Of new trends and markets
66-year-old firm sees opportunities in new trends, markets as it expands with new store – its 1st in 60 years
Fast-changing trends in the construction supply and materials sector and to get a bigger slice of the professionals in the construction industry have prompted some hardware and construction supply companies to adopt to these changes.
Charles Kenneth Co, Cebu Oversea Builders assistant president, said that these reasons had prompted their company to do their first expansion in 60 years.
“There are a lot of new products now that you cannot sell over the phone. Now, in order to sell products, we have to demonstrate it to our customers.
This is why we decided to branch out,” said Co, during the opening of their second branch along S. Osmeña Road at the North Reclamation Area in Cebu City.
Cebu Oversea Builders opened their first store in 1952 in Plaridel Street in downtown Cebu City.
In their first store, Co said they are focused on projects and direct wholesale buyers. So most of their transactions there are on paperworks and office work.
Aside from housing the showroom where their products are on display, their new branch at the NRA is also an avenue for the company to do presentations and demonstrations of the products they feature and sell.
Training on how to use their products can also be done in the area.
Their second outlet also houses their warehouse for their products for both of their branches. Their customers can also expect after-sales services as they also offer spare parts for the equipment and products they sell.
“Here, we are targeting the professionals so we have a partnership with different industry groups. It’s also our service for the industry. We target professionals not just those in large groups or corporations but also solo engineers or solo architects,” Co explained.
The newly opened Cebu Oversea Builders Centre houses several brands like Bosch, Husqvarna, Ridgid, Onduline, Yale, Zenoah, Universal Paint, Shera, Wacker Neuson, and USG Boral among others.
Their hardware construction and finishing material products include locks, building and construction supplies, cement, electrical system supplies, and corrugated asphalt roofing tiles. They also sell equipment like tractors, lawn mowers, electric drills, jigsaws, and electric planers, among others.
Proximity to port
According to Co, they also chose their new location based on its proximity to the port area.
He said they plan to also be able to ship their products to customers in neighboring provinces like Bohol, Leyte, and even in Mindanao.
Spacious parking area
Branch Manager Almira Ceniza said their new centre also has a spacious parking area that can accommodate more than 15 vehicles, something they did not have in their original branch.
She added that they have been on soft opening since November and have seen the good response from their customers.
Architect Armund Claro, president of the United Architects of the Philippines-Cebu City Chapter, said bigger showrooms could help professionals like them show their plans concretely to their clients.
“It’s a big help on our side. When we discuss materials with our clients, we can bring them to the showroom so they can see for themselves how the finished product would look like,” Claro said.
Apart from architects, Claro said this is also helpful for other professionals like electrical engineers and civil engineers.
Claro said that the bigger parking space would also be beneficial for them as they would not have any problems when visiting or looking for supplies.
The grand opening was held yesterday in time for their 66th anniversary.
Yesterday’s store opening was also attended by officials from several industry groups that included the Institute of Integrated Electrical Engineers of the Philippines-Cebu, Philippine Society of United Master Plumbers, Association of Structural Engineers of the Philippines, Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers, Philippine Society of Ventilating, Air Conditioning, & Refrigerating Engineers, Cebu Contractors’ Association, and the United Architects of the Philippines-Cebu City Chapter.
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