Interview with Pascale Vermeerbergen Jimenez, VP Business Development, SM Retail
How would you define the current momentum of the retail sector in Asia?
Asia is considered the place to be today, with the slow down in the other parts of the world. It is true, however, that some countries are experiencing more momentum than others, especially the emerging ones.
Where are the growth areas for the retail sector in Asia?
Of course, I would say in the Philippines and in all areas. People are seeking new shopping destinations, such as the Philippines, which has lead retail companies to attract international businesses and brands, that tourists would be looking for in any other shopping destination.
What are the challenges and issues?
Each country has different challenges and issues, but in general, the lacking infrastructure in some of the emerging countries would be one to highlight.
Pascale Vermeerbergen Jimenez, Vice President for Business Development for SM Retail inc., a Belgian national, economist, specialized in Marketing, Communication and Branding, started with SM Retail inc., the retail arm of the SM Group of Companies, 8 years ago, as VP Marketing for the SM Department stores. In 2010, she started up the Department for Business Development, to attract International brands & businesses to the Philippines, and facilitate their entry to the Philippine market. This new area managed to forge partnerships with Forever 21, Uniqlo, Joseph UK and Crate & Barrel, among others. A portfolio of affordable and luxury brands that have contributed to changing the retail landscape in the Philippines.
Prior to joining SM, Pascale's work experience was acquired internationally, in different countries, UK, Spain and UAE specifically, where she occupied International/Management positions in Carrefour, Atari, The Walt Disney company, LVMH and Estee Lauder. After living in the Philippines for almost 9 years, Pascale relocated to Singapore last June 1, to set up the Representative office for SM Retail inc.