33 Point 3 Exports, Inc. was established in 1990 in the island of Cebu, the center and focal point of the export industry in the Philippines. Originally a manufacturer of Fashion Accessories, the company began exporting its goods to several buyers from Japan, Europe, and USA. With the boom of the Export Fashion Accessories Industry during the mid 90’s, the company too saw a consistent increase of business turnover every year, which prompted 33 Point 3 to continue its aggressive stride in product development. But it wasn’t until 1999 that the company saw its biggest change yet.
The Growth of Housewares
1999 was the greatest turning point in 33 Point 3’s history and paved the way to what the company is today. In this year, the company made the ultimate gamble in investing and developing a new type of weaving never seen before in the market. The Hapao Weave, primarily made our of Rattan, was normally seen as souvenir items in tourist spots in the Philippines, specifically in the island of Bohol where the item is rampant.
The company then tapped into this source and developed the Hapao Weave into large baskets for functionality. With 33 Point 3’s continued efforts into developing this weave, the 1st containers were shipped by early 2000, and the Houseware (or Handicrafts) Sector of the company was born.
With the success of the Hapao Weave, 33 Point 3 continues to expand its current Houseware collection with different shapes and weaves. With its ever-proactive Product Development Team, 33 Point 3 ensures that it stays relevant with the needs of its current and new clients. And with the demand of the market ever growing, the company has taken recent steps to add another sector to its collections: Furniture. And with the proof that the Hapao Weave can live up to any client’s expectations, there’s no better baseline the company should use to expand into the Export Furniture Industry.
From the start, the company's principle has been to produce high quality products that are made of indigenous materials ranging from rattan, buri, nito, lampakanay, to shells, coconut, wood, plant, fibers, carabao horn and bone, as well as articles using plated base metals combined with synthetic gemstone, plastics, textiles and a variety of natural materials. Quality, professionalism service orientation and good relationships are fundamental to the company’s operations.
Although a very disciplined businesswoman, Mrs. Cruz is also a very prudent and caring person. One of her main principles is to care and give back to the community. From the start of 33 Point 3, Mrs. Cruz has provided opportunities to thousands of families through basket weaving. These families come from Cebu, Bohol, Siquijor, and even as far as Butuan and Pangasinan. Because of basket weaving, people from these rural areas are now able to put food on their tables and send their kids to school. Due to her valiant efforts, more and more people are slowly able to live a comfortable life that they have wished for since so long ago.
Mrs. Cruz continually pushes herself and the company to greater heights, but has not forget the people who have helped her through the years. In her own words, “Hindi na puwede ang puwede na. Complacency is sometimes harmful to our health and well-being.”
Maribelle F. Cruz was born on June 4, 1962. She lives with her 4 children: Jotham, Jeric, John, and Joan; her 4 grand-children: Jyrene, Jose, Jeanine, and Marybelle; and her 2 daughters-in-law: Rhea and Donna.