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5 steps to become a mall concessionaire

Department stores are great venues to sell your product.
By Entrepreneur Staff |

If your brand is fast gaining ground and you need to reach more customers than those who visit your existing retail shop, worry no more. Department stores, which we have a glut of in this country, are just waiting for you to invade as a store concessionaire. Besides satisfying a wide range of consumers’ needs, department stores could offer you space through a concession arrangement, which would elevate your business to the next level.

Want to be a department store concessionaire? Here’s how:

• To explore your chances of becoming a concessionaire, first you have to make contact with the right people, like those of a department store’s merchandising team that are authorized to receive and approve applications for a concession.

“You may get in touch with them through their phone numbers, e-mail or websites,” suggests Angela Perez-Rubio, Robinsons Department Store assistant vice president (AVP) for merchandising. “Also, visit them at their office to acquire more details and, at the same time, meet them personally since they are the ones whom you would be working with in the process.”

• After obtaining all the needed information, formalizing your application comes next. Submit a Letter of Intent along with the comprehensive profile of your company, brand concept and merchandise list. These are just some of the paperwork you need to accomplish for the department store.

• Although you only need to present your business permits at the department store’s request, these documents must always be on hand so as to avoid being caught empty-handed when asked about them.

• Prospective concessionaires “are expected to have legitimate businesses upon application with a department store,” explains Preachy Zorilla, who is also an AVP for merchandising of the Gokongwei-owned department store. “Otherwise, you’ll have a slim chance of being accepted, for it shows that you’re incapable of sustaining the business not only financially but operationally as well.”

• Payments also depend on the department store offering a concession. While some do not require a prospective concessionaire to pay a fee, it’s still advisable to be financially prepared, as others may ask for a bond of some sort as a security measure, Zorilla says.

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Photo by Ben Schumin

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