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PLDT SME Nation, in partnership with Go Negosyo, recently unveiled the 2011 Bossing Ako campaign aimed to empower and encourage Filipinos to be their own bossings by venturing into negosyo. The campaign is also our tribute to the SME Bossings, whom we consider modern-day heroes of entrepreneurship.
Let me share with you this year’s roster of SME Bossings whose contributions to entrepreneurship have touched the lives of thousands of Filipinos.
The inspiring entrepreneur leading the Bossing Ako campaign is Cecilio Pedro, bossing of the Lamoiyan Corporation. Success didn’t come easy for Cecilio, but his entrepreneurial spirit and commitment brought him to where he is now. He started out as a manufacturer of toothpaste tubes. But when the biggest toothpaste company dropped his services, Cecilio came up with a winning idea.
Cecilio saw the opportunity to manufacture his own product, and that became the birth of Hapee Toothpaste, the leading Filipino toothpaste brand in the Philippines. Cecilio still aims to grow his negosyo and make it a globally competitive Pinoy brand that will further help the Philippines prosper.
Corazon Dayro-Ong, founder of CDO Foodsphere, Inc., is considered one of the most successful bossings in the food-manufacturing industry today. She’s a devoted mother who was able to convert her hobby into a successful negosyo that has now become a household name.
She started CDO in 1975 with just two people and her desire to help bring nutrition to every Filipino home. Now, Cora has two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities, seven distribution outlets all over the country and a wide range of affordable, quality meat products that Filipinos have grown to love.
Part of being a bossing is teaching what you know and guiding others to help them achieve success. And that is exactly what Mark Ruiz and Bam Aquino have been doing for four years now as bossings of Microventures Incorporated.
In 2007, they launched their Hapinoy Program that aims to help microentrepreneurs, who are mostly women, to put up or convert a sari-sari store into a Hapinoy Community Store. Bam and Mark also devote time to training their Hapinoy entrepreneurs, giving them the know-how to develop their negosyos as well as their communities.
As a coffee lover, Steve Benitez dreamt of sharing his coffee experience from his travels with his fellow Filipinos. In 1994, he became bossing of Bo’s Coffee when he opened his first café in Cebu City. Since then, his passion has flourished into one successful coffee franchise.
Steve now has 46 outlets, and Bo’s has become one of the premier coffee places in the country. Despite his success, sharing is still his principle in running his negosyo. Steve not only promises to provide a superb coffee experience, but he’s also committed to supporting Filipino coffee farmers by brewing Philippine-grown beans at Bo’s.
Bobby and Jojo Claudio, the brothers be-hind Toby’s Sports, are perfect examples of bossings who continue to innovate to keep up with the times. They started Toby’s as small toy store in Greenhills in the ’70s. Having seen a demand for skateboards, they slowly incorporated sporting goods into their lineup. It eventually became the first sports concept store in the Philippines with 47 outlets nationwide.
For Bobby and Jojo, the key to staying in the game is to constantly improve your negosyo and not be afraid to break your own record. Showing no sign of slowing down, they turned Toby’s Sports into the biggest interactive sports superstore — Toby’s Sports Arena — adding basketball and wall-climbing services to the mix.
Henry Lim Bon Liong has always been a Go Negosyo advocate but to Filipinos, he’s also a hero for his efforts in developing hybrid rice under his company SL Agritech. Henry, who was inspired by how China solved its rice crisis, spent countless hours and plenty of resources to come up with a variety of rice that would suit the farming conditions in the Philippines.
With the development of SL-8 in 2002, Henry was able to fulfill his dream of stabilizing the food supply in the country while supporting local farmers and providing employment to more Filipinos. Today, his negosyo distributes homegrown grains all over the Philippines as well as in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.
Sarabeth Salcedo, the bossing of Baliwag Lechon, already had a perfect recipe for success but it was her intuitive approach to entrepreneurship that made her negosyo withstand the changes in the economy and the cravings of the Pinoy palate.
Founded by Dwight and Dolores Salcedo in the 1980s, Baliwag promised to deliver affordable and delicious home-style dishes to Filipino families. To further grow their negosyo, Sarabeth stayed true to that promise and worked hard to innovate. She also takes time to reach out to the market and listen to her customers’ needs. It’s no surprise why Baliwag has more than 200 outlets and counting.
The bossings of Ystilo Salon, Federico Moreno and Vina Morales, practically grew up in the glitz and glamour of showbiz. Having realized that regular people also want to be glammed up like celebrities, they opened Ystilo Salon in 1999 to offer high-quality yet affordable services.
Because of their celebrity status, one of the challenges they encountered was to let the people know they offer affordable services. By keeping their concept and approach original, Filipinos have embraced their services and style. From their first salon in Fairview, the duo now has more than 36 branches in different parts of the Philippines.
Rey and Anais Lapid of R. Lapid’s Chicharon and Barbecue are bossings who have made a trusted brand out of a classic Filipino snack through constant innovation and a great deal of attention to quality. Rey started with a small stall in Quiapo in 1974 and by 1996, R. Lapid’s has become synonymous with good-quality Filipino snacks.
Together, the father-daughter tandem applies a hands-on approach to running their negosyo. And with all their success, the two still work hard to serve good food to Filipinos as well as provide more jobs through its more than 96 outlets all over the country.
Joe Magsaysay was a normal guy who dreamt of sending his children to a good school, having a cell phone and buying a car. But he knew that the only way to achieve that was to become his own boss by starting a negosyo. Along with four partners, he put up Potato Corner, and it became the start of one of the most successful food-cart franchises in the country.
The secret to this bossing’s success is his pursuit for excellence no matter how big his negosyo has grown. That’s why Joe has continued to push for greater heights. Potato Corner now has more than 200 local branches and 10 outlets abroad.
Husband-and-wife entrepreneurs Nelson and Siu Ping Par shared the same goal of having a successful negosyo and together, they established PR Gaz Haus, the leading LPG supplier in the country today. From being an equipment supplier, PR Gaz Haus fast became a trusted LPG refilling company with four refilling plants and over 65 stores nationwide.
The couple is proud that PR Gaz is the only LPG bulk and retail company in the Philippines that delivers right to your doorstep. These bossings also take pride in providing hundreds of jobs to our fellow Filipinos.
Annabella Wisniewski may not be a household name, but her achievements as the bossing of the Raintree Group have changed the hospitality industry in the Philippines since she started her negosyo in 1996. With only two people, she founded Raintree — the company behind the Discovery properties, Momo, M Café and themed food courts in Makati like Food Park and Food Odyssey. Today, Raintree employs more than 1,000 workers.
One key to her success is her positive attitude towards challenges in life and in business. She believes that to achieve success, one must not be afraid to fail. For Annabella, failures are simply great opportunities for learning.
Contact me at email@example.com or my Joey Concepcion Facebook account. Visit www.gonegosyo.net. Watch the top-rating entrep show Go Negosyo: Kaya Mo! on GMA News TV 11 every Saturday and Sunday 8-8:30 a.m. Get daily Go Negosyo Text Tips in your mobile phone by sending GONEGO to 2910.