SM Supermalls: The Catalyst of Change
The SM brand has come a long way since opening its first shoe store in Carriedo, Manila in 1958. Celebrities, together with the company’s partners, tenants, and valued stakeholders, all gathered at the SM Mall of Asia for the brand’s diamond celebration. Festivities for 60 AweSM years kicked off with a line-up of sales, events, and surprises in SM malls nationwide.
“For six decades, SM has become part of the lives of every Filipino family – from choosing your first pair of school shoes at The SM Store, spending your first pay check on groceries at SM Markets to treat mom and dad, enabling a young couple to acquire an SMDC home of their own, to sharing a fun weekend with the whole family at SM Supermalls,” says Steven Tan, SM Supermalls’ Chief Operating Officer.
REALISING A DREAM
The SM story had its humble beginnings in buy-and-sell operations and sari-sari stores, born out of the dream of 12-year-old Henry Sy Sr who sought a better life for himself, his family, and his community. In 1972, Shoemart evolved into a full-fledged department store that provided its patrons with a one-stop shopping experience.
SM later ventured into appliances and supermarkets. By 1985, a time of political and economic turmoil, SM City North EDSA stood as the first SM shopping centre that would pave the way for the malling phenomenon in the Philippines. Not long after, Sy acquired a small bank and named it Banco de Oro (BDO). Together with his children and business partners, they piloted SM’s leading presence to what it is today – a namesake in retail, banking, and property development.
“While achieving milestones like turning 60 allows us to be nostalgic,” begins SM Investment Corporation Vice Chair Tessie Sy-Coson. “It is not just our history we are celebrating, but our future as well.” At present, SM Supermalls continue to excite generations of customers with innovations experienced in their signature establishments. Its 50th mall, SM Aura Premier is now the forerunner in fashion, dining, and art in Taguig City. After being awarded Best in Commercial Architectural Design by the Philippine Property Awards, it recently became the first in Philippine retail to achieve the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification by the US Green Building Council.
It is worth noting that majority of the mall’s construction materials have been reclaimed, repurposed, and locally sourced. From its current water and energy efficiency programs, as well as on-going recycling efforts, it is without a doubt that SM Aura Premier was built for an eco-conscious future. The LEED is indicative of the mall’s ability to fuse design with environmental sustainability.
As a joint venture between Keppel Land and BDO, a redeveloped Podium became the fruition of Ortigas’ new luxury lifestyle hub. Today it houses celebrated purveyors in fashion and retail, a selection of international culinary options, as well as a roster of prestigious wellness studios. In collaboration with top architecture firms Arquitectonica and Felix S Lim and Associates Co, Podium clinched eight awards at the PropertyGuru Asia Property Awards for universal design, retail development, landscape and architecture, and green development.
ABOVE AND BEYOND
Adding to SM Supermalls local awards are recognitions from Anvil Business Club, the Philippine Quill, and Reader’s Digest for outstanding communication tools, impactful digital campaigns, and exemplary creative work.
On a global stage, the company continues to bring home titles from prestigious award winning bodies.
As a finalist for Best Customer Experience Initiative at the World Retail Awards, SM found themselves atop with industry giants. During the Asia Pacific Stevie Awards and The International Visual Merchandising Awards, the brand was again recognised for innovation in the workplace and most outstanding visual merchandising executions.
A luminary in converging fields, SM’s future is synonymous to innovation in and outside of the country. Witness in all its endeavours — the story of a company shaped by the shifting needs and dreams of the millions they reach.