The Direct Selling Association of the Philippines started in the late 1970's with only 7 companies composed of Encyclopedia Brittanica Phils., Gioielli International, Inc., Felta Book Sales, Mondragon Industries, Time Life Books, Avon Cosmetics, Inc., and Phoenix Educational Systems, Inc.
In 1983, it was officially registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Among the incorporators were Consolacion Rogacion, Jose Mari Franco, Jose Antonio Gonzales, Delfin Campos Jr., Emmanuel Sibal, Felicito Abiva, and Macario Borromeo.
Currently, the DSAP has a total membership base of 26 companies with more than 2 million direct sellers and network marketers nationwide. The associations main thrust at present is to create more awareness about the endless opportunities present in the industry, promote entrepreneurship, and enhance the image of direct selling.
The members of the DSAP have engaged in a number of projects since it started. In 1998, the first week of September was declared as "Direct Selling Week" through Presidential Proclamation No. 6. Every year, recognition is given to the industrys top achievers through the Annual Industry Awards.
In the early 90s, DSAP established a close working relationship with the Department of Trade and Industry. It has participated in the deliberation and hearings for the Consumer Code, assisted in the drafting of the Administrative Order No. 8 regarding pyramiding, organized the Tri-sectoral Conference and Asia Paciifc Economic Cooperation Consumer Education and Protection Initiative (APEC-CEPI) together with the Philippine Marketing Association (PMA) and World Federation of Direct Selling Associations (WFDSA), offered support by reviewing and evaluating the compensation plans of other direct selling companies, and carried out the joint Anti-pyramiding Education Campaign.
In 2001, it was nominated to be a member of the National Consumer Affairs Council. It has also worked closely with other government agencies such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), and the Bureau of Food and Drugs (BFAD).
The DSAP also opened its doors to academic linkages like the professorial chair at the Centro Escolar University and the 3-unit, full semester Network Marketing and Direct Selling Course at the Ateneo and De La Salle universities. A 2-day Certificate Course in Direct Selling and Network Marketing was also organized in partnership with De La Salle University.
The association also believes in taking a proactive stand by educating the public about direct selling through the Management Conference and Direct Selling Congress. As public service to its members, speakers from related fields are invited to help them benchmark against other industries.
In 2002, DSAP went online with the launch of the DSAP website www.dsap.ph. In 2003, the first DSAP Book was published featuring the success stories of the industrys top sellers. And in 2004, the first-ever Direct Selling Trade Fair was also introduced showcasing the different business opportunities present in direct selling and highlighting the members as the companies offering legitimate business opportunities.
In 2005, the DSAP received an award from the World Federation of Direct Selling Associations (WFDSA) Innovation through Programming Contest for its Anti-pyramiding Education Campaign in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).