Getting Into I-Café Business
I had to search this more than one-and-a-half (1-1/2) year old blog before I wrote this article to check what I had already written about getting into the business of operating an Internet café. In the more than 300 posts in it, I did write about opening an i-café and some others but most of these articles dealt with the investment requirements, legalities and operating variables of the business. I had none about what it takes for one who would decide to operate an i-café to succeed in doing so. I say offhand that having the money, without borrowing, to invest in the i-café business does not guarantee one’s success in it.
Based on some informal data, the Internet café industry in the Philippines is already more than a dozen year old. The very first i-cafés offered to rent computers to their customers who would do the typing of the school papers and print them afterward. Online research and gaming followed much later when computers became more powerful and Internet connectivity became affordable. From a lucrative business that guaranteed the return of one’s investment in less than a year, the i-café industry of today can be described to be suffering from intense competition and excessive government regulation which should make one think twice before investing his money in the business.
In my own observation and based on data of some local government units, bankruptcy rate in the i-café business is quite high. While the number of i-cafés in a locality seems to be always on the increase, it is only because the number of those opening is higher than the ones closing. Majority of those that closed shops did so within the first six (6) months of operation.
With the above situations, you may ask why are there still so many people interested in going into i-café business and what must one have, aside from having the capital, in order to succeed in the business. Instead of me coming out with answers to these questions, I wish to refer you to Getting Into Business article by Mr. Francisco Colayco at GMA News.TV where you can find some really good suggestions on how to successfully start and operate a business. The article has general discussion about getting into business but of its contents apply to i-café owners as well.