In brief

On 22 February 2023, the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) successfully obtained a court order against Triple Lifestyle Marketing Pte. Ltd. (TLM), a water system retailer, over unfair trading practices. The State Courts granted the judgment against TLM and its director after they failed to show up in court.

In more detail


TLM supplies water dispensers, alkaline water filtration systems and maintenance service packages to consumers. Between January 2018 and October 2022, a high number of customer complaints were lodged against TLM, prompting action from the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE).

On 30 November 2022, the CCCS applied to the State Courts for a court order against TLM over unfair trading practices under the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act (CPFTA). The unfair trading practices included the following:

  • TLM falsely claimed that TLM or its products were accredited and Thomson Medical Centre was one of its customers.
  • TLM falsely claimed that its water dispenser was free for a limited period of time.
  • TLM misled consumers by claiming that it would repair or replace faulty water dispensers or provide the change of water filters when requested by consumers under the maintenance service package, or misled consumers by giving false excuses about its delay or inability to do so.
  • TLM accepted payments for its maintenance service packages, which included a one-year warranty for its "tankless" water dispensers, when it knew or ought to have known that it would be unable to provide such repair or replacement services within the warranty period.
  • TLM misled consumers by claiming that alkaline and/or filtered water can prevent or improve the condition of diseases such as cancer, diabetes, kidney disorders, etc.

Our previous alert discussing the unfair trading practices that TLM engaged in and subsequent action by the CASE and the CCCS may be found here.

Court judgment

Following the failure of TLM and its director to appear in court on 22 February 2023, the State Courts granted the judgment against TLM and its director. The judgment included the following orders:

  • TLM had engaged in the various unfair practices identified by the CCCS and must stop such conduct.
  • TLM's director must stop knowingly abetting, aiding, permitting or procuring TLM to engage in the various identified unfair practices.
  • TLM and its director must publish a full-page public notice with details of the court orders in four local newspapers at their own expense. If they fail to do so, the CCCS may publish a notice in any one of the newspapers and claim the cost from them.
  • For the next three years, TLM and its director must publish details of the orders made against them on the landing page of any platform used to market TLM's goods or services. TLM's director must also publish the details of the court order made against him on the landing page of any platform he uses to market TLM's goods and/or services or similar goods or services.
  • For the next three years, TLM must notify any customer in writing about the court order and obtain their written acknowledgement before a contract is signed.
  • TLM and its director are to pay SGD 12,000 to the CCCS as costs of the proceedings.

Key takeaway

This case exemplifies the CCCS' strict stance against companies that persistently and egregiously engage in unfair trading practices in violation of the CPFTA; TLM faced not only bad publicity but legal consequences as a result of its actions. Companies should therefore ensure their compliance with all applicable consumer protection laws.