Local Success Story Demonstrates Economy’s Growth Potential
SM Investments Corporation demonstrates the potential of the Filipino private sector. Founded over 50 years ago, the family-owned enterprise has grown from a small shoe store into a conglomerate with a wide range of commercial and retail ventures, including the iconic Mall of Asia in Manila. Tessie Sy-Coson, Vice Chairperson and daughter of founder Henry Sy, explains that the secrets of SM Investments’ success are its strategy of reinvesting in the business and its focus on satisfying customers. She says, “It’s not rocket science. We basically try to serve as many people as we can.”
The corporation is now involved in all kinds of ventures, from banking to hotel management, tourism services and retail developments. One current project is to build a new mall just outside Cebu. Ms. Sy-Coson explains, “Malls serve as a catalyst for business activities. We employ the right people, pay the right taxes, and other people follow. Now, more than ever, we know which directions we should go to serve local communities.”
Commitment to corporate social responsibility
Strongly committed to the people of the Philippines, SM Investments launched SM Foundation to handle corporate-social-responsibility initiatives. The foundation helps build schools, provides scholarships, offers support for local farmers and delivers a range of services, from medicines to books, through its mall-outreach programs. Ms. Sy-Coson says, “If members of the local community do not come to us, we will go to them. We aim to serve as community centers in order to do the most we can for our country and for the Filipino economy.”
Now SM Investments is expanding internationally. The corporation plans to open five malls in different cities in China while pursuing its steady growth in the Philippines. SM Investments will continue to serve as an example of the Philippines’ exceptional investment potential.