MANILA — An official on Wednesday said the Duty Free Philippines Corporation (DFPC) has reached USD217 million in its 2018 total consolidated sales, a 2 percent increase from USD213 million in 2017.
“One of the factors that contributed to this growth is our partnerships with third-party online payment solutions such as AliPay and WeChat,” DFPC chief operating officer Vicente Angala said in a speech.
Filipino tourists and overseas Filipino workers remain as Duty Free Philippines’ top source market with USD59.9 million-worth of transactions followed by the Americans with USD4.9 million and the Chinese with USD1.5 million.
For 2019, Angala is “optimistic” the DFPC will achieve its targeted USD220 million in sales with the full use of its online store launched last year.
“With these WeChat, AliPay, and online (store) we are very optimistic we will meet those targets,” he told reporters in an interview.
The state-owned corporation launched its online shopping store dutyfreephilippines.ph and started accepting payment via Chinese mobile payment applications WeChat and Alipay in 2018.
While growth marked DFPC’s 2018, Angala admitted it failed to meet its initial USD225 million target due to “some challenges” and delays. The launch of three new Duty Free Philippines stores, supposed to open in 2017, was postponed to 2018.
With the emergence of membership shopping in the Philippines, Angala added the DFPC’s sales on grocery items were also affected.
“Our sales on grocery (items) were affected but what we did was to change the portfolio. S&R is more focused on American brands, but we expanded our offers to US and European brands to have more assortments,” he said.