The Prince Warehouse Club (PWC) has developed a huge network of sari-sari stores — small, retail businesses owned by micro-entrepreneurs in urban poor communities and middle class subdivisions — in Metro Cebu. These stores serve as links from big suppliers and the wholesalers to the end consumers.
Sari-sari in the vernacular means ‘variety’ and these small retail outlets sell canned goods and Instant noodle packs along with non-food items like detergent powder, shampoo and toothpaste in sachets. Serving as a wholesaler of these items from suppliers and manufacturers, the Prince Warehouse Club has become a favorite source by these community variety stores because of the competitive prices.
PWC owner Robert Go noted that over 2,000 sari-sari store operators and owners now regularly shop to replenish their store inventories at the different PWC supermarkets in Metro Cebu.
Go, however, observed that price is not the only reason for the rise and fall of these small entrepreneurs. Though not lacking in guts and long hours of hard work to make their stores earn them a decent living, many fall short because they did not have the basic skills in accounting and management.
Over eight years ago, it dawned on him that he needed to help these stores grow. Hence, the PWC began organizing the annual Sari-Store Festival where the small store operators gather to learn financial literacy skills from experts and fellow store owners who succeeded in growing their own businesses.
Moreover, PWC suppliers display their products at a much cheaper prices. Thus, the store owners look forward to the annual festivals to buy more stocks than they used to.
Store owners will however be in for a pleasant surprise during the 8th Sari-Sari Store Festival this coming July 20, 2013 at the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) as the annual event levels up to the Information Age.
Watch out for more announcements to come.
Sari-sari stores fuel growth of retail sector (The Freeman)
What they wrote about last year’s festival