Meralco power solutions fast-track growth, support sustainability goals for SMEs

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are a global economic driving force. In the Philippines, they, along with micro enterprises, account for 63% of employment and 36% of the country’s gross domestic product in 2020, according to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). In actual numbers, that translates to 5.71 million jobs and almost $132.3 billion in monetary value.,Providing support to SMEs is crucial as the country treads towards post-pandemic recovery.,And as most SMEs are located at the National Capital Region, Region IV‑A (CALABARZON), and Region III (Central Luzon) — regions producing 73% of the country’s GDP and where the Meralco franchise is present for its 93,000 SME customers — then the weight of this support is better understood.,For tailor-fit end-to-end energy solutions, Meralco has a segment dedicated to empowering SMEs to bounce back from this health crisis and achieve their business objectives: the Meralco Biz Partners Group. It is their thrust to understand, anticipate and address the energy needs of businesses with a monthly power demand of 5 to 499 kilowatts.,“With the SMEs as the backbone of the economy, it is important that they have constant and reliable partners who can help them grow their business. The Meralco Biz Partners Group offers a wide array of energy services and solutions that can address their needs — whether they are setting up a new business, recovering from a crisis or planning for expansion,” says Joy P. Mendoza, Assistant Vice President and Head of Meralco Biz Partners Group.,By collaborating with Biz Partners Group, SMEs can expect these benefits: early planning to ensure that energization schedule matches their target opening date; services that can help improve operational efficiency, generate savings, maximize profitability, and align with sustainability goals; as well as innovative technologies that can help propel their business to new heights.,Peak/Off-Peak Solution for business growth

Farmrichfoods Meat Processing and Poultry Dressing Plant Corporation, a thriving business in Pandi, Bulacan that saw new opportunities through Meralco’s services and solutions, decided to venture into poultry rendering — a process where chicken by-products are turned into other end-products such as animal feeds.,When Farmrichfoods CEO Sonny Sebastian spoke with Meralco, the latter recommended subscribing to Peak/Off-Peak (POP), an alternative energy pricing scheme designed to help lower total electricity expenses through rates based on peak and off-peak periods.,Since their rendering plant operates 24/7, its power-intensive machinery ran at night when generation rates and demand for electricity are lower, while low power-consuming machines ran during the day, thereby cutting on energy costs.,The set-up generated monthly savings of P35,000, which prompted Farmrichfoods to subscribe their dressing plant to POP as well.,“Lahat ng nati-tipid namin, ini-ipon at idina-dagdag para sa expansion, at marami pa kaming plano,” he said. “One-hundred percent, tiwala talaga ako sa recommendations ng Meralco,” says Sebastian.,Online payment services for safer and more convenient transactions,

MMP Group of Companies is a corporate group composed of several Jollibee outlets, a hotel, and four ice plants. Its president and CEO, Marc Pua, was working to turn his business into one of the leading diversified companies in South Luzon — a grand plan he had to suspend when the pandemic hit.,Pua called on Meralco Biz Partners to recommend solutions that could provide operational efficiency, particularly, payment flexibility.,Through their collaboration, MMP was able to enroll its accounts to Meralco’s Automatic Payment Arrangement (APA) and Meralco Online, which helped their employees limit physical contact and ensure safe and convenient payment of bills.,With APA, their bills are either automatically debited from company bank accounts, or charged to a credit card. Meanwhile, Meralco Online — a platform that provides access for customers to view their accounts and transact with Meralco anytime, anywhere — allowed MMP to view their bills and track payments online.,In hindsight, Pua believes he is one of the lucky ones for making it through. “Business is coming back, sales are coming back, our employees are getting hired back. We see a recovery back to 2019 performance by 2023,” he said.,“It’s a good sign,” Pua said, one that certainly became possible because MMP collaborated with Meralco Biz Partners.,Savings from solar energy solutions buoy business’ recovery amid the pandemic,

XRC Mall Developer, Inc., has 26 malls under the XentroMall brand, and five public markets across Luzon. With the series of lockdowns implemented by the government during the height of the pandemic, malls were definitely one of the hardest-hit industries. Its operations became limited resulting to a significant drop in foot traffic and loss of tenants as many businesses were forced to either temporarily or permanently close down.,The company’s saving grace, however, was the fact that its Chairman and CEO, Alexander M. Cruz, was already in talks with Meralco about the prospect of investing in solar panels prior to the crisis.,“We started negotiation for solar panels before the pandemic, but the execution happened late 2020 even as there were lockdowns,” Cruz said. “It definitely resulted in big savings on our electrical consumption — as much as 25% to 30% in sites now served by solar panels, from previously chalking up electricity costs of up to P4 million a month.” The savings could not have come a better time.,The strength of the economy’s backbone

Over the past two years, SMEs have been clinging to life support; this backbone of the economy had fallen limp from the trauma of the pandemic.,But backbones are strong for good reason. They may stumble, but they are characteristically resilient.,More importantly, there are strategic partners determined to help them survive — partners such as Meralco.,“The real path to building a nation and the true measure of a robust economy is not only seen on the massive scales of big corporations, but from the growth of small and medium-sized enterprise. This is why the Meralco Biz Partners Group is here: to steward the growth of SMEs,” concludes Meralco Chief Commercial Officer Ferdinand O. Geluz.,Let Meralco Biz Partners power a brighter tomorrow for your business. For a FREE Power Consult, email us at [email protected], call our business hotline 16210 or visit our website www.meralco.com.ph/biz.