Capital

Injap’s ‘Light and Nimble’ MerryMart Soars as Big Businesses Stumble

A rookie in the supermarket scene, MerryMart credits its newfound success to its flexible nature as the underdog.
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Pandemic or not, DoubleDragon chief Edgar “Injap” Sia III is having one good year. Sia’s latest brainchild, MerryMart, took off with flying colors when it made its stock exchange debut and bumped up its opening share price by 50 percent. Within two weeks, MerryMart’s shares went from P1 peso apiece to P3.39 apiece, a big jump for the first initial public offering of 2020.

A rookie in the supermarket scene, MerryMart credits its newfound success to its flexible nature as the underdog.

“This behavior-altering COVID-19 pandemic has made the MerryMart team realize the benefit of being light and nimble in dealing with this once in a generation global pandemic,” said MerryMart chairman Edgar "Injap" Sia.

As a new player in the industry, “it will not have to face the major issue of reconfiguring a big complex structure because MerryMart has just started to build its foundation.”

Sia praised MerryMary’s flexibility “to mold its expansion masterplan” around the new normal.

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The company posted a 39.79 percent consolidated revenue growth year-on-year in the first quarter of 2020, going from P568 million in Q1 2019 to P795 million in Q1 2020. Meanwhile, the consolidated net income jumped 50 percent year-on-year from P5.55 million to P8.45 million.

Within three months, MerryMart’s consolidated total assets doubled from P914.6 million in December, 2019, to P1.9 billion in March, 2020, while consolidated total equity almost tripled within three months to P406.94 million. Now, the first IPO of the year has managed to raise P1.59 billion in its market debut after opening four branches throughout the country.

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Supermarkets have experienced decent earnings as demand has grown during the pandemic. Robinsons Retail's net jumped by 45 percent in Q1, while SM earnings jumped by 26 percent. 

While the fledgling MerryMart soars in sales, big businesses in other industrie are taking a tumble as they attempt to survive the ongoing pandemic and quarantine. Andrew Tan's Alliance Global Group recently reported a 32 percent drop in earnings in the first quarter, while Lucio Tan's PAL Holdings posted an operating loss of P6.55 billion.

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In a previous statement, Sia compared the economic situation to a war and large conglomerates to big ships. Despite its size, these big ships “panic” when the rules of the game are changed.

“The odds suddenly favor the success rate of tiding through of the team in the small boat rather than the bigger one, as they are used to have very little resources,” said Sia.

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Anri Ichimura
Staff Writer, Esquire Philippines
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