After thirty years, Ma'ali company realises $1 million dream
Customers walked through the doors to a bigger and better Ma'ali Company premises on Monday, as the family fulfilled a long-held dream of expanding its business after 30 years in operation.
The cost of the project, including site improvements, amounted to $1 million.
Lemauga Robert Pereira said he considered Monday’s opening a family milestone; he was especially proud that their parents could witness occasion.
"We're just very blessed that we've reached this milestone and we have our folks [here], because it's a family-oriented type of business," said the 39-year-old.
"It is our 30th year in the running, since 1989, so we're very blessed and today is like a birthday as well."
The store has 21 small departments, but specialises in watch repairs, photo alteration and printing services, cigarettes, kitchenware and basic everyday needs.
Its mission, Lemauga said, is to provide Samoa with the best quality at the lowest prices.
Lemauga said the store is a result of his parents, Anthony and Alamita Pereira's, sacrifices to create a better future for their children. He told of how his mother, now 68-years-old, "courageously" left a steady pay cheque to pursue their business.
Just like every other business, the family had challenges and have taken a long while to expand due to the different pathways Lemauga and his siblings pursued in life.
"It has not been easy, we've met a lot of challenges but now we've come back together and the three of us siblings have rejoined and we're not dominant shareholders anymore but more active, the three of us are the directors of the company."
His siblings include, Sulamanaia Benjamin, Tagaloa Tony and Nuulopa Pereira.
Lemauga said growing up in the Maali setting has influenced all of them to be business type people, always trying to save costs.
The name Ma'ali is said to come from a type of wood similar to Ifilele wood. The business name has been running in the family as far back as Lemauga's grandparents' time when they had a business of their own, a bar and restaurant.
Currently, Lemauga said they are savoring the moment before they start thinking about any more developments they would make for the store in the new future.
The new expansion of the store was designed by AV Designs Engineering, Foundation by MIB Construction and Building construction by Hill Built Ltd.