Saturday, September 16, 2006


Forty-three years ago, a young couple started out with meager capital and limited business experience but with a clear vision and a lot of entrepreneurial spirit.

Norberto B. Quisumbing, Jr. and his wife, Britta Bartolome-Quisumbing, clinched in 1962 the Philippines’ exclusive manufacturing and distributorship of Yamaha motorcycles and nurtured the business to become one of the longest business partnerships Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd. of Japan has around the world.

Starting out with a five-man team, the couple divided the work in the newly organized Norkis Trading Co., Inc. in Cebu..”I was in charge of operations and marketing while she handled finance, “ recalls NQ Jr., as the founder fondly called.

They worked hard and kept faith in each other’s capabilities. “I could go home only once a month,” he recalls those early years when he had to travel all over the country personally organizing Yamaha’s marketing network.”I had no formal training in finance,” Britta admits.

But her training as a classical pianist gave her a keen eye for details and a strong drive for perfection –traits that enabled her to adeptly play her complicated role of tightly monitoring the fledgling company’s financial performance and rearing her children.

Under Britta’s eagle eyes, the past 43 years has always been profitable for Norkis NQJr. Has all the reasons to be proud. “Our business grew and we have made significant contributions in the economic development of the communities where we operate.

We achieved all these despite the economic downturns and without any special perks or accommodations from the government, “ he says.Today, Norkis is one of Cebu’s leading tax payers.

For a good number of years, Norkis has been recognized by the Bureau of Customs as the top importer of the Port of Cebu, having paid duties and taxes amounting to P258 million in 2003 and P219 million in 2004.

The Norkis Group’s value-added tax (VAT) payments amounted to P552 million in 2003 and P678 million in 2004. Norkis was given the “Top Achiever Award” by the Bureau of Internal Revenue in February 2005.

There is no secret formula—it is pure and simple honest, hard work. “We delegate but never abdicate supervision,” he says.Today, Norkis’ diversified operations have over 5,000 employees with aggregate payroll, benefits and incentives of about P60 million a month. Another 5,000 derive their livelihood through its contractors and independent dealers, creating another income stream into the local economy of about P40 million a month.

The Cebu head office overseas the operation of several factories in Mandaue and Compostela. With a network of over 1, 2000 branches, dealers and service centers nationwide, it boasts of a strong market presence in every province and city throughout the country.

The hundreds of thousands of loyal Norkis customers are always assured they get personalized attention they deserve and the adequate after-sales service they need.The Norkis Group’s 34 companies are grouped into three: Norkis Holdings, Summa and Eagle.

The Norkis Group export furniture and metal carts. It has agribusiness ventures in Cebu, Bukidnon, Batangas and masbate. Norkis is also involved in metal fabrication, engineering work and real estate development.

It launched the Golden Aire line of air conditioners and recently the Legacy First, a hybrid of the highly successful Multicabs.

For all its products, competitive consumer financing packages are always available through the extensive national network of Norkis branches.

Its core business continues to be the Yamaha motorcycles, Multicabs and now the newly launched Legacy First. It has produced and sold several units of Yamaha motorcycles, which continue to enjoy strong demand.

An innovator in multi-purpose, affordable vehicles, the Norkis family shares the dream of every Filipino to have a vehicle of his own so he can be a master of his own time.


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