SMX eyeing more convention centers

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SM Hotels and Conventions Corp., a subsidiary of the Henry Sy-led SM Investments Corp., is going to focus on building more convention centers near or inside the malls in the next few years to establish a firmer growth strategy.

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In an interview with reporters, Dexter Deyto, SMX Convention Specialist Corp. general manager, indicated that it is going to be more convenient and less expensive for the firm to build more convention centers that are near or inside SM malls.

“[In the next few years,] it is going to be more of tie ups with the malls because we already saw how it works. It is more convenient for meeting planners and guests,” he said.

“If the convention center is inside the mall, the investment is lower unlike setting up a new building,” Deyto added.

As of now, the company has conventions center in the cities of Manila, Davao, Taguig and Cebu of which most are inside the malls.

According to Deyto, while the group looks at Cagayan de Oro and General Santos City as the new locations for expansion, it is also planning to add another convention center in Cebu.

“There’s no definite timetable yet. In Cebu, they are looking at another one but [the plan is on]hold,” Deyto said.

“The one in Cebu, it will probably be a stand-alone. We’re looking into that,” he added.

In general, Deyto said that as far as the convention centers are concern, the company still sees more clients coming from the domestic side, but it still intends to grow its exposure for overseas events.

“SMX vision is to be the top of mind venue and meeting facility in strategic key destinations in the Philippines,” he added.

Madelaine B. Miraflor

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