Paterno’s Phil-Seven puts brakes on spending

Leading convenience store Philippine Seven Corp. has shelved its spending plans and scaled back store openings this year to preserve cash amid the coronavirus crisis.

‘We’re holding off all capex (capital expenditure). We were supposed to build 400 stores this year. We’ll only open 200, and that’s only because we’ve broken ground on them already,’ PhilSeven president and CEO Jose Victor P. Paterno was quoted as saying in an online forum sponsored by the Philippine Franchise Association.

PhilSeven, however, remains optimistic about its prospects for the rest of the year despite the negative impact of the deadly virus on local businesses.

“The situation remains to be fluid and we are continuously evaluating our market development plan. Further, we are classified as providers of essential services that is why the majority of our stores remain open during the enhanced community quarantine,” PhilSeven said in a regulatory filing.

Philseven said its employees had difficulty in accessing our stores due to the shutdown of public transport.

The movement of goods and essential workers were likewise hampered due to the Luzon-wide lockdown.

Nevertheless, the company is “now slowly reopening stores during the transition to general community quarantine.”

“We believe that things are improving and we are in a better position to respond to the opportunities brought about by this health

crisis,” the convenience store giant said.