By now, you’ve probably heard of the Mdada saga regarding local celebrities Pornsak Prajakwit, Michelle Chia and Addy Lee.
Yup, it’s the newest “influencer” drama of the year, except that this time, it has to do with a “generation gap” of sorts.
After starting Mdada, an e-commerce multi-channel live-streaming company, with Chia and Lee in 2020, Pornsak recently announced his departure from the company via an Instagram post.
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In the post, it was revealed that he has “lofty dreams and ambitions” and that he aspires to be “the ideal live-streamer – one with a personal touch, one whom everybody can entrust his/her purchases, and one who is there to entertain as well”.
He also spoke to AsiaOne, where he disclosed that he chose to leave his position as director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at the company due to a “generation gap” between him and the two other co-founders.
However, after his announcements, Mdada shot back by issuing a statement regarding his resignation.
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According to Mdada’s statement, Pornsak “did not state any of the matters [that] he has now raised” when he resigned from the company on 25 October last year.
In fact, he even thanked Mdada “for the opportunity given to him”.
Apart from that, it was also pointed out that Pornsak will be turning 41 this year, which isn’t that far off from Chia and Lee’s ages.
For reference, Chia is 47, and Lee is 51. (I mean, some of us have probably seen couples with larger age gaps before.)
In particular, Mdada indicated that they are “unclear” as to what the “generation gap” that Pornsak brought up meant, and that he already knew the ages of his two co-founders before collaborating with them.
Mdada also wrote that the company, including Chia and Lee, are “deeply disappointed that Pornsak has chosen to ventilate these issues in the public domain without first giving [Mdada, Chia and Lee] a proper chance to address his alleged concerns”.
And now, Pornsak has clarified (once again) his views on the matter.
Here’s what you need to know.
Pornsak’s Latest Response: “Generation Gap” Not About Age
When contacted by zaobao.sg recently, Pornsak said he is still grateful for Mdada.
He also clarified that he did not indicate the issues in his resignation letter as he hoped that the company’s staff would continue working towards their original goals.
With regards to the “generation gap” that he brought up, he added that it was not about Chia and Lee’s age.
Instead, he explained that it was about the differences in their ideas and thought processes.
He then raised an example of how people of similar ages may also have different ways of handling the same issue due to the difference in their upbringing.
Feels Like His Statements Were Misunderstood
Regarding how Pornsak said that he wants to be a live streamer with a “personal touch” who can earn the trust of his customers, Mdada wrote that it is “deeply concerned by any suggestion or innuendo that Mdada or its key shareholders are in any way untrustworthy with customers’ purchases or orders, or that Mdada is lacking in corporate governance”.
“Such suggestions are wholly untrue and baseless.” the company added.
In response, Pornsak said that Mdada “misunderstood his statement”.
According to him, there is no definite right or wrong when it comes to the beliefs and values that people have when it comes to live streaming—there are only differences.
He raised (another) example of how one bank publicly announcing that it operates with integrity does not automatically mean that all the other banks do not operate with integrity.
He also noted that he never said that “his way was the only way”.
Did Not Leave Due to “Company’s Problems”
During the interview, Pornsak was also asked about the infamous Mdada incident last year, where customers failed to receive the goods that they had ordered after waiting for two months.
After the incident was exposed, Pornsak and Lee apologised to their customers on a live stream.
When asked if this incident was what triggered his choice to step down from Mdada’s management, he said that he left not because of the company’s problems but rather “future developments”.
Apart from that, when posed with the question of whether this incident will affect the friendship between him, Lee and Chia, Pornsak replied by saying that time will resolve all misunderstandings.
Pornsak also highlighted that the central message of his statement was to emphasise that he and his partners worked together and parted on good terms.
He added that he did not mean to provoke anyone with his statements, claiming that it is “not his style”.
Apart from that, he joked that he failed to express himself well enough in Chinese since he is Thai.
He also said that he would consider his words carefully in future statements.
Lee and Chia’s Latest Responses
Regarding the latest information that Pornsak has revealed in his interview with zaobao.sg, here’s what his former co-founders have to say.
When contacted by zaobao.sg, Lee responded via phone call that he is currently conducting live streams in Italy and that he is “busy earning money for Mdada”.
On the other hand, Chia did not respond to the request for comment.
After Pornsak left Mdada, Lee apparently took over the role of CEO, while Chia apparently took over the role of director.
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Featured Image: Left Profile + Mdada Live