How 2 PH budget salons are going global

Posted at 03/30/2014 8:45 AM

MANILA, Philippines - There is something about your good old neighborhood salons that make them thrive in every community.

Filipinos love to always look and feel good, which is why they seek superior quality service when it comes to salons. This has driven many community salons to level up through franchising without compromising affordability.

Franchise mentor and Francorp CEO Ma. Alegria Sibal-Limjoco noted that two popular salon salon franchises Reyes Haircutters (RHC) and Orange Blush Salon started out as neighborhood salons.

"When I met them years ago, they were just small salons, within a village or street corner. But I saw their potential, that if they just level up their services and presentation, and follow the formula for success of franchising, they can grow to hundreds, and even go global," she said.

Reyes Haircutters

Before Reyes Haircutters opened in New York, Los Angeles and London, it blazed a trail in the local scene with its cheap haircuts for just P49.99. Now, Reyes Haircutters has become a full salon with a day spa.

Celestino “Les” Reyes, chairman and chief executive officer of Reyes Hair Company International Inc., conceptualized RHC in January 2001, envisioning it as a “Filipino Family Salon.”

He introduced quality low-priced unisex haircuts in a clean salon with professional service and smiling uniformed staff. He believed that
the Filipino “masa” deserve quality service and have the right to feel and look good too.

Sure enough, that kind of positioning helped RHC capture the mass market. Many other neighborhood salons followed suit and tried to beat the P49.99 haircut.

With quality grooming and beauty services, RHC grew fast from 6 company-owned salons in 2001 to 136 branches so far in NCR, Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Of this, 122 are franchised branches.

To maintain the consistency of quality, Reyes tries to get good people to man his outlets and get the right franchise partners to work with him.

The Reyes Haircutters salons continue to evolve, offering affordable facials, spas, and massages. It also developed its own “RHC” signature branded salon products.

For his franchisees, Reyes plans to expand the existing branches and create more “Express” branches, which do not offer spa services.

He strives to fulfill the company’s mission of ensuring that each customer will leave the salon happy and that everyone, whether rich or poor, will get equal quality treatment.

Orange Blush

Orange Blush Salon started as a simple, no-frills express salon in Del Pilar Ext., Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija.

Joby Linsangan-Moreno, former model and beauty queen, is the owner of Orange Blush Salon, which brought "urban" quality beauty services to Nueva Ecija.

Nueva Ecija residents flocked to the salon for haircuts, hair treatments and makeovers, which are available at reasonable prices. For instance, hair rebonding costs only P1,100, mani-pedi for only P150 and haircut for only P60. Haircuts are further discounted to P50 when you visit on a Wednesdays, considered the salon's “Orange Day”.

A medical technologist by profession but a beauty specialist by vocation, Moreno started the business with just one outlet in 2003, with only P30,000 capital.

She wanted make sure Orange Blush is several notches higher than the ordinary neighborhood salon by offering affordable, fast and quality service from friendly staff.

Moreno is hoping to grow Orange Blush into the number one budget hair salon in Region 3 and the leading budget hair salon in the country in the next five years.

She chose the franchising route to expansion in 2008. From only 4 outlets in Nueva Ecija, franchising has further catapulted her growth to 17 branches at present, 10 of which are franchised outlets in Metro Manila and beyond. With only P450,000, one can already open a salon, inclusive of franchise fee, operations manual, training, equipment, facilities and supplies.

Orange Blush Salon branches are now located in Makati, Manila, Quezon City, Mandaluyong, and Pasig, as well as Pampanga, Bulacan, Tarlac, and Pangasinan.

Moreno is bringing Orange Blush to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, sparking hopes of becoming one of Asia's leading budget hair salon in the future.

Advice to entrepreneurs

Reyes and Moreno offered advice to entrepreneurs with neighborhood salons.

"Work hard, believe in your products, yourself, and your people," Reyes said.

Moreno said focus and a positive mindset is critical to one’s success.

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Franchise Talk is an editorial partnership between ABS-CBNnews.com and Francorp Philippines (International Franchise Corporation of the Philippines).