In a country like the Philippines, actions taken by one wealthy man say a lot about the economy. With businessman and former senator Manuel B. Villar Jr. expanding his real estate and retail portfolio by establishing MBV Retail Holdings with a P1B capital, the consumption-driven Philippine economy must really be on the rise.

      Under his new company, Villar plans to launch three new brands: All Day, a convenience store; All Home, a home appliance and furnishings outlet; and All Group, a department store business. It is quite timely for Villar to go into retail because in other recent news, many food things are heard about the Filipino consumer. The Nielsen Global Survey Consumer Confidence Index ranked the Philippines as the second most confident and optimistic consumer in the world (with 121 points, next only to Indonesia with 124 points). Stuart Jamieson, managing director of Nielsen Philippines, said that a “growing number of consumers are entering the middle class driving the positive outlook”. In relation to this, the World Bank said that the 6.2% growth in private consumption could be attributed to OFW remittances and increased employment in the BPO industry.

     In the market of convenience stores, however, MBV’s All Day chain (a rebranding of the Finds convenience store which currently has 80 outlets nationwide) faces a lot of competition. There is the Ministop chain from Japan, and the Philippine Seven Corporation which runs the 7-eleven stores in the Philippines. Even though consumption trends favour convenience stores because of the instant and ready-to-eat phenomena, there are also other entrants to the market like the foreign chain Family Mart, brought in to the Philippines by the Ayala group and Rustan’s group.

(Taken from Rappler.com, September 22, 2013 Issue)

by: Emilio Antonio | Marcella Karaan | Julian Martinez | Ivy Zuniga

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