This is part I of a two-part post that appears on NextBillion today. I will post part II tomorrow.
If you’ve ever been to the Philippines, you’ve no doubt seen a row of identical tiny stores selling Coca-Cola and laundry detergent. In fact, there are about 630,000 of these sari-sari storesserving the 90 million Filipinos across the country (a little less than one per 100 people), and each one may record less than $10 per day in sales. Each store sells the same single-use household and food products, but buys its inventory from grocery stores in the cities. As a result, the BoP end up paying even more for products and services.
Mark Ruiz and Bam Aquino of MicroVentures recognized the opportunity to consolidate this supply chain by centralizing sourcing and reducing distribution inefficiencies. The result isHapinoy, a franchise that has reached nearly 10,000 sari-sari stores in a few short years.
Hapinoy is an example of a conversion franchising model, which “transforms pre-existing, independently-owned businesses into members of a standardized network.” The company manages its operations and negotiates supplier contracts with Nestle, Unilever and others from its headquarters in the capital city of Manila. Products are purchased in bulk and distributed via Hapidelivery to a network of community stores, each of which serves between 50 and 100 “suki” stores (Hapinoy sari-sari stores). The suki stores buy from the community store at a lower cost and sell at a higher margin.