The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed many aspects of life and impacted numerous businesses all over the world. As everyone adjusts to the new normal, businesses that manage to survive are those that are quick to pivot and identify concepts that help them adapt to the environment. For two Solane LPG dealers, consistency is the key to sustain a business badly hit by the global health and financial crisis.
“The pandemic happened so suddenly that it caught us by surprise,” shared Warren Yap, owner of Wrenley’s Appliance Plaza. “For our LPG business, what was greatly affected during lockdown was the commercial segment because most of the hotels and restaurants we supply to in Bohol were all closed.” The company currently has 30 employees and distributes to all 47 towns in Bohol City.
Facing the same predicament is Dexter Ho, president and general manager of Rejoice Consumer Source: “The pandemic and lockdown affected our business due to the temporary closure of several businesses such as restaurants, big and small eateries, and hotels. The community quarantine only allowed minimal movement.” Rejoice Consumer Source currently has a staff of 10 with a total of 2 branches in Bukidnon.
But even as the commercial segment continues to be affected in the community quarantine, both business owners admit that their domestic market is thriving with many of their customers opting to cook their own meals at home.
To maximize this, Warren made sure to make their services easily available to their customers: “Since our product is considered a commodity, we made sure to have ample supply. We also opened more channels and outlets.” Meanwhile, Dexter had to reconfigure the company’s processes and transactions, sharing, “We had to make adjustments to lessen the impact of the lockdown and pandemic to fit the new normal when the ECQ is lifted.”
Both owners also recognized Solane’s unwavering support amid the crisis with the leading LPG company providing financial assistance, PPEs, alcohol and rice subsidies to the personnel of both companies. “Solane’s financial support boosted the morale of our employees. They felt they were cared for,” shared Dexter. Meanwhile, on the business side, Warren said, “Solane showed great support to our company by ensuring that our workforce and our finances are both healthy.”
As the country transitions to the new normal, Rejoice Consumer Source and Wrenley’s Appliance Plaza remain open to making adjustments to the company strategies amid the pandemic. “In the showroom, we have adapted strict health standards and safety protocols,” shares Warren. “In terms of sales, we’ve increased our buffer stocks so we’re prepared for situations like this. We’re also upgrading our homedelivery by adding more motorcycles to our fleet.” This, he emphasized, is to ensure that when customers call, they will consistently deliver.
Dexter and his team are doing the same. “The new normal needs a little adjustment in the way we did our operations before, but consistency is the key. We follow the protocols until they become a habit, we make sure we have enough product inventory and that their Solane LPG is delivered to customers on time.”
Dexter and Warren agree the pandemic is far from over but both are thankful that, with the help of their employees and the support of a partner like Solane, they were able to quickly adapt, tap another market opportunity and find ways to consistently deliver the needs of their customers.