THE continued improvement in the Cebuano consumer’s purchasing power has prompted organizers of Manila’s Off Price Show to continue to hold events in Cebu.
Diana Bernadez, marketing manager at Startrends Apparel Corp., said Cebu remains an important market because of its rising spending power and growing sophistication.
“Cebu is the next big market after Manila. And we are happy to note that although a number of foreign brands are already here, Cebuanos still go to sale expos and purchase items,” said Bernadez.
The Cebu Sale Expo organized by the Off Price Show is the first in Cebu. Unlike the Off Price Show, which carries authentic international brands of clothing at discounted prices, the Cebu Sale Expo carries both homegrown and international brands.
Twenty-two tenants attended the three-day Cebu Sale Expo at the Cebu Trade Hall of SM City Cebu, which opened last Friday.
Last year, the Off Price Show in Cebu generated P4 million in sales. This year, Bernadez said, they hope to exceed last year’s figure and achieve P5 million in sales.
In a year, the Off Price Show holds at least nine events, mostly in Manila. It is touted as one of the country’s biggest sale expo events. Bernadez said an event held at the World Trade Center last year raked P12 million in sales.
“The Off Price Show aims to boost brand recall and awareness among consumers. This is one of the sales events anticipated by a lot of Filipinos because of the diverse products we offer at a discounted price,” she said, adding that the branded clothing products they sell are sourced overseas.
The Philippine Retailers Association reported that the retail sector has the potential to grow its contribution to the country’s total economic output to 20 percent in 10 years from last year’s 13 percent, as the business process outsourcing industry continues to expand and consumer spending rises.
The Department of Trade and Industry, likewise, noted that increasing gross domestic product (GDP) per capita of the country is also seen to benefit the retail sector. The country’s GDP per capita reached the $3,000 level as of the end of last year.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 19, 2015.
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