GrowSari, a B2B ordering and store solution platform in the Philippines, and the Tesda Women Center (TWC) have announced the implementation of a partnership aimed at helping sari-sari micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) adapt to digitalisation.
As of January 2023, GrowSari will be a part of the iSTAR program of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda), providing graduates of the program access to resources. The partnership, which is in conjunction with Coca-Cola Philippines, builds on the success of the sari-sari Store Training and Access to Resources (STAR) program under TWC, which aims to train women micro-entrepreneurs and provide them with resources to grow their businesses. GrowSari will be educating graduates on the benefits of ecommerce technology.
The digitisation of sari-sari or traditional retail businesses has been a slow process, with many small businesses remaining untouched by technology. However, COVID-19 pandemic accelerating the adoption of ecommerce and digital retail services in several markets. As the informal retail sector increasingly turns to tech solutions, startups have a significant role to play in digitising traditional retailers, particularly in major urban centers.