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Filipino values decree that family is important, and it’s very significant to me. My family has been one of the essential factors why I strive to do things. Through good and hard times in managing our negosyo, my family has been my strength and inspiration.
It is motivating to find out that I share the same family-oriented principles with other institutions. BPI Family Savings Bank, which is one of Go Negosyo’s partners, commits to assist Filipinos in their business endeavors. Through its BPIF Ka-Negosyo Loan and Ka-Negosyo accreditation programs, our entrepreneurs are given the chance to maximize their opportunities and make their businesses grow.
Let me share five stories of entrepreneurs who have partnered with BPI and reached success.
Gaining An Extended Family In Business
Maria Lourdes “Malou” So used to be a working student. She possesses a warm character that easily connects with people. This was the reason why her husband Danilo noticed her, and they eventually fell in love and got married. They settled in Indonesia, where they established Sekoleh Mondial, an international school, in 2000. The school grew, and so did their success. But as their children reached their college years, Malou and Danilo decided to go back to the Philippines and start anew.
She opened a business as a franchisee of Bar-B-King in Dasmarinas, Cavite, in February 2012. They encountered a lot of problems because they were not used to the system of putting up a business in the country, and they have been swindled a couple of times. However, Malou always believed that God would give them the right people. And she was right. As she begins to reap success in her new venture, Malou expressed that she did not only gain in terms of income, but she also gained an extended family through her 22 employees and the people from BPI, who treated her as more than a client.
The Family That Works Together Succeeds Together
Prior to establishing Cagayan Appliance Center, 41-year-old Ronnel P. Foronda from Solana, Cagayan, used to be an employee in an established chain of appliance stores, while his wife Olivia started a sari-sari store in their rented apartment. During his stint as a store manager, he realized that if he could grow his employer’s business, he could also manage a business of his own. From a meager capital of P130,000 and a 4×4–meter stall in 1997, the couple started their own appliance business.
After years of diligence, Ronnel and Olivia were able to expand Cagayan Appliance Center to 13 stores across Cagayan. They did not achieve this without encountering hardships, especially while they were expanding. Blessings came their way in the form of low interest rates offered by BPI, which helped them get through the tough times.
DTI and the Philippine Retailers Association recognized the couple as a finalist in their nationwide search for the Most Outstanding Filipino Retailers in the appliance category. This feat proves what they have reached as they celebrate their business’ 15th anniversary this year.
Inspired By Love Of Family
Their growing family is the reason why Nilo and Rose Marie delos Reyes of Bulacan established New Dampa sa Magdaragat, which is a seafood restaurant with two branches and 45 employees. They already had an idea in the food industry before, as this was their second negosyo since they started in 2000.
Love for their growing brood inspired Nilo and Rose Marie to take on the challenges of being entrepreneurs, and with their passion and courage, they opened their second branch in Dasmarinas, Cavite. Soon, they will go nationwide by branching out to Puerto Galera and Boracay.
Rose Marie recalled that having a family business is not just about earning a good profit. It is also about teaching their children how to manage a business properly, and how to deal with different people. BPI helped them achieve their success because they understood the needs of starting entrepreneurs like them.
Unexpected Family Success
Another inspiring story is of Fiona Hilario and her family, who started LayBare Waxing Salon in 2006. It was a business concept that they did not plan at all, but its unexpected success changed their lives. She recalled that they had to sacrifice a lot at first, but their positive attitude pushed them through.
Fiona is aware that success will take time. With dedication and two employees at first, LayBare has grown to 37 branches and 50 employees in just six years. BPI is the first bank that extended a loan to them for expansion purposes, as they have an excellent track record in partnering with SMEs. Now LayBare is ready to expand beyond Metro Manila this year.
Mixing Business With The Family’s Interest
Maritel Nievera of Cabalen was born to a family that loves cooking. That is why as soon as she finished her education, she opened her own small restaurant. But she felt that she could take it further by capitalizing on what she already knew and infusing innovation into it. Maritel opened Cabalen, which took her native Pampanga’s name to the mainstream restaurant scene. Twenty-five years later, it is still known as one of the best places in town to eat good food “buffet style,” but at a fraction of the cost.
BPI has been with Maritel from day one, and was always at her back when she needed capital in expanding her business. Last March, she was awarded as one of Go Negosyo’s Women Starpreneurs, and was also recognized by BPI as this year’s Business Excellence awardee.
We always say during our Negosems that trust is the capital of any business. It is therefore important to keep cordial relations with the people and institutions in and around your negosyo. Institutions like BPI Family can assist us in our business needs, and in turn, we can even gain a family while working with them towards our success.