Five women-led MSMEs are ready to take charge of their businesses
Women entrepreneurs in the Philippines are a critical part of the country’s economic recovery. Through the years, the country has made major strides toward gender parity in entrepreneurship, paving the way for women to make a substantial contribution to the national economy.
SM Supermalls is committed to create a conducive environment for women entrepreneurs to thrive—enabling more womenpreneurs to grow and flourish.
Among these womenpreneurs is Juana Gabrielle Dumpit, owner of Baked Puff PH. Her first pop-up store was established in SM Aura in 2022 where her products were sold out for four days straight. Baked Puff PH was also among the first batch of the SM StartUp Program.
As a womanpreneur herself, Dumpit sought to empower others by enabling them and helping them refine their skills. “Our goodies are baked with love by our female bakers who joined us with no prior baking knowledge. But through time and training, they were able to learn our recipes and techniques. We also give them the chance to work on new flavors they want to launch for Baked Puff.”
Another advocate for women empowerment is the owner of handicrafts and bayong store BinibiniCo, Diannel Go. She joined the SM StartUp Program with the goal to “honor the declining culture of weaving in Laguna.” And with her hard work and patience, Diannel was offered an opportunity to be part of SM Santa Rosa as a short-term tenant.
“Our business tagline is ‘Gawang Pinay para sa Pinoy.’ It is important to recognize that behind all our products are hardworking binibini staff, artisans, and weavers. They are mostly elderly women struggling to find other work opportunities due to their age and gender, young moms hoping to make ends meet as they take on the role of being mothers and wives, and young Filipina working students looking for opportunities to earn and grow as young women,” Go mentioned.
She furthered that every day, BinibiniCo celebrates women with every bayong and handicraft made. “The store is pink to represent the strong and soft feminine energy of a woman.”
For Isla Kapsule owner and founder, Cherry Lim, SM Supermalls is close to their hearts. Aside from being the usual go-to mall, and working for SM e-plus project years ago, it then became home to ISLA’s humble beginnings. And being in the business for quite some time now, she hopes to become an inspiration for aspiring womenpreneurs.
“ISLA stands as an inspiration to never quit, #JustDoIt, even if no one supported you at a point in your life. We want to be known as a woman-led business that possesses strong courage, passion, and character that inspires fellow Pinays to do the same,” Lim said.
Her business, ISLA Kapsule, innovates the Philippine coffee experience through local coffee products. Being the first and only capsule and espresso bar in the Philippines, ISLA serves the best of the Philippines—coffee and beyond—and promotes agriculture and tourism in one brand.
Meanwhile, mompreneur Razel Ann Suy Tan, owner of Out of Nowhere Kitchen in SM Lanang Premier, strongly believes that women can always be what they want to be.
“We are all equal, regardless of our gender. As womenpreneurs, we must always challenge ourselves beyond our limits. We can always achieve our dreams with innovation, passion, love, and hard work,” she added.
Sharing stories of her challenges, Tan said that SM helped her learn and grow as an entrepreneur. “I was confronted with challenges to go beyond what I dreamed of. But this also showed me that while these instances can happen, success is sweeter when we’re able to overcome these difficulties.”
For Macky Demafeliz and Bea Rosete, women are best represented by flowers. “It is delicate yet strong, breathtaking in its beauty and resilient season after season. A flower arrangement is the best gesture to show appreciation for every woman this Women’s Month,” said the mother-and-daughter tandem of Davao-based Carlins Flowershop.
Believing in the beauty and power of flowers, Macky and Bea joined SM City Davao as one of their MSME tenants in 2018. During the pandemic, they went online but realized that the business of flowers is such that they’re gifted for everyday occasions as well as special days. The mall, with customers who see the flower arrangements and decide on the spot to purchase these—even if it’s a simple-stem rose, to tabletop blooms—is the perfect place to restart after the pandemic.
These five women-led MSMEs at SM Supermalls prove that nothing is stronger than the heart of a woman. The challenges brought by the pandemic and their circumstances are nothing compared to their will to grow, thrive, and succeed in the business arena.
Support them, along with other MSMEs, at the Womepreneur Market at an SM mall near you! Visit www.smsupermalls.com or follow @SMSupermalls on social media for all things women this Women’s Month.