SM Investments Corp. (SMIC) on Wednesday said it would maintain “cautious optimism” while focusing on safety and innovation as the company moves forward in 2021.

“We maintain cautious optimism as we navigate the many uncertainties, but where we can move with flexibility and [with] less restrictions, we will proceed with expansions in the pipeline,” SMIC President and Chief Executive Officer Frederic C. DyBuncio said during the company’s virtual stockholders’ meeting on Wednesday.

The company said it would remain open to working with small businesses in “high growth potential sectors” and is continuing to look at potential candidates.

“We are always open to potential acquisitions and minority stakes fit with our objectives,” Mr. DyBuncio said.

SMIC has also developed new channels to reach its customers through different touchpoints, both online through social media platforms and through mobile phones.

Essential and nonessential products were made available via ShopSM, with SM Store’s call-to-deliver service.

SM Markets launched, which allows customers to order online for delivery or through a pick-up option. WalterMart also made expanded ordering options through call or text and pickup.

The company said these new initiatives allowed the company to provide more jobs, offering roles such as delivery personnel and personal shoppers.

The online facilities were supported by SM’s logistics businesses 2GO Group, Inc. and Airspeed Philippines, Inc.

“We continue to work hard to develop innovative online and offline delivery channels that are integrated into our business while enhancing customer service,” Mr. DyBuncio said.

Meanwhile, the company has offered its facilities to be used as vaccination sites to local government units.

Some SM malls have been converted into vaccination sites, namely those located in: Pulilan, Olongapo, Marilao, Cabanatuan, Cauayan, Tuguegarao, Masinag, San Mateo, Paranaque, Muntinlupa, Antipolo, North EDSA, Taguig, Trece Martires, Rosario, Calamba, San Pablo, Lemery, Lipa, Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod, Ormoc, Butuan, and General Santos.

On Wednesday, SMIC shares at the local bourse improved by P31 to P990, improving by 3.23% from the previous trading day. — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte