SM Supermalls keeps doors open amidst pandemic, to launch more ‘smart cities’ and e-commerce channels


By: Retail Asia

When the Philippine government ordered the shutdown of malls except for essential services and asked workers to stay home in March 2020, SM Supermalls president Steven T. Tan knew he had a problem. The easy solution was to do nothing, but for Tan there were opportunities in this crisis. Perhaps nowhere else in Asia are shopping malls as important to the people as the Philippines, and with SM’s Mall of Asia being the largest, they are certainly super scaled.

In this interview, Tan shares how he and his team sprung into action: by repurposing laid off jeepney drivers to do deliveries, by establishing a 1 million Viber social community channel, by allowing customers to pick-up their orders curbside—all whilst working with tenants to keep commerce flowing and keeping all employees on the payroll even if they were ordered to stay at home.

From the start of the lockdown, SM already knew that the changes it had to take would not stop on corporate and tenant needs alone. Customers had to be up the priority list, whether they be from commercialized cities or in far-flung areas. SM focused on developing its omni-channel retail efforts in order to meet the new demands and needs of its customers.


Read full story HERE.