Ashley Furniture Homestore opened its first branch yesterday at the Giftland Mall and Business Minister Dominic Gaskin said companies coming into the country should seek to partner with local businesses.
Being facilitated by the Unicomer brand, the US-based store launched its first branch on the Ground Floor of the Giftland Mall.
Giving the feature address, Gaskin noted that companies get into business due to self-interest and an obligation to their investors to make profits.
“Self-interest drives business. Businesses create opportunities for other businesses [and] the more businesses operating in Guyana, the more opportunities there are to do business in Guyana… It is my hope that businesses, and especially businesses with international representation doing business in Guyana, will advise us and share with us what opportunities they can bring for other businesses in Guyana and we are not asking businesses to be charitable, we understand that self-interest drives business and I am very comfortable with that reality,” he explained, while stating that he wants the country to be seen as a profitable place to do business by all businesses.
However, he noted that it is not a secret that the country has ambitions to add value to raw materials that are produced and “we are hungry for opportunities to access international markets” as well as international distribution channels.
“We want to know how we can do this. We want to partner with businesses that can help us do this, so I welcome Ashley Furniture Homestore to Guyana and in doing so I would like to publicly express the hope that the company will see the long-term benefits of operating in Guyana not only as a supplier of finished products to consumers but as a partner with Guyanese businesses looking to provide quality goods and services that meet international requirements,” Gaskin said.
Managing Director of Unicomer Clyde De Haas also made brief remarks and stated that Unicomer’s relationship with the Ashley brand goes back a number of years, starting with the establishment of galleries in their Courts flagship stores.
Due to the interest of their customers in the Ashley brand, they were encouraged to offer the full-fledged “Ashely experience” first in Jamaica and then in Trinidad.
“…And now it is Unicomer of Guyana and we are proud to offer the Ashley experience to the Guyanese public and thereby taking retail to the next level,” he added.