Editorial: When power lack hounds businesses

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Friday, April 25, 2014

ON BLACK Saturday, a coffeeshop on Roxas Ave. couldn't offer anything to a customer due to a sudden brownout.

The coffee machine needed power to press the espresso from the roasted ground beans. The blenders needed power, too, to make frappes.

Without it, the coffeeshop was also left without income, at least for that given time. So, it came to pass that at least P120 in lost revenue was incurred for every unsold cup of joe.


The coffeeshop is among several establishments in the area. Many others could have been affected, too, had they opened for business that day.

The rotational brownout that fell on a holiday might have been a perfect timing so that businesses would be affected less.

On regular days, however, losses in revenues might have spiked. Say, five coffeeshops in downtown area are left without power.

For every cup of coffee, say, P120 for each, that's P600 revenues lost, and then multiply that to 10 customers who walk away because they cannot get their orders for the time being, that's P6,000 losses for the five coffeeshops.

Of course, coffeeshops are not the only existing businesses in Davao.

In fact, the nook and cranny of the city is teeming with businesses that are heavily dependent on power.

Given that some of these operate on large-scale basis, losses in revenues might go higher than expected. Work crippled while everything's left in the dark.

Power shortage in Mindanao has a rippling effect even to small businesses like sari-sari stores. No cold softdrinks, no income. That will be that.

That's how current state of things go. Whether we like it or not, power is essential for development. A thriving city like Davao badly needs it.

Let's just keep our hopes high that efforts being undergone today will yield good results in the future -- or for that matter, a sufficient power supply that will keep the stream of investments going on the island.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on April 25, 2014.


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