Leon Lee of Stark Development Redefining Malaysia’s Property Scene

In a conversation with The Peak, he shares his belief in providing excellence, innovation, and leadership to positively impact the broader community and industry.
Leon Lee Hennessy

Leon Lee for Hennessy Greatness is an Odyssey

There are many visionary entrepreneurs in the world of real estate, yet Leon Lee truly stands out in the industry, inspiring and redefining the boundaries of modern property development in Malaysia. Recognised as one of the most exceptional entrepreneurs and business leaders by Hennessy X.O, Leon Lee, the Managing Director of Stark Development, hosted the final edition of Hennessy X.O’s Greatness is an Odyssey event at The St. Regis Kuala Lumpur.

Leon, who is also the founder of Zeon Properties Group, is someone who believes in providing strategic insight in what he does. His impressive portfolio features transformative projects such as the Fisherman’s Wharf Penang, Maritime Automall, and Nanyang Cottage, among others. Each of these developments has not only helped to shape, but also to revitalise the urban landscape, setting new benchmarks in design and functionality and in return, boosting community impact.

Here, he talks about his aspirations to pioneer sustainability in property development and the profound connection with Hennessy X.O that continues to shape his entrepreneurial journey.

Hennessy X.O

Hennessy is regarded as a symbol of success and leadership. What are the values you share with Hennessy?

Hennessy’s commitment to excellence is a standard that I uphold in my work. Just as Hennessy meticulously crafts its cognac through a blend of tradition and precision, I strive to deliver high quality results by paying attention to detail and continuously honing my skills.

Excellence, to me, means surpassing expectations consistently, and not just achieving success.

As for leadership, it involves inspiring and empowering others, making thoughtful decisions, and serving as a role model in both professional and personal capacities. Just as Hennessy leads in its industry, I aim to lead by example, guiding teams with a clear vision, empathy, and a commitment to collective success.

Green concepts and the use of sustainable materials are integral to your work. Could you provide examples of how these principles are incorporated into Stark Development?

At Stark, our commitment to sustainability and smart technology permeates every aspect of our development. We prioritise green concepts and the use of sustainable materials to ensure our projects are environmentally responsible and future-ready.

In our latest development, for instance, we’ve implemented energy-efficient building designs that harness natural light and ventilation to reduce energy consumption. Additionally, we employ eco-friendly construction materials like recycled steel and sustainable timber, which help to minimise our carbon footprint.

Our vision of crafting green, smart futures is a guiding principle that shapes our innovation and development strategies. Through the integration of sustainability and smart technology, we aspire to create communities that are not only livable today but also resilient for future generations.

Leon Lee Hennessy

Leon delivered a speech at the Hennessy Greatness is an Odyssey event at The St. Regis Kuala Lumpur.

What are the most important qualities of a successful business leader?

I believe successful business leaders embody several key qualities that propel their organisations forward. Firstly, effective communication is paramount. Leaders must clearly articulate their vision, values, and expectations to inspire and align their team. This is especially true in a dynamic environment like Hennessy, where collaboration and clear direction uphold our esteemed brand and innovative edge.

Secondly, adaptability is another critical quality. The business landscape is ever-changing, demanding leaders who can pivot and embrace change. Lastly, empathy is vital for successful leadership. Understanding and valuing team members’ perspectives and needs foster a positive and inclusive work culture.

From its inception in Penang to becoming a nationwide leader in the property sector, what are some of the career milestones you are most proud of overseeing the company’s growth? 

One of the most significant milestones in my career was the inception of our real estate agency in Penang with just 10 dedicated agents. Through strategic planning, a relentless commitment to excellence, and fostering a culture of innovation, we expanded our team to over 1,000 agents across Malaysia.

I’m particularly proud of how we transformed from a modest agency into a prominent developer. The success of our first major project was a pivotal moment, showcasing our capability to deliver high-quality, sustainable developments.

Additionally, seeing our company’s vision of “crafting green smart futures” come to life in our projects has been incredibly rewarding. It’s gratifying to witness how our developments not only provide exceptional living spaces but also contribute to a more sustainable and technologically advanced future.

Leon Lee Hennessy

Leon Lee for Hennessy Greatness is an Odyssey

How do you prefer to enjoy Hennessy X.O?

Personally, I prefer to enjoy my Hennessy X.O neat, with three ice cubes. This simple yet elegant approach allows me to fully appreciate the depth and character of Hennessy X.O, making every occasion feel a little more special.

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