Franchise expo opens in SM
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Source: Sun Star By Jessica S. Losorata
THE 14th Cebu Franchise Expo opened yesterday in SM City Cebu Trade Hall with the participation of 50 companies nationwide. The expo will run until tomorrow.
The expo is organized by the Filipino International Franchise Association (FIFA) together with RK Franchise Consultancy (RKFC) and other local franchise players.
RKFC founder Rudolf Kotik said that unlike previous exhibits, which mostly had food-related businesses, this year’s event has a wide variety of traders, from convenience stores, laundry shops to entertainment and auto companies and even medical services.
“It’s now a supermarket of franchise opportunities,” Kotik said.
He said they expect 10,000 to visit the event but Kotik said the expo only serves as initial interaction between traders and prospective customers because the agreement is formalized after the event.
Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industries (CCCI) executive director Buddy Villasis said the event helps the chamber in its thrust to develop small and medium enterprises.
Kotik and Villasis said that because of its affordability, franchising is a good option for entrepreneurs, especially for those still starting out, and those with extra money but do not know where to invest.
They said a significant potion on franchising comes from overseas Filipino workers (OFW).
Kotik said the expo is opening the potential of new entrants like Dong Juan Global and 7-Eleven to connect with the market.
Philippine Seven Corp. (PSC) franchise PR specialist Nicole Angelica Villano said they joined the expo to boost their reach in Cebu and help the company’s target to open 40 additional stores this year. She said they have been getting many inquiries online on when they would be in Cebu for personal negotiations.
Villano said an entrepreneur needs at least P3.5 million as initial investment for a 120-square meter 7-Eleven store.
7-Eleven has 840 stores in the country, of which 25 are in Cebu. Of the 25, 22 are franchised and three are corporate outlets.
The PSC team at the fair is optimistic that the 7-Eleven franchise will trend in Cebu, with 25 stores opened last year when the chain officially launched here.
They said they are not worried about the growing competition in Cebu as they have already cornered the best sites such as university and call center belts.
World Connect Consultancy Services, Inc. (WCCSI), an immigration consultancy company from Legazpi, Albay, is another first-time participant of the expo. WCCSI is licensed to operate and cater specifically to Filipino students aspiring to study, work or migrate to the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia.