Sunnyware Brings a Ray of Hope
Sunnyware Brings a Ray of Hope Amidst the Pandemic
By Coni Tejada
January 18, 2021
Sunnyware Philippines' success is a family affair, headed by their father, CEO and President Oscar Sze (center left), flanked by his sons: Marketing Director Stephen Sze (leftmost), Sales Director Stewart Sze (center right), and Production Director Spencer Sze (rightmost).
With enterprises of all sizes switching off their signs for the foreseeable future due to the pandemic, PhilTop Industries, Inc., more popularly known as Sunnyware, a one-stop shop, long-term use plastic company, known for its food keepers, plant pots and storage boxes, is keeping its lights on—and adding a few more.
“Prior to the pandemic, our expansion plan was already on-going. There’s really the demand and we need to keep up with it,” says Stephen Sze, PhilTop Industries, Inc. Marketing Director.
But that’s not to say that they weren’t affected by Covid-19. “The biggest impact on the company happened during the two months of no operation during the lockdown. During that period, there were no sales and no collection from customers. The worst is that the payments stopped.”
A helping hand
But financial help came in from Meralco when the power distributor waived their Guaranteed Minimum Billing Demand (GMBD) for the first few months of lockdown.
“We are very thankful to Meralco because during the first two months of lockdown, they were able to waive the minimum usage fee. Our minimum usage fee is big. With that money, we could help our employees who are in need. We gave out financial aid, rice, and canned goods. Not only to our regular employees but also to the contractual. Currently, there’s around 350 employees and counting.”
But they didn’t always have hundreds on their payroll.
In 1988, the company was only producing hangers, and employees were just a handful. One person operated the machine. Another was in charge of packing. Marilyn Tan, Sze’s aunt, was the accounting department and was also answering calls from customers. Sze’s uncle, Ramon Tan, did the maintenance work. His father Oscar was the one-man sales team as well as delivery of merchandise and collection of payments.
Money to start the business also didn’t come in easy. His grandparents – originally from Taiwan – had to sell their home in Hong Kong to help fund the then start-up. The older couple had to relocate permanently in the Philippines and also assisted with the business.
Thirty years later, that gamble has paid off. Sales have bounced back since the lockdown and even registered growth for this homegrown brand.
“The food keepers, it wasn’t much affected because maybe, there are less moms who want to buy food keepers for their children for school but more people now start a business at home. They cook food and then they sell them,” Sze says. Some in-demand items also include flower pots, since people started to grow plants during the pandemic, plus, storage and shoe boxes, since consumers are organizing more at home.
And there will be more of these.
Expanding the business
Energized with the help of Meralco, Sunnyware’s fourth factory is about to start its operations. This one-hectare facility in Caloocan will house thirty more machines and a warehouse, as well as the new main office and sales department. “They installed the electricity very fast.”
“Currently, we are looking for machine operators, mold engineers to create new products and maintenance of molds for the plastic. Also, packers,” Sze discloses.
It’s rare for businesses to be thinking of scaling up in a pandemic, but for Sunnyware, the future looks bright.
To learn more about our products and services, contact your Meralco Relationship Manager or call 16210.
Story originally posted on Power Club.