Imagine a house packed to the rafters with possessions—old and new acquisitions accumulated through the years—and you have a scenario that is common in many Filipino households.
In fact, for residents of a bustling metropolis like Metro Manila, where a large chunk of the populace resides in cramped townhouses and condominium units, the lack of storage space is fast becoming an aggravation.
For Sam Peterson, founder and Managing Director of Loc&Stor 24/7 in the Philippines, this was the situation that presented an opportunity to bring the highly promising self-storage industry to the Philippines. After gaining nearly two decade of multi-national management experience in Asia, Sam moved to the Self-Storage sector where he ran the Asian business for a global leader in design and construction of self-storage facilities. With the learnings of a global leader and the experience of facility design and build across Asia, it became clear to Sam it was time to make the step to owner/operator.
“By working with different self-storage operators across the globe, I was able to take the best practices I learned and bring them to the Philippine market,” said Peterson, whose wife Anna is a Filipina. “I looked at different markets, specifically Malaysia, Vietnam, Philippines, and Indonesia. In the end, I found the Philippines to be the best fit of my vision of world-class self-storage.”
Filipinos are ready for self-storage
After rigorous planning and market studies, Sam saw that the Philippines was ready for a world-class self-storage facility. In 2014, he opened Loc&Stor 24/7 in Pasig City, home to a thriving business district, a slew of gated villages, and scores of residential and office high-rises.
“I personally believe there’s a number of sectors here in the Philippines where consumers are ready for a truly world-class product, self-storage being one of these sectors. I saw that opportunity here, and that’s when we developed the concept and the imagery—and got it up and running,” he added.
Peterson admitted, however, that it was a tough job at the beginning, especially since at that time there wasn’t as much awareness of self-storage in the Philippines as there was in other countries. Just think: the industry started in the US as early as the 1960s and around two decades ago, some countries in Asia had caught on.
“So now we have a job not only of creating awareness of our company, but creating awareness of self-storage at large, on a very small budget, at that,” he pointed out.
Peterson recalls the earlier years: “We initially went entrepreneurial. I was the IT guy, the finance guy, and the sales and marketing guy rolled into one. There was literally just two, then three of us, at the start. Now we’re growing and expanding—and we continue to see opportunities for our service and continue to look for new locations.”
Peterson said he could go on forever on why Filipinos should consider self-storage, but he noted that the most important reason for keeping your valuables and other possessions in such a facility is, “It gives you peace of mind.”
For Peterson, self-storage is an amazing concept. “I used to ask myself, why would people want to place their stuff in self-storage? So I looked at it very logically. And I tried it, myself. I went through our home and stored the things we didn’t want to throw away because it might be connected to us somehow or our kids might use it one day, but was not really what we wanted in the home at that time. We got all that stuff and placed it in self-storage. And I’m telling you, when we got back to the house,we had a great feeling that our home was the way we wanted it… uncluttered and nothing out of place. That feeling alone is enough reason for anyone to use self-storage,” he said.
At present, Loc&Stor 24/7 has facilities strategically located in the cities of Pasig and Makati. In fact, they have just opened their second Makati facility conveniently located on JP Rizal. These are frequented by storers from both north and south of Metro Manila, but to even better serve this broader market, they have sites under construction in the north and south of Manila.
Peterson affirmed that they have been very particular about Loc&Stor’s locations, as they want to ensure not just their accessibility but more importantly their safety and security.
“The facilities must be in strictly flood-free areas,” he stressed. “If it didn’t survive Ondoy, it’s a no-go.”
But what makes for a truly “world-class” self-storage facility? For Peterson, Loc&Stor 24/7 is a cut above the rest because of the company’s attention to details in every aspect of its facility and service. They make sure that everyone in the team—from the staff to security personnel—is always there to meet the needs of storers at all times.
“When you walk through Loc&Stor 24/7’s facilities, all these little details should add up. This is why we believe that for 99.9 percent of our customers, Loc&Stor 24/7 exceed their expectations and they have a great feeling about what we provide,” Peterson proudly declared. “For the remaining percentage, we are hugely responsive to their need for something more—we go back to the customer, ask how we can learn from them because they help us see our blind-spots.”
However, Peterson shared that the greatest lesson he has learned so far is that creating awareness is more important than anything else, especially in a growing market like this.
“I think we’re in a good place in the Philippines and that the Filipinos appreciate the product. We want to make things easy and convenient for them. There’s always more work to be done, but I believe that we will continue to grow,” Peterson stated.
About the company
Loc&Stor 24/7 offers more than seven storage sizes that suit customers’ varying needs, with the smallest one the size of eight balikbayan boxes and the largest being bigger than a sea container. The facility is also equipped with high-definition CCTV cameras with night vision, smoke detectors and fire alarms, sprinkler systems, and back-up generators. Additional security is ensured by a world’s leading self-storage access and unit alarm system.
The building also complies with stringent fire and floor-loading codes. It also has climate-controlled or air-conditioned units that regulate humidity—ideal for storing humidity-sensitive valuables like leather goods, antique documents, special garments, collectible books and artworks.
Loc&Stor 24/7’s storage units are professionally cleaned on a regular basis and are subject to monthly pest deterrent steps to keep out “unwanted guests”.
More importantly, you may drop by your storage units at any point in time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week even without prior notice and without additional fees.
Loc&Stor 24/7 is now accepting reservations for its newest facility at 155 JP Rizal Ave., Space Solutions Bldg., Brgy. Tejeros, Makati. Reserve now and get first dibs on your preferred unit number and location. This facility also offers more size options—locker, small, medium, large, x-large, xx-large, jumbo, and the new gigantic.
You can also avail of two months free rental if you sign up for a 12-month contract. For reservations, call 8109556 or 09177095390. Lockers are also offered at Php 999 for a limited time period in all Loc&Stor 24/7 facilities.Experience the world-class self-storage facilities of Loc&Stor 24/7. For inquiries on rental fees and other vital information, visit its website at www.locnstor247.com.