Business competition heating up – Philippines

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As the apartment is heading into its final stages of completing we started concentrating on our businesses that need development. We started selling ice pops out of the internet snacks and now our neighbours are also starting to sell frozen drinks. Not a major problem but just a show of how quickly people adapt to ideas that work. We are also experiencing some competition from our main competitor internet cafe who is operating on the main road. Offering free swimming for so many hours. Good promo or are things getting desperate? only time will tell but from what feedback I got from one of the 7 (yes 7) netcafes in Upper Calajo-an the one on the main road is also asking the kids where they go to play on the internet and sending people to look at peoples setups. Now that doesn’t sound like a confident business but then again we also looked at the same unit they are in and decided it was cheaper long-term to build a building rather than pay the high rent as most of profit margin is wiped out by the cost of the location. You maybe thinking location location location.. well in most cases you could be right but the unit is too small compared to ours. Ok we don’t have the fastest internet or PC’s but we are the cheapest and can function on a lot less than the main competition because we have no debt or high rent. All in all we are here to stay and with the snacks and Sari-Sari expanding soon the business will remain viable and profitable.

I have been told by a lot of expats that its not viable to compete with Filipinos but like I say a lot its all about not NEEDING the business income at least initially. This will allow it to grow by itself the competition is irrelevant as simply they start trying to beat you and and offer crazy promo’s etc. but your here for the long haul just setup and let things develop around you. Customer service is something that is important and a lot of places lack. Prime example was Nutech my wife called ahead for items I needed and they said they had them all in stock. I arrive they have one out of the four and I ask when are they getting the next stock of the items “maybe a week or two”. Not I will call you as soon as I am aware sir.. not I will call and find out now sir.. just something I hear very often lately a very “I cant be bothered to find out sir”. Which is what they really meant. Doesn’t annoy me the way it used to simply because it happens so much you get used to it. But at the same time I am thankful because if I can provide that service that people will be surprised to receive because of not being used to it instantly going to win customers.

As you can see the apartment is coming along well and im looking forward to getting the next 3 projects out the way so we can do the Aquaponics and also an incubator due to Pap’s chickens laying eggs constantly. So those of you thinking I have it easy when I come home to the Philippines think again.. I have had probably a month of 1am finishes at the netcafe including a few 4-6am finishes, a bit of stress with the budgets on the apartments and cutting out some bad debt from another business. Not the life of someone who wants to sit still but anyone who knows me will pretty  much tell you its the way I like things to be… busy and constantly progressing.