With more than 1,500 people who showed up during the event’s three-week stint, the organizers who run the company--that buys unique and authentic collectibles such as gold coins--were beyond satisfied. In fact, they found the response “absolutely amazing” and overwhelming.
“There’s so much gold here in the Philippines. I haven’t seen anything quite like it anywhere,” said Vanessa Downey, the company’s manager.
The Great Canadian Roadshow is a company formed in July 2009 when its founders—Boris Shreyberg and Terry Koutros—took their passion for antiques and collectibles on the road. It developed into a group that scours across Canadian cities, and now the Philippines, seeking unique and authentic collectibles.
During the first leg of the activity, Downey said, there were people who came in with bags and suitcases full of coins, precious metals, and silver wares. An individual even brought a piece of jewelry from an Israeli princess; others traded in old toys from Japan.
Downey and her team understand that it’s not easy to sell an item that people have attached feelings for. That is why they do not obligate people to sell unless they are absolutely sure about the transaction.
“It’s perhaps one of the things that separate us from the rest. While we encourage everyone to bring in items, whether or not they are sure about their value, we always keep it friendly and professional,” she said.
Like the man who got millions for his items, some 80 percent of the people who come in with items which they hope to exchange for cash come out a happy person.
In total, a whopping P12 million worth of antique, authentic, vintage items were bought—right there and then, during the 3-week event last October. This current leg is looking like it’s going to equal that amount if not surpass it.
When they give a certain price to an item, they don’t just say a number. They actually explain to the seller the reason behind the price they gave so that people understand better.
It’s a social event every day at The Palm Room (4th Floor) of the Richmonde Hotel, where the experts team of The Great Canadian Roadshow await individuals ready to exchange their prized possessions for cash. (There’s free admission to the event; free parking; and free coffee, too, for people who drop by in the event.)
“It’s always nice to give back to the community. Many of these people come to us wanting to exchange their items for money so they can use the latter to renovate their kitchens, send their children to school or perhaps buy a new car. It’s nice to know we have become an instrument of help for them in our own way,” she said.
Because of the success of the first two exhibitions, the team are already planning the next leg in the country, perhaps early next year.
Downey said: “Filipinos are just friendly, they understand what we say. We enjoy our time here and we believe there are so much more to explore and collect in this beautiful country. We will definitely be coming back, no doubt.”
Visit www.thegreatcanadianroadshow.com for more information.
*** Editor's Note: This article first appeared on the Philippine Daily Inquirer on November 12, 2012. Article is slightly edited for TWIST. Enjoy! :) ***