website also lists it as being "In Liquidation", with BDO Advisory named as the liquidator.

However, the forum showed users purchasing wedding packages from the company as recently as January 2024, and that the company had sold packages that could be utilised up to 2025.

Knotz co-founder Evan Ong, who has helped connect some of the affected couples with other businesses, shared with Shin Min Daily News that about 50 couples had spent about $200,000 with Love Nest and Love Story in wedding services that were yet to be utilised.

These were similar to figures Teo had shared with Yahoo, based on a group chat set up for affected customers.

Several had filed police reports and complaints with CASE, Ong said.

An employee, who did not want to be named, told the Chinese paper that he had been owed two months’ salary. He estimated that more than 20 employees were affected and owed at least $100,000 in wages or payments.

The employee added that the owner was currently uncontactable and the affected employees planned to file a report with the MOM.

Another employee, who also declined to be named, said that several full-time photographers with the company had been owed up to 3 months’ salary, amounting to $10,000.

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