Appliance Store Chain Automatic Centre Shutting Down Because of Pandemic

Another one bites the dust.

Automatic Centre, one of the oldest appliance and electronics retail stores in the Philippines, is shutting down effective October 10, 2021. 

In a letter obtained by Esquire Philippines, Automatic Appliances Inc., (the parent company of Automatic Centre) president and CEO Geoffrey Lim said the pandemic has caused “tremendous challenges” on their business.

“As AAI winds down its appliance retail operations, we would like to assure you that we remain committed to honoring our obligations and that we intend to work closely with each of you to ensure a smooth transition and closing process,” the statement read.

Founded in 1948, Automatic Centre was established by the Lim family. It started with a 40-square meter store in Avenida, Rizal, selling light bulbs, wires, sockets and other electrical supplies. It has about 20 retail outlets as of 2021 located mostly inside shopping malls.

In his note, Lim said the family is open to outside parties “that may be interested in using / adopting the ‘Automatic Centre’ brand name moving forward.”

The family also owns the Blims Fine Furniture chain of furniture stores through the Blims Lifestyle Group, which will remain open.

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Paul John Caña
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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