SM Supermalls is the most famous mall in the Philippines. Almost every part of the country has SM Supermalls.

The new generations probably didn’t know what SM stands for before it became a prominent name in the Philippines. SM has an interesting and surprising story of its own, so we bring you down to memory lane of its roots and to the future of this supermall.

1. SM stands for “Shoe Mart” – it’s originally a shoe store.

Before SM earned its giant status in the business sector, it started a humble beginning. SM was originally a shoe store called “Shoemart” founded by Henry Sy way back in October 1958. Sy’s first shoe store was located in downtown Manila.

In 1972, Henry expanded Shoemart as a full line store when his unique chain of shoe stores with “a store layout and merchandising concepts” gained recognition from customers. Since then, it conquers the Philippines as the largest shopping center.

2. SM owns the third largest mall in the world.

It was in November 1985 when the first SM shopping center was established and it became one of the largest malls in the country and world today.

The 3rd largest mall in the world is SM City North EDSA in Quezon City with the floor area of 424,691 square meters.

SM also claims that SM City North EDSA is the first inventor of the “one-stop shopping complex” and “malling” as a pastime for Filipinos. It has more than 800 retail shops, more than 200 restaurants, and nearly 4,000 parking slots.

3. SM has 67 malls all over the country.

SM’s growth has been unstoppable since 1985, with over 60 malls nationwide unhindered by other competitors.

It has generated thousands of jobs for Filipinos and economic growth for the Philippines with famous malls such as SM Megamall, SM North EDSA, SM Mall of Asia (Luzon), SM Seaside Cebu (Visayas), and SM Lanang Davao (Mindanao).

4. There are SM Supermalls outside the country.
Photo: Lynda C. Corpuz / Entrepreneur Philippines

Amazingly, SM expansion extends outside the country and it now has six (6) malls in China – in Xiamen, Jinjiang, Chengdu, Suzhou, Chongqing, and Zibo.

There is also an SM mall in Guam located at the Agana Shopping Center, however, unlike in the Philippines SM Guam is small in size.

5. SM and Mercury Drug had a ‘conflict’.

Ever wondered why you can’t find even a single Mercury Drug inside of any SM Malls in the Philippines? Apparently, there are two reasons why.

The first reason is, it is believed that a struggling Sy during 1950’s wasn’t allowed by Mercury Drug to lend him a space for his shoe store. Because of this, Sy promised of not allowing Mercury Drug to enter his store when he succeeds.

The second reason was told by Sy’s daughter, Tessie Sy-Coson. According to her 2002 interview in Philippine Star, she told that her father and Mercury Drug’s owner Mariano Que are good friends and that the “only reason why there is no Mercury Drug in the SM malls is that we could not agree on the rental rates in the malls.”

6. SM and its real meaning?

While SM originally means Shoemart, some believed it has an entirely different meaning.

The most famous story about the meaning of SM can be traced back during the Martial Law period where Sy is rumored to be one of Marcos’ cronies, hence, the name Sy-Marcos is the meaning of SM.

7. SM malls have a high class architectural and luxury structures.

SM knew that design is one of the key features of their shopping center’s success. They don’t want to be left behind by its competitors in creating exceptional structures made by the top architects in the country.

These masterpiece architectural and luxury buildings can be experienced in SM Seaside City, Cebu. SM Seaside City is dubbed as an “architectural jewel” for its nautilus-inspired design. In Bonifacio Global City, SM Aura Premier is known for its unusual yet sophisticated design. Lastly, SM Mall of Asia’s gigantic and ship-like design is recognized around the world.

As of this writing, SM has not only ventured into shopping malls, they are also into real estate, making high-rise condominium. They are paving the way for “condo-malls” a combination of condominium and shopping center in one building. An example of this is SM Light Mall/Residences in EDSA, Mandaluyong City.

SM has been expanding and there’s no stopping them.

Via: Juan Republic