Training for mom and pop stores to build better business

In a nutshell

Helping mom and pop stores grow sustainably through professional sales and merchandising training.

What’s the issue?

Across the Philippines, more than 90 percent of all retail outlets are small, “mom and pop” style stores at the heart of local communities, often in hard-to-reach villages. Operating independently is hugely positive for individual traders, but as they’re not part of a group or chain, they don’t benefit from corporate training or development. This means that their trading and merchandising practices are often neither up-to-date nor informed by latest thinking.

What’s the story?

Unilever provides a livelihood training programme to the owners of mom and pop stores across the Philippines through a programme called Kabisig, which translates as “partner” or “linked arms”. This underlines the collaborative nature of the programme, designed to help small shopkeepers in the country modernise their operation. In essence, the training helps them perform with the same standards of professionalism as much bigger operations.

The Kabisig summit events are called “Negosyo Mo, Kinabukasan Mo” (Your Business, Your Future). Three main topics are covered: (i) cashflow and inventory management, (ii) assortment and merchandising, and (iii) customer service. The training is not brand specific, and it benefits all Unilever brands sold by the participating traders – from Dove and Sunsilk to Close Up and Breeze. The learnings enable them to run better, more profitable, more efficient businesses.

What are the outcomes and impact?

By the end of 2016, the Unilever Philippines team had achieved:

    • 909 Kabisig summits completed
    • Over 41,000 Kabisig members trained
    • Improved the livelihood of 646 super store owners and the business of 402 super stores
    • Contributed significantly to Gross Sales Value
    • Almost 37,000 women given the opportunity to improve their livelihoods
    • An impressive 38% growth by the stores who took part in the Kabisig summits
    • Enhanced the livelihood of 25,856 Kabisig members
    • Empowered 23,270 Women
    • Improved the lives of 129,280 Filipinos
    • Unilever’s core of the core brands are growing by 45% in the stores that have undergone Kabisig Summit training

What are the future plans?

Unilever is committed in improving the livelihoods of thousands of Filipinos, especially women. Kabisig is now an established part of our strategy for market development. Because of the clear financial returns on investment delivered by the programme, the ambition is to roll it out across the country and – indeed – across the region.

In Summary

Jacque Jimenez, Perfect Community Operations Manager at Unilever Philippines, says: “I’m proud that a big business like Unilever can help small businesses like the mom and pop stores and treat them as partners for growth. This is true to our inclusive business model and principles.”

Share story

Use this form to share the story with a colleague by e-mail.

Share story 2

Use this form to share the story with a colleague by e-mail.