Young tycoon Edgar Sia enters grocery business
MANILA, Philippines — Young tycoon Edgar Injap Sia II has entered the competitive grocery business under a new brand “Merrymart,” with an ambitious goal of building a nationwide network of 1,200 stores with P120 billion system-wide sales by 2030.
The first Merrymart grocery store was inaugurated on Monday afternoon at the ground floor of DoubleDragon Plaza in DD Meridian Park Bay Area.
Sia, chair of MerryMart Grocery Centers Inc., said: “This is going back to our basics. My grandfather started his grocery store in the 1950s in our hometown. My parents as well opened their own grocery business way back in 1989 and have been operating successfully for 30 years and counting. This background gives our family extensive experience in the retail business.”
The expansion will be supported by a strategy to open this business to franchising.
The new business will be outside of – but in synergy with – the property business under DoubleDragon Properties Corp.
“We would like to take advantage of our group’s knowhow in franchising, and our familiarity of the Philippine market terrain, just like in the rollout of Mang Inasal, CityMall, Hotel101 and CentralHub network. We believe this step will further strengthen the market grip of all the industries that our group is involved in,” Sia said.
Merrymart aims to serve as a platform for the existing local and traditional groceries to “convert and be part of a modern branded retail chain network while retaining ownership of the store as a franchisee.” The pitch is for the smaller and fragmented grocery operators to “future-proof themselves and keep them relevant for the next many decades and also enable them to bridge the ongoing shift from traditional retail to modern retail.” This shift is seen inevitable when a developing country evolves to eventually become a first world country.
“Our family initially had no plans to expand the grocery business, but our recent experiences made us realize the need for us to be in the modern grocery retail business. Moreover there are undeniable synergies between the real estate and retail businesses, and in our case, gladly the grocery retail have always been in our blood,” Sia said.
His group expects to set up several MerryMart warehouses and distribution centers to support the MerryMart retail shops around the country and intends to locate these in DoubleDragon’s CentralHub warehouse complexes.
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