For the past more than 15 months, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to challenge businesses in all sorts of new ways.
While some have been doing well despite the circumstances and challenges. 7-Eleven, exclusively licensed by Philippine Seven Corporation (PSC) in the country, is one of those franchise businesses that have performed considerably well because of innovation.
Victor Paterno, PSC’s president and CEO, credits this to the continued trust customers and franchisees have in the company and the 7-Eleven brand. “Although we aren’t exempt from the challenges brought by the pandemic, we’re thankful for our customers’ continued trust. We hope to continue providing them with more and improved convenient one-stop shops, where they can pay bills, buy snack items, stock up on grocery items, and enjoy a cozy ambiance where they can relax,” he said.
An example of such an innovative store is the 7-Eleven x Heineken concept store launched recently. Located at Tomas Morato cor. Sct. Lozano in Quezon City, the concept store, in partnership with global beer brand Heineken, is the first-ever branded 7-Eleven concept store in the Philippines.
The idea for the store is adapted from Taiwan, where several 7-Eleven concept stores have partnered with various popular brands. In 2019, 7-Eleven Philippines representatives visited Taiwan, and they thought that a concept store would be well-received in the Philippines.
According to PSC’s COO and the mind behind the project, Yi-Jung Lee, “the plan for the 7-Eleven x Heineken store is for it to function as an alternative to a regular bar. In the store, customers can enjoy a selection of snacks and even stock up on essential grocery items while sneaking in some time to relax and enjoy Heineken drinks in a bar-like ambiance, all without feeling the need to dress up,” Lee said.
They soon got to work with the company’s Business Development Division to bring the first store to life.
When the pandemic began, two demographics emerged as the most stable for businesses: residents and professionals. The team chose Tomas Morato in Quezon City because it has the perfect mix of both.
The store’s design and construction were also crucial considerations. PSC wanted to deliver a unique and new 7-Eleven customer experience in the country. So, the design team fused Heineken’s distinctly international brand experience with 7-Eleven’s brand of convenience. The result is a branded industrial bar look and ambiance highlighting Heineken’s green tones inside and out. The two-story building also features a cozy-chic area on the second floor where customers can enjoy an ice-cold Heineken beer any time. The concept store provides the perfect balance of convenience and premium enjoyment.
“Through this concept store, we aim to provide our customers with a leveled up ‘7-Eleven experience.’ Customers can still go to the store to pay their bills, purchase a fulfilling rice meal, and buy grocery items, but they can also relax and enjoy the premium ambiance with a bottle of Heineken beer,” Lee said.
PSC revealed to FrontpagePH.com that the company is also planning and searching for the next 7-Eleven concept store locations, which will most likely be in one of the key cities outside Metro Manila.
Besides launching the concept store, PSC has reached a couple of business milestones in the past year. One is the launch of modular store structures in Meycauayan, Bulacan and Vito Cruz, Makati. These prefabricated and easy-to-assemble structures might soon be replicated in new 7-Eleven stores in other areas.
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