AFFI projects 25% growth in sales
Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - September 18, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Association of Filipino Franchisers Inc. (AFFI) expects its sales to grow between 20-to-25 percent this year from a year ago, even as its member-firms’ losses due to the port congestion could potentially reach P15 billion if the issue is not addressed.

AFFI chairman Armando Bartolome said in a press conference yesterday the group is projecting its sales would rise from 20-to 25-percent this year from the P63.4 billion in 2013.

 “We are very optimistic. Our members have been getting a lot of queries from overseas Filipinos and retirees looking for a business,” he said.

While the group expects to post higher sales this year, challenges remain such as the congestion at Manila’s ports.

Bartolome noted that the AFFI members’ losses due to the port congestion have reached P3 billion since the truck ban was imposed in the City of Manila in February.

 “It is a relief that Erap removed the truck ban. It is really hitting us entrepreneurs,” he said citing delays in deliveries of materials and equipment used for their products and services.

He said that if the port congestion issue remains unresolved, the group’s potential losses could reach P10-to P15-billion by next year.

 “We are hopeful the problem will be over by the first quarter,” he said.

Aside from the congestion at Manila’s ports affecting operations, another challenge faced by AFFI members is the expected entry of more international brands to the country with the creation of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Economic Community (AEC)  by the end of 2015.

The AEC aims to create a single market and production base for member states to promote free movement of goods, services, investment and skilled labor across the region.

With more international brands seen coming to the country, Bartolome said Filipino franchisers need to be more innovative in their offerings.

Ricardo Cuna who serves as chairman of the 2014 Filipino Franchise Show said Filipino franchisers need to consider expanding to overseas markets to become competitive.

 “We will not only allow foreign brands to come here. We also want our brands to be present in other countries,” he said.

Bartolome said as part of promoting the growth of local franchisers with the upcoming AEC, the AFFI is looking at forging alliances with franchise organizations in other countries, as well as sharing of best practices during the 2014 Filipino Franchise Show to be held from Oct. 3 to 5 at the World Trade Center in Pasay City.

The AFFI groups Filipino businesses which recognize the competitive potential of the local franchising industry in the global market.

At present, the AFFI has 118 members, with 57 percent engaged in the food business and the balance in non-food products and services.

AFFI ARMANDO BARTOLOME ASSOCIATION OF FILIPINO FRANCHISERS INC ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS BARTOLOME CITY OF MANILA ECONOMIC COMMUNITY FILIPINO FRANCHISE SHOW PASAY CITY RICARDO CUNA
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