Bing Lee matriarch, Yenda Lee never imagined that the business she watched her late husband, Ken Lee establish and grow would continue in family hands after his passing.

More than 15 years on, that’s exactly what’s transpired. Lee is celebrating her 90th birthday this month, with Bing Lee holding two special sales to mark the occasion – the first was the Yenda 90 sale from May 23 to 26 and the second is the Yenda Financial Year sale now on until June 30.

“Ken always said that when he was gone the company would finish. It’s surprising that all of the family has not only joined the business, but stayed on,” she said.

Yenda with late husband, Ken Lee.

Their son, Lionel was appointed CEO after Ken passed away, with his four children all joining the company – Jasmine, Jordan, Joshua and Jesse.

While Yenda and Lionel are known to enjoy robust conversations, particularly during on-air radio commercials for Bing Lee, she feels immense joy at what he’s achieved.

“I’m so proud of Lionel for keeping the business going. He has worked so hard to keep pace with our competitors and steadily increase our presence from the four or five shops we had in the 1980s to now,” she said.

Bing Lee now has 36 stores across NSW, with online delivery available to NSW, the ACT, Victoria and Queensland.

Jordan Lee, Katja Miele, Dr Markus Miele, Yenda Lee, Lionel Lee, Jasmine Lee, Jesse Lee & Joshua Lee at the Miele Drummoyne store.

Yenda said the family has been approached about expanding across the country, but it went against her late husband’s philosophy of treating staff like they were an extension of the family.

“Ken always wanted to be able to drive to the stores, so he could get to know the teams and have that personal relationship with each of them,” she said.

This is a tradition Yenda has kept up over the years and at 90, she still regularly visits stores and attends events including the annual Bing Lee conference.

Yenda Lee at the Miele Drummoyne store, pictured with Narta chair, Kay Spencer (right).

Lionel’s eldest daughter, Jasmine, who also features in Bing Lee’s radio ads, said her dad is passionate about continuing her grandfather’s legacy. “He’s got a lot of pride in what Ken did and the way he went about business.”

Yenda believes it’s this small family business mentality that has ensured Bing Lee’s longevity through tough times, like the global financial crisis and current cost-of-living struggles. “It hasn’t changed a lot over the past 60 years. We’ve gone from five employees to more than 800, but it still feels like a family.”