S’pore Influencer Slammed for Asking for Ang Bao Online & Giving 20% Back to the Highest Contributor


Last Updated on 2023-01-29 , 8:53 am

Money is serious business.

While receiving ang baos is one of the best aspects of Chinese New Year, I’m sure most of us wouldn’t play with money.

However, this influencer decided to play a game where he asked for ang baos online via his Instagram story and promised to give the highest ang bao giver 20% more than what they had initially given. 

This resulted in the influencer getting slammed for his actions, especially after one of his followers gave him an ang bao containing $2,000.

Here’s what happened.

The Game

The influencer, Nicholas Teo, posted an Instagram story describing his game.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

If you gave him an ang bao via paylah and it was the highest ang bao after 24 hours, Teo would transfer back the money with about 20% more than what you initially gave.

He added a disclaimer that he couldn’t promise to give back 20% extra if the amount was too large, but he promised to transfer back a fair amount.

In third place was an ang bao worth $20.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

In second place was an ang bao containing $2,000.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

The winner of his game sent in $2,888.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

True to his word, Teo transferred $3,466 back to the winner.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

The Problem

However, the person who won second place was unsatisfied with the outcome. 

She posted on her own Instagram story that the winner played with $2,888.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

However, she realised that the paylah transfer limit is only $2,000 and that the story with the rules of the game explicitly stated paylah.


When she messaged Teo, he mentioned that paynow was also possible. However, he didn’t post a follow-up story to clarify.

Thus, though she thanked Teo for hosting the game and taking the time to reply to her messages, she felt that the game was unfair as he did not explicitly mention that paynow was allowed.

Teo’s Response

Teo reposted the fan’s story in response and decided to take his game further.

He presented both sides of the story and offered the fan a deal.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He wrote, “I have offered her a solution to choose a poll where she will either get $2400 (her supposed winnings), $2000 (her capital), $1000 (half for goodwill) or $0 (cause she lost).”


He mentioned that he offered to do it using Instagram’s slider feature so that no matter what, the fan would get some money.

However, she chose to do a poll instead. 

In his side of the story, Teo stated that he only started this game in the name of CNY fun and didn’t expect people to give more than $20.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He said he was fully prepared to uphold his end of the bargain to the best of his ability and felt terrible that someone lost $2,000 because of him.

However, he said, “After talking to her, I realised this was to her, a quick greedy cash grab lol. Also the way she approached me was with a lil sob story and like after telling me her mentality behind giving me the money, I didn’t feel like giving it back.”

He explained, “She thought it was a sure win to take advantage of, and she was going to give as much as she could to get as much as she could.”


“As I always say, gamble with what you can lose, not what you want to win. She clearly is not in that mindset. Also she chose the poll option over the slider option which guaranteed her money which makes me think wah f*** you really just want all the money.”

He then proceeded to justify his rules in the following story.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He ended off with a quote, “Fortune favours the brave but greed eats the weak. Play responsibly friends.”

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)


Though the Instagram stories have expired, a Reddit user uploaded screenshots of the saga on r/SingaporeRaw.

Netizens were unhappy with Teo’s response.


The consensus was that Teo was wrong for neglecting to clarify his rules properly.

Image: Reddit.com (r/SingaporeRaw)

Some suspect that he may have gotten his friend to pay him a larger sum of money than the fan.

Image: Reddit.com (r/SingaporeRaw)

Many called Teo out for acting self-righteous when he was in the wrong.

Image: Reddit.com (r/SingaporeRaw)

Furthermore, they were upset that he put all the blame on the fan.


Shortly after the Reddit post was posted, Teo posted an Instagram story stating that the winner of the game had given him an ang bao containing $888.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

Pointing to the fact that the person who transferred the $888 ang bao to him had a phone number rather than a name shown, Teo used this as evidence that he did not know the winner.

The poll’s winner was the $2,000 option, meaning Teo would transfer the fan’s money back.

However, 595 people voted for Teo to keep the money and not transfer anything back to the fan.


This prompted Teo to start a new game for those who “understand what a game really is”.

The New Game

Teo screenshotted all 595 names and announced a new game.

A random wheel would select one of these 595 names, and that winner would get $577.77, the amount Teo was supposed to lose.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He returned $20 to the person who came in third place.

He also made it known that he had seen the viral Reddit post.

He said, “Heard on Reddit that people say I am a scammer. They truly don’t know me and they haven’t been following along that I truly don’t care about money.”

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He transferred $2,000 back to the fan. 

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He wrote, “I say I paylah this number but I use paynow you think she care? Probably not. Told you it’s interchangeable.”

He asked his followers in another poll if they thought that paylah and paynow were interchangeable terms. 

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

Currently, 51% of voters believe that the terms aren’t interchangeable.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

Lessons Learnt

Teo wrote an Instagram story detailing his lessons from this experience.

Image: Instagram (@hargaohunk)

He also stated that the game had two losers, including him.

He urged his followers not to gamble if they couldn’t handle losing. 

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Who is Nicholas Teo?

Teo is a Singaporean influencer who has amassed over 17.2k followers on Instagram.

He also posts TikTok videos.

He is known for his appearances on the Wah!Banana YouTube channel, where he works as an actor and writer.

Can Teo be Charged?

Some netizens in the Reddit post believe that Teo can be charged for his actions.

Image: Reddit.com (r/SingaporeRaw)

Specifically, they believe he can be charged under the Gambling Control Act.

Image: Reddit.com (r/SingaporeRaw)

Under the Act, “betting” means “making or accepting a bet, involving payment of any money or money equivalent or anything else of value on the outcome of a race, sporting event or any other event or process, taking place in Singapore or elsewhere.”

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Featured Image: Twitch & Instagram (@hargaohunk)