Mindanao Times

‘Sari-sari’ inspires start-up to get Filipinos investing in US market


SHARI-Shari, the first Filipino tech company to provide access to the US stock market through its platform, is a start-up inspired by our neighbourh­ood sundry store. Sari-sari stores are integral to our culture as they are our go-to shop for convenienc­e and affordabil­ity, whether to satisfy cravings for favorite snacks or provide basic, daily, and emergency needs. The sarisari stores allow us access to products we can buy in small units, or colloquial­ly “tingi.”

Influenced by the affordabil­ity and accessibil­ity features of the sari-sari store and through a partnershi­p with a duly licensed US registered broker dealer, Shari-Shari developed a platform that provides Filipinos the access and opportunit­y to start investing in the US stocks market.

In recent years, fuelled with advances in technology, retail investing in the stock market has been growing in popularity around the world and Philippine­s is well-placed for this growing trend.

Filipinos have long been regular consumers of global brands from cars to technology, to fashion and entertainm­ent, as well as health and food products. Philippine­s has also consistent­ly been in top ranks for heavy internet usage in the region and even globally. With the pandemic, Philippine­s was pushed to embrace digital transforma­tion quickly with businesses bringing their products online and techsavvy Filipinos adopting digital payments almost instantly.

“With Shari-Shari and in partnershi­p with a duly licensed US registered broker dealer, Filipinos can now own full or fractional shares of funds and of global brands they regularly use and love. We want to give seasoned investors the opportunit­y to diversify their investment­s and we want to contribute to seeing new and young investors get started with investing.” shares May Ajero, one of the five all-Filipino founders of Shari-Shari.

Shari-Shari has also partnered with Unionbank for its unified payments platform called UPAY and has registered as an Operator of Payment System with Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas so customers can fund their brokerage accounts with Philippine Pesos via UnionBank online, e-Wallets, and online transfers from other local banks. There is no need to open a USD bank account.

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