BIZ BUZZ: A troubled food venture?
A few years back, a promising food venture burst into the local food scene with a fresh look and promising business model that naturally attracted a strong following.
Recently, however, disgruntled franchisees have come to call the entity a “Vanishing Value Initiative” due to a series of ventures that didn’t quite live up to the hype. Many outlets are allegedly struggling to stay afloat amid dwindling sales.
Franchisees of the firm’s flagship yogurt brand lead the chorus of discontent. They are reportedly raising red flags over what they perceive as lack of support and diminishing marketing initiatives that were once the backbone of the brand’s success.
The frustration has allegedly reached the boiling point, culminating in a recent gathering where a collective decision was made to write a heartfelt letter to the company.
The concerned business partners urged management to breathe new life into their strategies and address mounting concerns that cast a dark cloud over the brand’s once stellar reputation.
The growing number of shuttered outlets stands as a silent testament to the brand’s struggles, with many fearing that this could be a sign of deeper financial trouble simmering beneath the surface. As more and more locations permanently shut down, the once bustling hubs are now turning into ghostly vacant spaces.
Adding fuel to the fire are rumors of inflated sales figures and overly optimistic projections shown to potential franchisees. Thus many newcomers feel deceived as they grapple with the harsh reality of declining sales and a barrage of customer complaints due to a noticeable dip in product quality.
Will this food company admit to a crisis and change its ways? Or will its charismatic CEO resort to “Just More Hype”?
— Daxim L. Lucas
SM Investments on a roll
Sy-led SM Investments Corp., one of the country’s largest conglomerates, is on an enviable roll, recently bagging major awards that show it can compete with the best in Southeast Asia.
During the recently concluded 13th Institutional Investor Corporate Awards by Alpha Southeast Asia magazine, SM Investments won its 12th award for Most Organized Investor Relations and eighth for strongest adherence to corporate governance, as validated by a poll of investors and analysts in the region.
SM Investments was also named one of the top companies with Best Senior Management IR Support and Best Strategic CSR (corporate social responsibility).
“We are grateful to Alpha Southeast Asia and industry investors for recognizing the company’s work in upholding the highest standards in investor relations and corporate governance,” said Frederic DyBuncio, SM Investments president and CEO.
The poll was conducted from January to June this year based on tallied votes among 586 investors and analysts with exposure to the Southeast Asia region, according to the Hong Kong-based investment magazine.
Also, SM Investments clinched the Best Environmental Excellence Award (Bronze) in the recently concluded 15th Global Corporate Social Responsibility & Environmental Social Governance Summit and Awards held at Da Nang, Vietnam.
SM Investments was recognized for its sustainability initiatives across the group.
These are consolidated under the SM Green Movement —a multi-year campaign that aims to make sustainability accessible to all by nurturing an ecosystem of stakeholders to live green in the easiest way possible.
This campaign covers the SM Group of companies including SM Investments, SM Supermalls, SM Store and SM Foundation. The initiatives of the Green Movement focus on water recycling, waste segregation, renewable energy, disaster resilience, preservation and conservation and building sustainable communities.