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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Emerging Entrepreneurs

Looks like a couple of us are following my dad’s footsteps. Dad was an entrepreneur in his own right since he took the reigns from his father and expanded the family’s insurance company. My brother, Jim, while working full-time, owns a Zagu stand (selling powdered shakes with tapioca balls) at a local department store. His second Zagu stand is opening in another location in a couple of weeks. My sister, Joy, started a buy-and-sell clothing business and has been regularly joins bazaars. She also owns a food stand, Dipped Banana on a Stick, (selling, you guessed it … frozen bananas dipped in a variety of flavors). Her stand opens this September.

I am also planning a small business. It is still in the very preliminary stages. I am partnering with my mom’s good friend, Tita Monsie, and we are looking at exporting fresh and south sea pearl jewelry from the Philippines to the U.S. Tita Monsie has a lot of jewelry contacts in the Philippines and I will be her contact here in the States. We really want to do this the right way so I am trying to figure out the tax and importation laws. (These are so complicated!). I’m also looking at what business permits are needed and any other possible sales venues that we can consider. Hopefully we can work this all out soon.

In the mean time, I have several pieces that I want to show a select few. I’m hosting a small soiree here at our home in 2 weeks and am inviting some friends (and friends of friends) who want to preview the pieces. The goal is to see if people are interested and if there is a potential market here. Also, to find out what they like and what they don’t like. That way I can relay to Tita Monsie what pieces we should consider exporting when we’re ready.

I’m kind of excited since I have always liked jewelry – especially South Sea Pearl jewelry. I used to work for a company that produced the best quality Philippine pearls and manufactured exceptional fine jewelry. I learned so much in my 4 years there and was lucky enough to be part of production, merchandising, marketing and sales. I got to attend a lot of functions and was able to travel abroad where I saw some truly beautiful, million dollar, world-class pieces. I also got such great training that I now can really appreciate good quality and fine craftsmanship. Of course, the pieces we want to bring in are less grand and are more geared to every day use. But they will be just as beautiful. Anyway, hopefully we can find a way to help expand exposure for Philippine pearls in the U.S.

If you know of anyone who would be interested to attend my little “Pearl Soiree”, please let me know! I would really appreciate the referrals. =)

P.S. I wanted to post pictures of the pieces I have so readers can appreciate the beauty of the pearls, but my photos came out so amateurish that I think they do more harm than good!


Auntie Lillian said...

Good luck with your pearl soiree. Alot of women - especially Filipinos -like wearing small pearls for everyday outings . Hope you have a good turnout and positive feedback.

Auntie Alice said...

Good luck Jo, I love pearls too! Pearls go well in every occasion and with any outfit.

joyeee said...

That's a great idea dets...calling it a Pearl Soiree!!!:) I do hope lots of people go to view your beautiful pearl selections!:) goodluck with that! tell me all about it after:) oh yeah, im excited about my soon to open'll be a lot of work though...thanks for blogging about it!:)

Junarakasa's Story said...

Thanks Auntie Lillian and Auntie Alice. I sure wish you both were here because I am so sure you guys would support my "business". =)

Hey Joybert, yes, I thought calling a "soiree" would make it seem more classy than it really is! =) BTW, save me a dipped banana for when I get home ...