IHA Staff recently made a market visit to the Philippines in preparation for the planned November 2017 trade mission to that country. The visit included meeting with key importers and distributors, meeting with relevant key major chain retailers and touring multi-chain retailers and malls to better understand the market. The United States is among the Philippines’ top trading partners, and it traditionally has been the Philippines’ largest foreign investor.
Distributors visited include Home & Office, a family-owned distribution company that sells to many key retailers in the Philippines, as well as their sister company KLG International, which supplies the commercial/HoReCa market. Home & Office are also operators of the (gia award winning) retailer Gourdo’s, a homewares specialty chain. Gourdo’s has outlets in most major malls in Manila, including Mall of Asia, Mega Mall, Podium, SM Aura, Trinoma, Greenbelt, Glorietta, and Ayala Mall. IHA also met with Rustan’s Marketing Corporation (RMC), a leading nationwide distributor of various international prestige brands, which is part of the Rustan’s Group of Companies. RMC has a network of over 700 wholesale and retail outlets in key cities nationwide.
Retailers met with included Rustan’s Department Store, S&R Membership Shopping/Puregold, Ace Hardware, Robinson’s Department Store, Stores Specialists, and Mall of Kitchens. Rustan’s, a part of the Rustan’s Group of Companies, is the only upscale department store in Manila. They have 5 stores located in the Shangri-La Mall, Glorietta, Cebu, Gateway Mall and the Spanish suburb, and their primary customer is the traditional affluent. Their goal is to win in the housewares, electrics and bed/bath categories. Mall of Kitchens caters primarily to the chef and restaurant/hotel supply channel, providing high quality food and kitchen equipment & utensils.
Major sales channels and players in the Philippines market include:
Brick & Mortar:
- Department Stores – SM, Rustan’s, Robinson’s, Landmark, Isetann
- Hypermarkets – SM, Waltermart
- Supermarkets – SM, Puregold, Gaisano, Super 8 Grocery Warehouse
- Home Specialty Stores – Gourdo’s, True Home, Make Room & More, Ace Hardware, Landers, Mall of Kitchens
- Flagship/Road Shops – Crate & Barrel
IHA staff also met with the Philippine Retailers Association (PRA) to better understand how the PRA operates and discuss possible future cooperation. The PRA membership is comprised of the key retailers in the Philippines. The current Chairman of the PRA, Mr. Lorenzo C. Formosa, is also the current Chairman of the Federation of Asia-Pacific Retailers Association (FAPRA), which hold a biennial Asia-Pacific Retailers Convention & Exhibition (APRCE). APRCE 2017 will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from October 25-27.
IHA will be conducting a SE Asia Trade Mission to Indonesia and the Philippines in November 2017. Additional information about this opportunity can be found on IHA’s International Business Council website.