SRML16th Business and Franchise Expo
DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez during the 16th Business and Franchise Expo of the Association of Filipino Franchisers Inc. (AFFI)

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez encouraged franchisers to be innovative and creative in their businesses during the 16th Business and Franchise Expo of the Association of Filipino Franchisers Inc. (AFFI) on 29 September.

“Through innovation and creativity, we are confident to see more local franchisers expand across the country’s borders”, said Secretary Lopez.

The franchising industry accelerated by 20% in 2016 from Php16B total sales registered in 2015 and is expected to sustain the expansion in the next two years.

Meanwhile, the trade chief recognized the role of franchising as a tool in economic development and nation-building, particularly the opportunities it provides to the micro, small, and medium, enterprises (MSMEs).

Secretary Lopez further shared that apart from the increasing number of large Filipino firms expanding in ASEAN, household-based micro-enterprises have now the capacity to penetrate the ASEAN market through the programs of the government.

The trade chief highlighted that the government continues to place the MSMEs at the front and centre of trade agenda and at the forefront of regional development to enable those at the bottom of the pyramid, achieve inclusive growth and shared prosperity for all.

He also cited DTI’s efforts to empower and provide opportunities to MSMEs through its 7Ms Framework (Mindset, Mastery, Mentoring, Money, Machine, Market Access, and Models).

Among the ASEAN Member States, the Philippines currently has 1,500 franchises where 65% are Philippine brands. Moreover, there are 140,000 franchise outlets with the Philippine franchise sector generating more than a million jobs.

Secretary Lopez encouraged the members of AFFI to be entrepreneurs for others and be part of the continuing growth story of the franchising sector and Philippine economy.

“We are driven to empower local entrepreneurs and we will continue to work to meet the challenges of the market,“ Sec. Lopez said.

Vice President Leni Robredo, Senator Cynthia Villar, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, and Go Negosyo Advisor Meryl Cruz were also present during the event.♦