Beach babies, unite!

- Estela Banzon-De La Paz () - March 6, 2006 - 12:00am
Setting up a business need not cost millions or hundreds of thousands of pesos; all you need is a little creativity, a good product and marketing strategy.

Beachbaby Clothing Corp., a company making pure cotton beach pants or lounge pants was set up by two ladies who used to be dorm mates in UP in the mid-90s–Angelique "Nikki" Badelles and Nicole Serrano. Their starting capital was only P20,000 about five years ago.

The idea to make comfortable beach pants was initially drawn from their desire to give the public inexpensive but quality beach pants. "Before, it was very hard to look for beach pants that are not expensive – the only ones available were the branded ones like Roxy, Billabong or you have to go to all the way to Thailand to buy the Thai pants which are similar to the beach pants," Badelles said.

Serrano, who is in charge of production and design, was able to find suppliers of pure cotton and a tailor in Davao who could do exactly as she has designed for the beach pants. The quality and fit of their pants have pleased a lot of their clients.

This, according to Badelles, is because their beach pants can fit almost all body shapes from very skinny women to those on the heavier side.

Badelles, for her part, takes care of the finance and marketing. What is interesting about Beachbaby is that it has ventured into selling their items through the Internet. This marketing strategy not only saves them labor costs, it saves them rental expenses as well. Thus, they are able to sell their products at much lower prices. Beachbaby pants sell for P200 to P500 depending on the material and style. Their latest beach pants called seersucker sells for P500. The original beach pants, cropped or gaucho are still priced at P200. The tie bottom pants sell for P250.

Badelles said Internet marketing has proven to bring in the much needed sales all throughout the year even during the lean month of February. During the Christmas season, Nikki along with her partner Nicole Serrano joins bazaars to show their products. Last year, they joined the bazaar in Ayala Alabang and sales were brisk. Nikki noted, though, that their Internet sales were not to be outdone, fetching around 100 orders daily.

The idea to do Internet marketing actually came from partner Nicole, who is very much into computers. During one of the times she was surfing, she managed to get into the FemaleNetwork.com. This is where she posted their beach pants. Orders for their products then started coming in.

Aside from FemaleNetwork.com, Beachbaby pants can also be bought through their blog. "It’s very easy to buy from us, you don’t need a credit card," said Badelles.

She explained that all their clients have to do is to email them for their orders either thru Female Network.com or their blog. As soon as the orders are placed, Badelles informs them that orders will be coming in after a week. When the products arrive from Davao, Badelles emails their clients that the stocks are ready and payments should be made by depositing to their BPI account or through G Cash of Globe.

She noticed that for orders outside Metro Manila, the use of G Cash is preferred rather depositing directly to BPI. However, for Metro Manila clients, they deposit directly to Beachbaby’s account either through the ATM machine or via BPI phone banking.

After the payment has been made, Badelles will send the items through Air 21. So far, everything has been smooth and none of their clients have complained of any delays or damage to their products.

Truly, both ladies are very satisfied with the way their business have turned out and with summer just around the corner, Beachbaby is now preparing to get a lot of orders for their beach pants– long, cropped, tie- bottom or gaucho.
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