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Smart deploys community stores amid COVID-19 curbs

Richmond Mercurio (The Philippine Star) - April 8, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Smart Communications Inc. has deployed community-based stores as part of its continuing efforts to serve customers and retailers in areas affected by COVID-19 restrictions.

Smart said over 600 community lead stores are in place in Metro Manila to serve both customers and retailers.

More than two dozen rolling stores have also been deployed covering areas in Bulacan, Isabela, Cagayan, Tuguegarao, Quirino, Batangas, Cavite and Mindoro.

With the help of its regional distributors, customers can purchase Smart and TNT loads and WiFi devices from these rolling stores, while retailers can also top up their load wallets or purchase a retailer package.

Smart said some rolling stores also offer LTE smartphones and transact PLDT Home Fiber applications.

“It’s our commitment to ensure that Filipinos have access to our network and services during this time of need. If they cannot go to us, we will find a way to reach them in their communities,” said Alex Caeg, SVP and head of consumer sales group at PLDT and Smart.

“These rolling stores also help retailers keep their livelihood in this time of crisis. During the enhanced community quarantine, Smart distributors continued to support their retailers to ensure that they have a continuous inventory of telco loads and WiFi devices to serve their customers,” Smart first vice president and regional head for Luzon consumer sales John Palanca said.

Aside from these rolling stores, Smart said its customers could also access products and services through official online channels, as well as physical stores, temporary booths in malls, convenience stores and partner supermarkets.

Postpaid customers are encouraged to use the virtual booking platform for their sales and aftersales inquiries and transactions.

“We have put up these booths and online platforms in place to make sure that we remain accessible to our customers and are able to provide their needed assistance while keeping them and our employees safe amid the pandemic,” Smart president and CEO and PLDT chief revenue officer Alfredo Panlilio said.

Smart’s LTE network, the fastest mobile network in the Philippines according to third-party analytics firm Ookla, serves 96 percent of the population and is backed by parent company PLDT’s extensive fiber infrastructure in the country.

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