It Starts at Home

Con­tin­u­ing the vi­sion of his el­ders, Dex­ter Go op­tions for fine Filipino homes, writes Paolo Ver­gara

Philippine Tatler - - LIFE | BUSINESS PROFILE -

he lo­cal mar­ket for de­sign has steadily evolved over the decades. Be­fore, clients were more fo­cused on func­tion and con­ser­va­tive in their choices of style. But as the econ­omy grew, so did the abil­ity of peo­ple to ex­press them­selves through their liv­ing spa­ces.

About two decades af­ter World War II’s pe­riod of re­con­struc­tion, the luxe hous­ing sec­tor in the Philip­pines be­gan to boom. See­ing this as an op­por­tu­nity, the fam­ily-owned Dex­ter­ton Cor­po­ra­tion Philip­pines sought to es­tab­lish its roots as an im­porter of up­scale build­ing ma­te­ri­als. As more houses were built, the brand de­cided to shift its fo­cus to in­te­rior de­sign, of­fer­ing pre­mium home so­lu­tions, ac­ces­sories, and fur­ni­ture.

In the mid-’90s and meet Dex­ter Go, of the fam­ily’s sec­ond gen­er­a­tion, grad­u­ated from De La Salle Univer­sity with a dou­ble ma­jor in eco­nom­ics and man­age­ment. He would work in hard­ware stores and sim­i­lar re­tail out­lets in North Amer­ica, where he learnt the ropes of the trade from the ground up. This hands-on work ethic and grad­ual risethrough-the-ranks ex­pe­ri­ence would even­tu­ally in­flu­ence his lead­er­ship style. Re­turn­ing to the Philip­pines at age 24 to help out at Dex­ter­ton, Go found him­self tak­ing ad­di­tional re­spon­si­bil­i­ties in the fam­ily busi­ness.

This year, his par­ents have of­fi­cially stepped down, turn­ing over the com­pany’s reins to Go, his sis­ter Au­drey, and wife Lin­nea Back­man. Even to­day, he con­tin­ues to learn about the in­tri­ca­cies of the op­er­a­tions side of a busi­ness—from hu­man re­source man­age­ment to ware­house tech­nolo­gies. The pres­sure is on, par­tic­u­larly be­cause the com­pany prides it­self as be­ing the most trusted lo­cal dis­trib­u­tor for some of the finest be­spoke and luxe brands from around the world.

De­spite the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties he now bears, Go ad­mits that suc­cess is a shared thing. “I be­lieve that my key em­ploy­ees should be given a more ac­tive role in the de­ci­sion-mak­ing pro­cesses,” he says, adding that he en­joys be­ing at the prob­lem-solv­ing cen­tre of the ac­tion, as col­leagues and part­ners trust him to get the job done.

As the com­pany mod­ernises its in­ter­nal op­er­a­tions amidst set­ting up new show­rooms, it also aims to ex­pand its ser­vice of­fer­ings in the realm of hos­pi­tal­ity by de­vel­op­ing spa and pool ameni­ties, and even of­fice spa­ces and a mid-range fur­ni­ture line. All these dreams are rooted in hard work and hum­ble begin­nings ex­em­pli­fied by Go. With such a strong DNA, Dex­ter­ton Cor­po­ra­tion Philip­pines may just be in for another spec­tu­lar decade in in­te­rior de­sign.

Dex­ter­ton Cor­po­ra­tion Vice Pres­i­dent Dex­ter Go at the Störmer show­room; Gessi Pri­vate Well­ness Shower; (inset) Tribù Tosca Daybed Out­door

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