ABOUT PIANDRÉ

We believe that if we take care of our people, they in turn will take better care of our clients.

We grow so we can give.

Entrepreneur Rosalinda "Linda" Zamora Francisco started Piandré in 1987, channeling the popular high-end salons (called “beauty parlors” then).

Over time, LZF’s values-based management has led to expansion—including the founding of a salon cooperative as a viable business model.

To mark the salon chain’s 30 years of success, LZF, CEO of Piandré salon chain, started with Sharing the Hundredfold, a series of projects that aim to help its employees enhance their earnings and make some contributions to institutions.

Her main endeavor last 2017 was to give the first Piandré franchise to the Piandré Salon Multipurpose Cooperative Inc. - the newest Piandré salon at U.P. Town Center.

Co-op power

The U.P. Town Center branch is the second Piandré salon that is owned by the 300-member cooperative. The first co-op-owned Piandré salon was built on Del Monte Avenue, Quezon City in 1995. LZF had advanced the capital which cost less than a million pesos then. It was gradually paid up by the co-op. The two-story, 100 sqm branch is one of the most lucrative among the Piandré branches.
How else can I share the blessings but by initiating another cooperative-owned salon? This was put up for their development

— Linda Zamora Francisco, Piandré CEO

LZF, Piandré CEO
All the profits go to the cooperative.

The branch at U.P. Town Center was born not only to give the employees more earning capacity but it was also a business strategy.

LZF is closed down one of its branches and is transferring the staffers to the mall, which is easily accessible. Moreover, the mall brings in more customer traffic.

LZF maintains that the franchise is exclusive to Piandré employees.

The co-op paid the franchise fee upon the contract signing. “They have reached this financial capability and can stand on their own with guidance,” says LZF
The 248-sqm salon is at P8 million, which was funded by the co-op. The cost includes construction and start-up supplies which are some 1000 SKUs (stock keeping units) or products, notes LZF. The salon, however, will be managed by family-owned Piandré Salon Inc.

“We have an agreement that they cannot separate from Piandré because they will be carrying our name,” she says.
The uniqueness of this co-op is that they are in the same business as us. It’s not in the rules though. Other companies don’t give the same business to their co-ops. I don’t see our salon co-op as a competitor. We have proven this model to be successful.

Rainy Day Savings

In 1990, LZF established an informal savings-and-loan facility to address the employees’ financial concerns and to discourage them from going to other money lenders.

Five years later, it evolved into a credit cooperative and was acknowledged by the Cooperative Development Authority. The new set-up enabled the co-op to own its first Piandré salon along Del Monte Avenue.

As it started owning retail brands, it became the Piandré Salon Multipurpose Cooperative Inc. The co-op members elect a board of directors to jointly determine how the business is run.
Employees contribute a low of P500 a month to the cooperative’s kitty which is deducted from the salary. Many of them consider it their savings for the rainy day. They can avail themselves of a loan worth up to double their share capital.

For instance, if an employee put in an accumulated P100,000 to the co-op, he can borrow P200,000 and pay it back with interest over 24 months.

“The procedure for lending depends on how much share capital the members have earned. They can borrow depending on their financial capacity,” says Gregor Teaño, the co-op chairman and senior stylist.

These plans cover provident loan for home repair and construction; loans for emergencies, education, appliances and businesses for members who want to embark on another livelihood.

Total Development

The cooperative has many success stories. Employees begin in modest jobs at the salon and through their initiative have earned extra income to allow them to own several houses, cars or travel to Europe.

Elsa David started as a manicurist in 1992 and is now a senior stylist. She received a yearly loan from the cooperative to pay for the education of her four children.

Today, they are professionals with impressive credentials, one of them is an accountant with an MBA from Ateneo.

LZF points out that the co-op distributes the yearly dividends from profits earned from interests on the loans and its businesses such as the Del Monte branch and certain salon products. Last 2016, the co-op distributed P4 million in dividends.
“I wanted to give the staff the opportunity to be owners so they can also develop managerial abilities. It’s for their total development. Here, they learn the value of money, cultivate more skills to improve their livelihood and enrich their lives through retreats and values formation programs. When they grow, they realize that they can positively influence others. They know their worth and they have the right values,” she says.

In keeping with the Sharing the Hundredfold theme, LZF encourages the employees to share through a “love fund” to help Marawi refugee children, Negrenses Volunteer for Change, Graces Home for the Elderly and A-HA Learning Center, a tutoring program for underprivileged children.

“The staff should appreciate their blessings. We grow so we can give,” says LZF.

Starting out

Early in her entrepreneurial career, LZF aspired to match the services of hairdresser Richard Warwick and other high-end salons in deluxe hotels.

In 1987, she opened Piandré along Amorsolo Street, Makati, hoping to capture the Makati executives. Piandré was coined after the nicknames of her daughters Peachy (Maria Paz Zulueta-Maxwald), Aina (Anna Katrina Zulueta-Valencia) and Andrea (Andrea Claudia Zulueta-Lorenzana).

The reality of a startup business was daunting. Aside from investing money, time and effort, she had to deal with the challenges of creating public awareness of its existence; juggling business and family life and handling the employees. As the business stabilized, some stylists were pirated by a competitor in the same neighborhood.

In 1995, LZF bravely opened Piandré on 60 Timog Avenue despite cynics who assumed that there was either no market in Quezon City or that it would be eclipsed by the commercial establishments overcrowding the area. On the contrary, the salon thrived until their landlord sold the building where they stayed. When Piandré moved to a location in a quiet neighborhood, sales dipped. To make things worse, the top stylists established their own salon and brought their clients with them. LZF tried to lure Piandré’s former clients by sending chocolates to remind them that it was business as usual.
“It has been a long hard climb,” she says. Running a salon takes vision, organizational talent and discipline to coordinate the operation of a set of mini-ventures in one roof. Through the years, LZF’s sense of purpose, business discipline and strong ethos spurred the growth of the chain.

LZF Building

Piandré's flagship branch along Timog Avenue is making a bid to be a hot spot for Quezon City’s affluent market.

The five-level building not only holds the biggest Piandré salon—all of 600 sqm—among the 12 branches but it also includes a ballroom for 280 people; conference facilities for 100, meeting rooms, an art gallery, and a roofdeck for special events.

Founder and CEO Rosalinda “Linda” Zamora Francisco purchased the property and put up the edifice as a consolidation of years of Piandré experience. The LZF building, named after the owner’s initials, was built with the star team—architect Carmelo Casas, contractor Pablo Calma and interior designer Sofia Ojeda Llige.

Although it was originally designed as the flagship of the chain, Casas suggested to take advantage of the location by adding more floors to accommodate the new businesses.

The Silver Lotus Ballroom holds sentimental value for LZF. It was named silver because the groundbreaking was held on Piandré’s silver anniversary last 2012. The lotus, the flower that remains unstained above muddy waters, symbolizes victory over difficult circumstances.
LZF Building along Timog Avenue, Quezon City

References:
"Salon chain gives first franchise to employees" cooperative" by Marge C. Enriquez
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