Page 1







Singer-actress KARYLLE hits the right notes with her booming KTV business Take advantage of DTI’s ONE TOWN ONE PRODUCT PROGRAM




Super inventor NARCISO MOSUELA Cutflower exporter LLORA REYES Sardines producer MARITES UY

©2007 Globe Telecom, Inc.



COVER: MASIGASIG AWARDS 2008 Get to know this year's winners





Joy de Villa exports personalcare products to Korea, with Europe not far behind

Karylle discovers her entrepreneurial skills with a classy karaoke bar



Charming Bacolod City offers many unexpected returns



5High Tech 8Helpline 12Hot Negosyo 19Batang Negosyante 25Trivia & Round Up Jaclyn Lutanco-Chua Sunshine Selga Cecile Baltasar Dino de Ocampo Jonas Asistio

Editor-in-Chief Managing Editor Associate Editor Art Director Contributing Shoot Director

Gay Ace Domingo Jonathan Rickard Mari-An Santos Ray Andallon Jr. Robert John Oh Bubbles Salvador Bridget Ng-Ting Abby Yao Mabel Pilar


Vincent Coscolluela Jun Pinzon Jervy Santiago Dakila Angeles Olet Ferrer


Archie Tolentino Audie Bermejo A.B. Paredes Jeng Flores Carlan Teng

Makeup Artists

Junn delas Alas Dondi Limgenco

Project Managers

Globe Advisory Team Ailene Averion, Aldwin Co, Cielo Javier-Sonza, Alain Sebastian, Michelle Perlas, Barby Coronel

ma•si•ga•sig – determined, persistent or motivated, with a strong sense of direction in terms of goals to be achieved.

EDITOR’S NOTE Whoever said you needed to be a spry twenty-something to have the energy to put up a successful business should take lessons from Narciso Mosuela, one of our cover story subjects for this issue, and recipient of the Outstanding Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Award in the recent Masigasig Awards. Tata Ciso invented his star product—the Super Kalan—when he was 45; formed his own company when he was in his sixties; and today, already in his 70s, he has amassed too many entrepreneurship awards to count. Even more amazing is his dogged determination to make the best product possible, working on his kalan even when people where calling him “scientist na sira” and his product “Super Kalawang.” Not even poverty and the lack of a high school degree hindered his ambitions one bit. Now that’s being masigasig. People like Tata Ciso are the reason we have this magazine; our goal is not just to feature success stories, but to feature successful people as well. We don’t just look for how much they have made, we look for how they got to where they are. Finally, we don’t just look for inspiration, we aim for empowerment. So to all those entrepreneurs out there who say they are too young, too old, too poor, too insulted, too stuck-in-a-rut, or too tired to start or grow their business—this issue is for you.

Jaclyn Lutanco-Chua Editor-in-Chief We at Globe Business are privileged to feature the winners of our first ever Masigasig Awards, an awards program that recognizes the exceptional performance of Filipino entrepreneurs. This award is part of the three-year partnership we recently inked with the Department of Trade and Industry, a relationship geared towards improving the Micro, Small and Medium enterprise (MSME) landscape in the Philippines. DTI has become an important partner for Globe as the agency’s goals coincide with the company’s schema to empower Filipinos who want to establish their own businesses. Whether it’s offering the best products possible with our line of data and voice service packages or inspiring start-up entrepreneurs with this magazine, you can be assured that with Globe, your needs always come first. So write to us! Let us know how Globe and Masigasig has helped you, or how we can help you better with our products and services. After all, just like entrepreneurs, we’re always looking for ways to improve ourselves.

Maridol Ylanan Head-Corporate & SME Segments

Call the Globe Business Hotline at 730-1288 or 1-800-8-730 1288 for inquiries on Globe products and services, or visit any Globe Business Center or Globelines Payments and Services Center. ●

For inquiries, comments or suggestions on Masigasig magazine, e-mail or text Masigasig<space>your feedback <space> your name send to 2344. P2.50/text. You can also visit ●

A special publication made by Summit Media for Globe Telecom. For special publication inquiries, please call 451-8888.



HOME-BASED BUSINESS IDEAS Hi, Masigasig! I would like to go into the business of making dried mangoes, but don’t know where I can go for training or look for suppliers. Can you give me some leads? Thank you so much for your assistance.

Dried mangoes are a good business to get into; the demand abroad—from countries like the United States, China, Japan, Italy, and Canada—far outstrips supply, so there is always room for more players. Plus, Philippine mangoes are considered one of the best in the world, so you should have no problem marketing yourself. One thing you should be aware of, though: it’s not easy to export products abroad, especially food, because of strict laws in manufacturing, packaging, and even labeling. So you need to make sure that your entire production process from the get-go is in sync with international standards. That said, there are many government and non-government agencies that you can tap to develop this business endeavor. First and foremost, I would recommend that you contact the Department of Trade and Industry ( Not only are they mandated by law to assist SMEs, they are also one of the most helpful and efficient government agencies we have. Projects like their One Town One Product (or OTOP, which is featured prominently in this issue) are a big help to micro entrepreneurs looking for support in terms of product development, marketing, and funding. Just get in touch with the provincial or regional branch nearest you (we published a directory of their regional offices in our Helpline section this month), and 4 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

Marketing Bureau of Export Trade Promotion 5F/8F New Solid Bldg. 357 Sen. Gil Puyat Ave., Makati City E-mail: Bureau of Domestic Trade 2F Trade and Industry Bldg. 361 Sen. Gil Puyat Ave., Makati City E-mail:

Sincerely, EDSEL RAMIREZ 0917-5255487

Dear Edsel,

Human Resource Development Entrepreneurship Training Philippine Trade and Training Center PTTC Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City E-mail:

DTI should be able to put you in touch with institutions that can provide various assistances. Some of these are: Skills Training Cottage Industry Technology Center 20 Russet St., SSS Village, Marikina City E-mail: Technical Education and Skills Development Authority TESDA Complex, East Service Road South Super Highway, Taguig E-mail: Technology Resource Center TRC Building (formerly ELT Center), 103 J. Abad Santos cor. Lopez Jaena Sts., Little Baguio, San Juan City Website: Product Development Product Development and Design Center of the Philippines CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City E-mail: Department of Science and Technology DOST Bldg. Gen. Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig Website:

The DTI also hosts regular trade fairs where you not only meet potential buyers, but suppliers as well. You might even get to meet and exhange notes with other entrepreneurs who are in the dried mangoes business. Finally—and this is just a suggestion—you may also want to consider producing other mango by products. Purees, jams, juices, and even the fresh fruit itself are equally sought after in other countries. If I’m not mistaken, the equipment to make these and dried mangoes are pretty similar, or the technique the same. Of course, remember to make sure you follow regulations and secure the necessary permits from the Bureau of Food and Drug Authority. In the meantime, continue reading Masigasig so that you can pick up more tips and insights—not just about the mango industry, but also about doing business in general. We might also just come out with a story on a dried mangoes producer issues soon, so watch out for that! Regards, Jaclyn Editor-in-chief

Do you have any questions about your business that you think Masigasig can answer? Write to us at and be our next letter sender of the month! Include your full name, name of business, contact number and e-mail address. The chosen letter sender will win premium Globe items! The winner will be notified via e-mail and will receive a call from Masigasig.


ESSENTIAL EQUIPMENT FOR EVERY ENTREPRENEUR Whether you are running a one-man operation or employ a number of personnel, these gadgets will be your tools for success B Y R O B E R T J O H N O H


unning a business requires some tools for communication and office productivity. Fortunately, advances in technology have made them inexpensive to acquire. Here are the basic must-haves:


LANDLINE. Landline still remains the number-one means for local

business communications, according to a report published in 2006 by Siemens Insight Consulting. Globe landlines offer value-added services such as caller ID and callerwaiting ID. These allow you to note all incoming calls even if you miss them. Other value-added features include callforwarding (where, if you turn your phone off or are at a place where there is no signal, another number can receive incoming calls), voice mail (where people can leave you a recorded message in case you can’t pick up the phone), and 3-way calling (where three people can talk to each other at the same time on one call). Globe also allows you to choose special numbers so you can personalize your contact number to make it easier to remember for customers.

A simple but efficient office set-up



Internet cards may seem inexpensive but nothing beats broadband in terms of speed, unlimited access, and multiple-user sharing. In areas where broadband may not be available, consider using Globe Visibility. Globe Visibility comes with a pocket-size modem that connects to the USB port of your computer. It provides fast Internet connection wherever there is a Globe signal available. Globe also provides landline packages that come bundled with broadband access. Starting at 995 per month, you get a landline bundled with unlimited Internet connection.

Technology lets you do things faster and at lower cost, so let it be your tool for success.


MOBILE PHONE. Before, mobile phones were used only to

make calls and send and receive text messages. Now, however, they are like mini-computers, with loads of features that allow them to perform a variety of functions. Some features that are handy for business include organizer, document viewer, and Internet and e-mail capability. In choosing between a postpaid and prepaid line, postpaid provides more value since you won’t have to worry about running out of load or credit. You will receive a bill every month for the messages you sent and the calls you made and that’s the time you pay up. Globe has a variety of postpaid plans that cater to different needs—from businessmen who prefer voice calls than text messages to those who want to give their employees and staff their own postpaid lines.


COMPUTER. You will need a computer for data processing.

An entry level computer desktop costing 15,000 should be good enough for creating documents and brochures, doing spreadsheet computations, sending and receiving e-mails and browsing the Internet. Higher end desktops are needed for more extensive requirements such as graphic designs and video editing. If your work requires you to be in the field, a laptop would be the right choice. A good laptop that has the features of a desktop computer would cost about 35,000. For the software, at the very least, you will need an operating system as well as an Office suite that includes word-processing, spreadsheet and presentation software. Branded computers normally come with a software bundle. So in making price comparisons, don’t forget to calculate the cost of the software that comes with the computer. Avail of Globe’s PC Bundle, which comes with Internet connection, landline service, and your very own desktop PC. For those always on the go, there’sthe Globe Mobility Bundle, which is a special Globe Visibility subscription (see next item) packaged with a laptop.


FAX MACHINE. A fax machine is a device used

to transfer copies (facsimiles) of documents through the telephone network. Fax machine technology comes in two types: plain paper or thermal. Plain-paper fax machines print using regular copy paper but require an ink cartridge. Thermal fax machines use special fax paper but do not require ink. Prints in fax paper tend to fade over time. If you intend to keep copies of fax documents for a long time, plain paper fax machines are the better alternative.


PRINTER. You will need a printer to print

documents. Printers come in three types: dot matrix, inkjet, and laser. Dot matrix uses a black ribbon for printing. It is popular for printing invoices due to the low cost of the ribbon and the choice to use carbon paper for multiple copies. An inkjet printer uses liquid ink. They are very affordable, with entry-level models starting at 2,000. Inkjets are recommended for printing colored documents. Laser printers provide professional quality printouts. These printers use toner (ink in powder form) that lasts for approximately 2,000 copies. An entry-level laser printer costs from 4,500 and up. A laser printer is recommended for black-and-white printing, as well as for fast printing of multiple copies. These days, the mantra of consumers is no longer "Who can give me the best product?" but "Who can give me the best product first and at the most affordable price?" Technology lets you Robert John Oh is Managing do things faster and at lower Partner of Quantum X, a web design and web applications cost, so let it be your tool for development company. success. ● OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 5

The Bacolod plaza bandstand is the center of most cultural activities

Architect Leandro Locsin supposedly considers Bacolod’s Capitol building the most beautiful capitol building in the country

The San Sebastian Cathedral is Bacolod’s hub of religious activity

BACOLOD Once a monocrop industry of sugar, this city now boasts of alternative sources of livelihood and income BY








Casino Filipino is a natural lair for foreigners


here are a lot of reasons to smile about in Bacolod these days. One: the city is celebrating its 27th annual Masskara Festival this month. For two weeks, the main thoroughfares will host sports competitions, cultural shows, trade fairs, beauty pageants, and of course, the famous Masskara Dance Parade, where masked dancers display their gracefulness and stamina. It draws in hordes of visitors—both local and foreign—which translates to big revenues for the businesses in the city. But there’s another cause for celebration for Negros Occidental’s capital city, which has always been known as “the Sugar Capital of the Philippines:” Bacolod is now breaking out of that label and finding its footing with domestic investments and rising number of small and medium enterprises. Business is booming in Bacolod, and its economy has never been this good.


In 1985, because of an excess in sugar in the world market, the province of Negros suffered an economic crisis. Prices of sugar plunged because supply outweighed demand, and thousands of people were laid off as a result. This left a lasting effect in the province which had, until then, depended solely on 6 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

Bob’s is credited for turning Bacolod into a coffee city

sugar production for its income. To cope, then governor Daniel Lacson challenged the wives of Negros’ sugar plantation laborers to come up with alternative means of income. And the housewives did, making handbags using indigenous materials and selling them to other locals. In 1998, This group of 15 homemakers plus 32 other producers became the first members of a non-profit organization—the Association of Negros Producers, Inc. (ANP). Now boasting of over 200 member SMEs with 80 active exhibitors, ANP is recognized by the Department of Trade and Industry and the Canadian International Development Agency as a business-service

Local chicken inasal house Mang Inasal

CONTACT DETAILS Bacolod Business Development and Promotion Center ARDIS A. JACULINA City Administrator ROGELIO BALO, Ph.D Association of Negros Producers, Inc. MARY ANNE COLMENARES, President ANP Showroom Lourdes-C Building 9th cor. Lacson Sts., Bacolod City

provider, making it the center of SMEs in Bacolod. Presently, 25 percent of ANP’s producers are exporters as well. These products—from coconuthusk picture frames and candle holders to wooden lamps and clothes—are distributed in Europe, the United States, Japan, Jordan, and Mexico, among others. SMEs from outside Negros are also welcome to take advantage of Bacolod’s natural resources and set up their own shops. “We only ask that our members’ production house is based in Negros, so they can keep with ANP’s goal of providing livelihood to Negrenses,” says ANP executive director Christine Abaquin. “Their other components can be based elsewhere. Our members don’t

HOT SPOTS Figaro took advantage of the captive market of SM Bacolod and opened its doors last year

Crisvil Creations’ accessories, by Cristeta Villacin, made from indigenous materials are now available at Domicillo in Greenbelt 5

Small, independent chicken inasal stalls in Manokan Country, like artist Rex Cuenca’s New Paz stall, abound in Bacolod

BabyLans Coco Crafts, owned by Rolando and Maxima Madera, makes use of coconut husks for all its home furnishing products.

have to be Negrense.” ANP members enjoy free seminars, aggressive marketing in ANP’s showroom and at trade fairs, and low-interest loans, among other privileges.

and foreign investors to bite into Bacolod’s IT chips. For instance, non-pioneer IT enterprises are given income tax holidays for the first four years; pioneer IT enterprises get a six-year holiday. Investors are also exempted from A SLEW OF INVESTMENTS paying import duties and taxes on imported When SM Bacolod opened its doors in 2006, machinery, equipment, and raw materials. locals treated it as an informal sign that Bacolod The city is also gearing up its locals for the had arrived. True enough, investors—both onslaught of IT investments. To provide ready local and foreign—ushered in. Manila-based and able employment to IT investors, which are franchises like coffee shop Figaro was one of the mainly call center companies, three TESDAfirst to open there, while call center companies accredited training programs have been set like Convergys began operations. There are up—two for call centers and one for medical now eight call center companies in Bacolod, in transcription services. addition to eight IT parks and eco-zones. With “To cope with all the new investments in this boost, there is great demand for SMEs in the Bacolod, as well as those migrating to the city, hospitality and transportation sectors. we’ve had to build more hotels and put up six Bacolod’s investments and sales have been more traffic lights in the downtown area alone,” steadily going up since 2004. Two years ago, says City Administrator Rogelio Balo, Ph.D. gross business sales in the city was at P26 billion, This is a major development for the city with with at least 500 million in investments; last only half a million population. “Investors pick us year, sales went up to 29 billion, with total because they see that we are a peaceful people. investments at 700 million. Our crime solution efficiency is 99.6 percent,” Dr. Balo adds. “The weather is good most of ROOM FOR NEW PLAYERS the time. We have less traffic than in the more The boom in IT businesses has triggered the populated cities. Bacolod is accessible by air, local government to entice more domestic land, and sea. The people here are genuinely warm and educated—Bacolod’s literacy rate is 93.9 percent.” The Association Bacolod’s real estate prices are also reasonable prices—rent for of Negros a warehouse is 50 to 100 per Producers, Inc. is square meter; rent for a ground rd coming to Manila! Their 23 Annual Negros floor office space is 200 to 300 per square meter; and a third floor Trade Fair will be from Sept. 30 to Oct. 5 at office space can be rented for as the Rockwell tent in Makati. low as 50 per square meter.



Production for Tata Jarvis’ Jarvis Gourmet Foods began on a corner table in her kitchen. This month, she is coming out with Organic red rice with malunggay chips


Little wonder, then, that in 2007, Bacolod was chosen by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry as the Most Business Friendly City in the Philippines because of strong ties between the government and private sector. In the same year, Bacolod was also voted as the best place to live in in the Philippines, according to a survey done by the Asian Institute of Management. “Now, we’re exploring adventure tourism and organic products to add to our roster,” says ANP President Mary Anne Colmenares. Indeed, with all these developments, there’s nowhere for Bacolod to go but up. ● OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 7


Cash In on

OTOPportunity The DTI’s ONE TOWN ONE PRODUCT program can give your business all the support it needs to reach wider markets B Y J O N A T H A N R I C K A R


Cornik (fried corn snacks) from Paoay, Ilocos Norte comes in different flavors: cheese, barbecue, sweet & spicy, and adobo.


stablished in 2004, One Town One Product-Philippines (OTOP-Philippines) is a nationwide program conceptualized and implemented to promote entrepreneurship and create jobs.

Through OTOP, local chief executives of each city and municipality take the lead in identifying, developing, and promoting a specific product or service, which has a competitive advantage. Once a business is identified as an OTOP, the Department of Trade and Industry can help the entrepreneur improve his product design and packaging, introduce him to new technology, find financial backing, and promote the business to wider markets. OTOP is modeled on similar successful programs in Japan and Thailand, and has been responsible for bringing an array of quality Filipino products to domestic and international markets. One such example is Ilocos Norte’s “cornik,” a deep-fried corn-kernel delicacy. Through the assistance of the OTOP program, the eight-member Paoay Chichacorn Producers Association was able to tap markets in Cyprus, Australia, and Saudi Arabia, registering export sales of US$14,500 in 2006. This was on top of domestic sales of 14.055 million, DTI regional director Florante O. Leal said. In 2006, overall total sales from the exports of OTOP products amounted to $28.21 million for the same period, while domestic sales totaled 895.64 million. Investments in the OTOP products reached 752.526 million. So how can an entrepreneur avail of OTOP’s resources? How much will it cost, and what if your town already has a registered OTOP product that’s different from your business? Marilou Matabuena, a consultant of the Department of Trade and Industry’s OTOP Program Management Office, answers these questions—and more: How can an entrepreneur get involved in the OTOP program? Can anybody just apply? The OTOP program targets small and medium enterprises, meaning businesses with an asset size of not more than 100 million. “Just call the DTI office in your area, and we will be happy to discuss options with you,” Marilou says. (See sidebar for the full directory of regional OTOP Program Management Offices.) How much will it cost me to link with OTOP? “None.” The DTI is mandated by law to assist SMEs. 8 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

Rattan furniture is the OTOP of many towns in Nueva Ecija and San Luis in Agusan del Sur

HELP LINE What can OTOP actually do for my business? OTOP works by looking at the resources available in a location, then helping local entrepreneurs add value to those products. “For example, if you have a banana farm, don’t just sell bananas as is—make something out of it, like banana chips. If you are fishing for tuna, make tuna sausages or tuna kikiam.” Marilou advises. “This way, entrepreneurs become manufacturers of higher-level products rather than merely supplying raw materials to others who create products for a wider market.”

How can OTOP help market the products? Through the DTI, entrepreneurs can join various regional and national trade fairs, which have been proven to generate a lot of sales. “But we try to also coach the entrepreneurs in other forms of marketing, especially if they are new. We assist in packaging and labeling, especially for food and beverages, so that they reach international packaging standards,” Marilou shares.

Gasan in Marinduque produces and markets live and deadstock butterflies

Once another town registers a product as OTOP, say bananas, does that mean my town can’t register our own bananas anymore? Not at all. There are similar OTOPs all over the country. Iloilo, Camarines, and Laguna, for example, have pineapple products as their OTOP.

But isn’t it complicated to create these value-added products? “We know that the logistics are very difficult, especially if you are just starting,” Marilou acknowledges. “But we can give you assistance in terms of the capability to develop that.” For example, OTOP can link Cutflowers are promoted entrepreneurs not just with the full in the towns of Capiz and Zamboanga del Sur resource of the DTI, but also with other government agencies like the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) for skills training. They can also refer you to the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), who can assist would-be entrepreneurs in research and even loan them equipment. “The DOST has a loan program where you can buy the equipment without having to pay for the first three years!” Marilou shares.

F O R M O RE I N F O R M A T I O N: Fernando, La Union E-mail:

NCR (National Capital Region) 12/F Trafalgar Plaza 105 HV Dela Costa St., Makati City, Metro Manila E-mail:

Region III (Central Luzon) 2F Angeles Business Center Teresa Ave., Nepo Mart Complex, Angeles City, Pampanga E-mail:

CAR (Cordillera Administrative Region) Jesnor Bldg. 04 Carino St., Baguio City E-mail:

Region IVA (CALABARZON) 3F Marcelita Bldg. Barangay Real, Calamba, Laguna E-mail:

Region II (Cagayan Valley) 4F Tony Go Bldg., Luna St. cor. Burgos St., Tuguegarao, Cagayan E-mail:

Region IVB (MIMAROPA) 5F Oppen Bldg., 349 Sen. Gil Puyat Ave., Makati City E-mail:

“Once you’re enrolled in the OTOP program, we can help take your business to greater heights,” promises Marilou. ●

A One Town One Product-Philippines (OTOP-Philippines) Directory

OTOP Program Management Office DTI Regional Operations Group Head Office G/F New Solid Bldg. 357 Sen. Gil Puyat Avenue, Makati City, Metro Manila E-mail:

Region I (Ilocos Region) 4/F Juanita Commercial Bldg., Quezon Avenue, San

What if my town’s OTOP is abaca, but I’m confident that my coffee business will also do well? Do I have to move to another town? “No, you can still work with a different product,” Marilou assures. After all, if one location has more than one strength or abundance, who is OTOP to insist that only one be developed? “OTOP is here to create added value with whatever products there are,” she adds. In fact, not all OTOP entrepreneurs have to be engaged in manufacturing. For example, in the university town of Dumaguete, the OTOP is education; in Batangas and Zamboanga del Norte, it’s eco-tourism.

Region V (Bicol Region) Jomil Bldg., Georgetown Park Rizal St., Cabangan, Legaspi City E-mail: Region VI (Western Visayas) 3F DTI Bldg. JM Basa St. cor. Peralta St., Iloilo City E-mail: Region VII (Central Visayas) 3F Rm 311 WDC Bldg. Osmeña Blvd. cor. Burgos St., Cebu City E-mail: Region VIII (Eastern Visayas) NACIDA Bldg. Govt. Center Pawing, Palo, Leyte E-mail: Region IX (Zamboanga Peninsula) Governor Ramos Ave.,

Sta. Maria, Zamboanga City E-mail: Region X (Northern Mindanao) NACIDA Bldg. Luna St. cor. Corrales St., Cagayan de Oro City, Cagayan de Oro E-mail: Region XI (Davao Region) 3F Mintrade Bldg. Monteverde St. cor. Sales St., Davao City, Davao E-mail: Region XII (SOCCSKSARGEN) 4F De Luz Bldg. Aquino St. FAD loc. 15 cor. Gensan Drive, Koronadal City E-mail: Region XIII (CARAGA Region) 764 Silaga Bldg. Capitol Ave., Butuan City E-mail: OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 9

KARYLLE: “With [my business partners], I see how much they study the business, enough to know na it’s a calculated risk. Being around people like that makes me feel more confident, that I can also make an educated decision.”

Taking CenterStage

Singer and TV personality KARYLLE bravely steps into the world of business with a family KTV and restaurant bar, and hits all the right notes



f you had told KARYLLE TATLONGHARI more than a year ago that she would be putting a large sum of her money into a business venture, she wouldn’t have believed you. She could hardly believe it herself. “I’m just a money-in-the-bank kind of person,” she says, which is characteristically unlike her boyfriend and business partner, actor DINGDONG DANTES. “Siya, his money is always out—in his businesses, stocks, investments. He’s very business-minded.” In fact, when the couple found out last year from their family friends Marivi Garcia and the Go family that they were setting up CENTERSTAGE, a family KTV and restaurant bar on Timog Ave., Quezon City, it was Dingdong who immediately asked if he and Karylle could become part-owners. “Honestly, I was so scared,” admits Karylle. “But it CONTACT DETAILS: came at a time when people my age were already CenterStage opening their own stores, investing in stocks, getting Timog Branch 2/F CTTM Square, Timog Ave. corner promoted. Of course, I had something to show for, but Tomas Morato, Quezon City I wanted something more that was connected to why I Jupiter Branch went to school.” So the Communication Technology 5/F Jupiter Place, 136-138 Jupiter Management graduate from the Ateneo, after being Street, Bel-Air, Makati City Website: told that there was room for her and Dingdong in CenterStage, “finally became brave enough” to step out of her financial comfort zone and into the business arena. 10 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

CELEBRITY RAKETS CenterStage’s interiors make you feel like you’re at a kabarkada’s home

Yummy food at affordable prices

Classy designs greet customers at the lobby

The billiard table at CenterStage Makati’s Presidential Room


“Don’t be afraid to ask questions,” says Karylle, of what she learned starting out with CenterStage. She imbibes the business acumen of her more experienced partners and learns from them. “With [my business partners], I see how much they study the business, enough to know na it’s a calculated risk. Being around people like that makes me feel more confident—that I can also make an educated decision.”

From the beginning, Karylle and Dingdong’s partners made sure to involve them in the business. Even today, Karylle says that everyone in the group has an equal say on how the CenterStage’s investors (including CONNECTING THROUGH TECH Karylle and Dingdong Dantes, 6th and business is being run. “I’m always online,” says Karylle. “When we 7th from left) pose at the opening of For example, putting her show- the Makati branch have to approve collaterals and ads, we e-mail business background to good use, Karylle it back and forth for approval.” recommended having celebrity playlists, a wall room, but it’s convertible to a videoke after. Jackson adds, “E-mails from branch to of celebrity autographs, and a memorabilia wall That’s the main strength of that branch,” branch also save on having to physically for OPM artists. And because of Dingdong’s says Karylle. “It also has a band area; during deliver documents.” Additional promotions for and her celebrity status, generating publicity Christmas we have entire area rented out.” CenterStage come in the form of its website for their KTV-resto bar became their primary The Makati branch also does well with the (, which showcases responsibility. “When we opened on August 2007, working-types after office hours, but because its rooms, rates and latest promos; and through Dong and I were in-charge of inviting people and of its Presidential Room (a spacious room text messages. I pretty much fixed the interviews,” says Karylle. Karylle also relies on her mobile phone when good for up to 50 people, witha billiard table Consequently, with such a visible showbiz and a piano), Karylle says, “We try to push the it comes to handling reservations. “A lot go couple as its co-owners, CenterStage enjoys barkada packages and promo packages.” through me. They always call or text to make a steady stream of celebrity clients and TV The promos appear to be working. Though sure confirmed yung reservation nila. Sometimes coverage. The establishment is often used as CenterStage Makati has been in business for just a people like to text when they reserve a room or venue for many press conferences and Karylle few months, business partner Jackson Go reveals if they’re going to be late or something. Parang sees to it that they are constantly featured in that its growth is comparable to the Quezon for them, it’s a more personal reservation; they TV shows. Last August, the group opened their City branch when it was starting. “Every week, it just want to be reassured na kahit papaano you second branch in Makati in the space vacated grows. Weekends namin full house lagi.” really took care of them.” by old KTV place IO. For Karylle, who’s just starting to make a Already anticipating other KTV’s to sprout up with a similar look and promos as theirs, name outside show business, her venture into HITTING THEIR MARKET Jackson shares CenterStage’s game plan: “We CenterStage, she says, is part of her growth and To keep ahead of competition, Karylle and want to hold on to our customers’ loyalty, so that everything is a learning experience. company see to it that CenterStage enjoys state- we have with membership “I’m more confident of-the-art equipment, modern and custom- perks and privilege cards.” with managing my Cut your communication costs with designed interiors. “This is our niche,” Karylle finances now,” says explains. “We are well-built, well-designed, well- FISH OUT OF WATER Karylle. She says staffed, and located in prime locations.” she still thinks twice Jumping into business Both CenterStage branches, Karylle says, w i t h o u t a b u s i n e s s Now you can send multiple text messages (or three times) on have similar affordable room rates (regular rate background was daunting to pre-registered groups instantly decisions regarding of 85 per person per hour from 6 p.m. to 4 for Karylle at first. She was an ■ Create recipient groups to send messages money, but after a.m.). Though both branches are marketed for artist through and through, to the right individuals her first foray into “family, business, and friends’ get-together”, and was hesitant to show her ■ Send pre-scheduled or real-time SMS entrepreneurship, she messages to select recipient groups each branch has its own unique attraction, partners how little she knew ■ Send SMS broadcasts from any webis now more openrequiring different promo packages. minded about making about running a business. connected PC For example, CenterStage in Quezon City Fortunately, being a diligent investments. For details and inquiries, call the Globe largely pulls in corporate and medical clients student at heart, Karylle Hotline 730-1288, or 1-800-8-730-1288 Judging from from nearby offices and hospitals who need forged on. To keep ignorance ( t o l l - f r e e v i a G l o b e ) ; o r v i s i t her ‘debut business a venue for their seminars, conferences, and at bay, she began reading up or go to any Globe performance’ there’s no Business Center or Globelines Payments some fun videoke afterward. “What’s nice rin on business and brushed up and Services Centers. doubt she also has the kasi, our function room is set up like a board on her accounting skills. talent for it. ●

Text Connect!





The CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, PAMPANGA is on a quest to bring color and light to the world BY ABBY YAO PHOTOS BY VINCENT COSCOLLUELA


AMPANGA is known nationwide for its cuisine and handcrafted products. But it’s the lanterns of the provincial capital of San Fernando that have gained for Pampanga its national and international identity. Dubbed the Lantern Capital of the Philippines because of its iconic Christmas lanterns unlike any other in the world, the city finds its greatest product its greatest challenge as well. The Giant Lantern Festival, where barangays compete for the honor of having the year’s best 18-foot, manually operated parol, draws 50,000 spectators every December. The giant lanterns share the same four components with the six- to 12-bulb “commercial” lantern, making them distinctly Fernandino: the siku-siku (main star), tambor (middle star), palimbun (around the main star), and punteta (outermost part). Although other provinces, such as Tarlac and Las Piñas, have begun making lanterns, the iconic parols have come to symbolize the City of San Fernando and the province of Pampanga as a whole. “We could see that the skills in making lanterns were inherent in the people of San Fernando,” says Pampanga Regional Director Bles Lantayona. “Because of this, we wanted to enhance the image of San Fernando as the lantern capital not only of Pampanga but of the Philippines as well.” Thus, the city government identified lanterns for DTI’s OTOP (One Town, One Product) program and the lanterns were twice named model OTOP for Region III. 12 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

Production of parols is labor-intensive so Daisy Flores and her team make their capiz lanterns almost year-round in preparation for peak sales in November and December

HOT NEGOSYO It takes half a day for a worker to make one lantern The electric parol was born in 1931, when electricity first came to Pampanga Arvin Quiwa, a fifth-generation parol maker, uses email and instant messaging to communicate with his Dubai clients Creativity and technical skills in parol-making are widely The base of a giant available in San Fernando City lantern is ready for setting up as early as September in time for the Giant Lantern Festival in December


Self-reporting from four firms peg 2007 sales at 6.34M, a mere fraction of the gross sales of the estimated 60 to 80 lantern makers in the city employing up to 10,000 workers in the months running up to the holiday season. The starting capital needed is 300,000 to 500,000, with 20 percent profit or higher if outside Pampanga. Makers can expect to recoup their investment within a year. The Quiwa family of Barangay Sta. Lucia is a prominent family of lantern makers who pioneered the use of plastic in the lanterns. Erning and his sons Francis, Eric and Arvin continue to practice the craft. Arvin employs around 20 workers and sells 2 million worth of lanterns a year, mainly street décor for local governments on a per project basis. Recently, he installed 20-foot lanterns of the Dubai Summer Surprises mascot all over the cosmopolitan Middle Eastern city. He was also involved in making the giant lantern in the Philippine pavilion of Dubailand. Closer to home, Daisy Flores and her 8 to 15 workers produce lanterns made of plastic and flexi lights, but their specialty are capiz lanterns, which cost between 700 to 4,000 on a wholesale basis. One worker makes 25 to 30 lanterns in two weeks. Aside from a streetside shop, Daisy also has a stall on Olongapo-Gapan Road, which is open year-round. Because her competitors lower the price for a quick sale, Daisy finds it difficult to raise the prices of her products despite the surge in the cost of raw materials this year. However, for her, scrimping on materials isn’t an option. On the same boat, Arnel Flores, who designed the winning giant lantern in last year’s Giant Lantern Festival, stopped making commercial lanterns in 1997 when the demand was adversely affected by the Asian crisis. Arnel prefers to design the lanterns manually. He has yet to tap the potential of the Internet

To complement their world-class lanterns, Pampangueños also make lawn ornaments that light up, such as snowmen and huge flowers

Belgium, New York and Australia,” he reveals. The city has also participated in the Christkindlmarkt, the traditional Christmas market in Vienna, Austria, and the Parol Lantern Festival in San in getting new clients, but he admits that Francisco, California. Some deals have been technology makes his job easier. Arnel uses a closed as a result of these invitations. cellphone to order materials from suppliers and According to City Tourism Officer Ching get delivery reports from them. Pangilinan, San Fernando’s lantern makers There is no shortage of labor in San export around three 40-foot containers abroad Fernando—many pedicab drivers make lanterns through distributors, but getting them ready on the side during the “-ber” months. Quality and for the world involves considerable financial pricing are the biggest hurdles for the ordinary support. “We could have the wiring harness lantern maker who sells to the Central Luzon accredited [by Underwriters Laboratories] market. Lydia Rivera of DTI Pampanga agrees for certain lantern designs to make sure with this, but sees the that the electrical CONTACT DETAILS broader perspective. component conforms to international standards,” Quiman Lantern ARVIN QUIWA GLOW GLOBALLY she says. “But for every “Malaki ang potential Sta. Lucia, City of San Fernando, Pampanga color combination, you niya,” says Rivera. The have to undergo another Mobile: 0926-3532375 market in Pampanga is accreditation. That’s limited, but elsewhere MNF Lantern Maker & General Merchandise another $2,500.” in the Philippines and ARNEL FLORES At least 2 million outside the country, the Prk. 10, Camia Street, Sta. Lucia, City is needed to put up an possibilities are endless. of San Fernando, Pampanga export-oriented lantern The local government making business. ULrecognizes that there Smilling Star Enterprises rated wires likewise have (note: intentional double l) is certainly a demand DAISY FLORES to be purchased in bulk abroad, especially in 19 Macabacle, Dolores at a minimum order of places where there City of San Fernando, Pampanga around 500,000, which is a sizeable Filipino is beyond the reach of community. the lantern makers. “We are promoting City Tourism Office The industry needs CHING PANGILINAN [ t h e l a n t e r n ] City Hall, City of San Fernando, Pampanga a global focus, an internationally and infusion of capital, finding out how to and investors who are make it exportable,” DTI Pampanga equally confident that s a y s C i t y o f S a n LYDIA RIVERA one of the province’s Fernando Mayor Oscar 2F ABN Plaza Building best products will make Sindalan, City of San Fernando, Rodriguez. “This year it in the world market, Pampanga we are being requested and you do not have to to display [lanterns] in Mobile: 0917-5008566 be Kapampangan to fit Lyons, France, Brussels, (or foot) the bill. ● OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 13

HONORING the OUTST PHOTOS BY DAKILA ANGELES Aside from a trophy, Narciso Mosuela, Sr. of Natomo Manufacturing took home 50,000 in cash, a laptop plus one year free subscription to Globe Visibility, and a mobile phone, also with one year free postpaid subscription

Winners take all. (From L-R) Maridol Ylanan of Globe Business; Marites Uy of Zaragoza Foods, Masigasig awardee for Mindanao; Narciso Mosuela, Sr. of Natomo Manufacturing, National Masigasig awardee; Llora Reyes of Capiz Multi-Purpose Coop, Masigasig awardee for Visayas; Merle Cruz and Danny Floro of DTI, and Virgilio Angelo, Chief Executive Officer of SBC

The Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) was a co-presentor of the DTI’s SME Week. In photo were Frances Tanner of CIDA, Merle Cruz and Francisco Floro of DTI


LL ROADS led to the Megatrade Hall 3 of SM Megamall last July 9, 2008, as everyone eagerly awaited the announcement of the 2008 Most Outstanding Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) recipients, and the first ever Globe Masigasig Awardee. The nationwide search—a collaboration between Globe Telecom and the Department of Trade and Industry—were set up to recognize Masigasig entrepreneurs–determined and persistent businessmen who are motivated to succeed despite difficult circumstances, as well as give recognition to those who have excelled as a result of the assistance provided by government agencies and/or private institutions. 14 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

Addressing the winners, Globe’s Maridol Ylanan said, “Thank you for teaching Filipinos how to succeed despite the odds. Your success is testament to the entrepreneurial spirit and flair alive in the country. Working with you has taught Globe the nature of Filipino success.” Ending her speech, Maridol was triumphant: “Tangkilikin natin ang gawang Pilipino!” DTI Secretary Peter Favila sent in his remarks which further boosted the morale of MSMEs in the country: “MSMEs give us a reason to celebrate. They remind us to continue to raise our economy through MSMEs. That is why we all have to synchronize our efforts to help our MSMEs any way we can.” ●

Dr. Volger Steigerwald of the GTZ (German Agency for Technical Cooperation) regional office—a DTI partner— presents 7 reference documents supporting Philippine SMEs to DTI’s Merle Cruz and the ceremony’s host, Rhodora Leaño of the Bureau of Small and Medium Enterprise Development


Capiz Multi-Purpose Coop, led by Llora Reyes, is the regional winner for Visayas

(LEFT) A surprised Narciso Mosuela, Sr., of Natomo Manufacturing’s shares his elation with his family after being named the national Masigasig Awardee of 2008 (BELOW) Natomo Manufacturing receives their certificate, trophy, and cash prize for being the regional winner for Luzon

Marites Uy of Zaragoza Foods receives the award as regional winner for Mindanao

“It is vital to streamline business the Philippines can catch up with other countries,” says Dr. Volger Steigerwald of GTZ Director Meynard Orberta of the Bureau of Domestic Trade Promotions reiterates that Globe Masigasig awards recognize SMEs who consistently reach success despite the odds

Merle Cruz, DTI Undersecretary, lauds women for taking the initiative to start businesses The Masigasig awards ceremony opened the week-long OTOP (One Town-One Product) Luzon Island Fair in the same venue OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 15







NARCISO MOSUELA’S unique stove invention has made NATOMO MANUFACTURING leader in metalcrafts

ARCISO “TATA CISO” MOSUELA is not an engineer, mechanic, nor mathematician. In fact, he did not even finish high school because of poverty. What he has though, he says, is a knack for metal fabrication. “Madali akong matuto pag dating sa makina,” he shares. “Mahilig akong kumalikot ng kung anu-ano.” He spent most of his adult life tilling a farm, where the work was strenuous and backbreaking. “Manual labor talaga,” he shares. “Kaya palagi akong nag-iisip kung paano ko mapapagaan ang ganitong klaseng trabaho.” His very first invention happened in 1978, when he and a friend pooled 70,000 to make their own rice thresher. It was a five horsepower machine that could thresh harvest from one hectare in one day, with 1.5 gallons of gasoline. It was popular with farmers who wanted to thresh their harvest quickly to prevent spoilage, but the partners had to stop making it when gas prices started to go up.


But it is the Super Kalan which CONTACT DETAILS: bought Tata Ciso fame—and also Natomo Manufacturing NARCISO MOSUELA: a bit of notoriety. “Palagi kong iniisip Brgy. Ubbog, The Super Kalan is a stove that kung anong bagong Bangar, La Union produkto ang pwede uses anything for fuel—from wood E-mail: kong gawin ngayon.” to sawdust—and produces neither smoke nor carbon deposits to stain pots and pans. It was the answer to the more features, including a heat rising cost of gas and electricity, but in the regulator, a chimney for the smoke, beginning, people balked when they found out and a funnel-like bottom where ashes that Tata Ciso was selling his stove for 80—a are collected and disposed off neatly. high price, considering clay stoves in the market were only selling for 5. “Tawag nila sa akin nun, T H E I N V E N T O R scientist na sira,” Tata Ciso recalls. Undeterred, ENTREPRENEUR IS BORN he went on to produce more stoves, borrowing By 1990, Tata Ciso had from a loan shark and buying materials from junk saved enough to put up shops. And as gas prices continued to rise, more Natomo Corporation and more people began to see the wisdom in (the name comes from the buying the Super Kalan. nickname of his son, Renato, Still, all was not rosy. Because the Super and the first syllable of his Kalan was made of iron, it rusted easily. “People surname) in Bangar, La Union. He started calling it ‘super kalawang,’” he recalls. got help from the Department Again, undiscouraged, he improved the stove of Science and Technology by using aluminum alloy and even added to buy more machinery and 16 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

borrowed money from banks, and eventually he was able to buy land, build a plant, and buy a delivery van. In 1998, his son, Danilo, joined the business and is now in-charge of marketing Natomo products throughout Luzon. “Di pa namin kaya ang Visayas tsaka Mindanao,” Tata Ciso shares, adding he would prefer to concentrate on distributing to nearby areas first. Today, Tata Ciso sells 50 to 60 units of his Super Kalan every week. Each is priced at 2,700, although some dealers sell them beyond 3,000. He says his customers range from the masses to even the wealthy, all of whom are affected by the rising prices of LPG. He has received accolades as an inventor— the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, under its regional wood energy program, bestowed on him in 1987 the “Best Design” award for the Third World country category—and is a recognized business leader in La Union. For winning the first ever Globe Masigasig Award, he received 50,000 in cash, a Globe postpaid plan, and a Globe Mobility Bundle.


Unlike other septuagenarians, Tata Ciso is quite skilled at texting. In fact, he calls SMS “ang pinakamalaking tulong sa negosyo ko.” He uses it to receive inquiries and also to keep tabs on the factory whenever he is out. “He is really hands-on,” says his son, Danilo. “Sometimes, we tell him to go out, ‘Kami na bahala dito’ or ‘Kami nalang kakausap sa tao na yan,’ but after awhile, we see him calling that same person himself.” Tata Ciso has no plans of retiring. Today, the 75-year-old grandfather still wakes up everyday at 4 a.m. to go to work, and is determined to stay on top of operations. He says he finds relaxation in thinking of new things to invent. “Palagi kong iniisip kung anong bagong produkto ang pwede kong gawin ngayon,” he continued on p18 shares. ●



Now with fast 3G wireless technology, GPS mapping, and support for enterprise features. Choose from among these iPhone 3G Plans that will suit your needs. iPhone 3G Plan iPhone 3G Plan iPhone 3G Plan iPhone 3G Plan iPhone 3G Plan 1599 2199 3299 3999 4999

iPhone 3G Plans Monthly Service Fee (MSF in PHP) Free Calls (Minutes) Free Text Messages Free GPRS Data (Hours) Free WiFi (Hours) Rates after Free (in Php)

1,599 100 350 40 20

2,199 210 350 60 30

3,299 350 450 100 Unlimited

3,999 500 550 100 Unlimited

4,999 750 650 100 Unlimited

iPHONE SPECIFIC PACKAGE HANDSETS Apple iPhone 3G (8GB) Apple iPhone 3G (16GB)


iPhone 3G Plan 1599

iPhone 3G Plan 2199

iPhone 3G Plan 3299

iPhone 3G Plan 3999

iPhone 3G Plan 3999

37,599 43,799

15,100 20,600

12,600 18,100

10,100 15,500

2,500 8,000

FREE 2,900

Rates are inclusive of VAT and Currency Exchange Rate Adjustments (CERA). Free text allocation applies to local text messages and Prices subject to change without prior notice 24 months minimum subscription for all plans. Handsets are subject to stock availability. Standard Corporate/SME requirements apply Handset or Phonekit comes with Php 1,000 worth of Bill Rebate or Load.


Hurry! Offer extended until October 31, 2008 only!

HOT BIZ PLANS Get classy and stylish phones with easy-to-use features A FREE Nokia 6300 at Plan 500

A FREE Nokia 6120 at Plan 800

BIZ LOAD ALLOWANCE PLANS Control how much your employees spend on calls and texts Get a postpaid plan + 2 extension plans for your staff Set how much load they get and when they get it

FREE Nokia 2630 + 2 Nokia 1208


FOR MORE INFO E-mail, visit, call (02) 730-1288 or 1-800-8-730-1288 (toll-free via Globe), or visit any Globe Business Center or Globelines Payments and Services Center.


Check your email while on-the-go! FREE* email access via Intellisync with these phones: FREE** Nokia 6120, Nokia E51, Nokia E71 * Save up to 4,800 covering 24 months ** Free phones for as low as Plan 1000

COVER FEATURE CMPC members tend to their flower farms


requirements of big hotels and other commercial establishments in the resort island of Boracay.


LLORA REYES:”Just because you’re a small enterprise doesn’t mean you can no longer think about going into exporting.”




The CAPIZ MULTI-PURPOSE COOPERATIVE in Panay has been instrumental in making island known as the Garden Center of the country


HE PROVINCE OF CAPIZ in the island of Panay is a major producer of potted orchids and orchid cutflowers, landscape materials, fresh foliages and potted ornamental plants in the whole of the Visayas. It is also recognized as one of the sources of the best and rarest ferns in the country today. Presently, it is slowly building a name as the premier source of exportable cutfoliages in the country, thanks to the efforts of the Capiz Multi-Purpose Cooperative, Inc. (CMPC). Established in 1989 and currently composed of 25 members, the cooperative serves as the primary coordinating body of the cutflower and ornamental plant growers of the entire province. EXPORT OPPORTUNITY

The cooperative’s big break came in 2004, when they were able to sign a contract with Japan Limited for the regular supply of cutfoliage to Japan. Japan Limited is the leading and biggest importing firm of cutfoliage and cutflowers in the 18 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

country, says CMPC Chair Llora Reyes, adding that initially, the Japanese demanded a shipment of three tons a week of assorted cutfoliages. This requires a total plant population of 1 million. “But our existing supply could not meet those orders,” she says. To cope,

Through further efforts, the cooperative was able to obtain assistance from the Department of Agriculture and Capiz local government the CMPC campaigned to establish a CONTACT DETAILS: among its memberpermanent Capiz Multi-Purpose growers to plant packing center Cooperative, Inc. identified foliages in Roxas City Balay Kapiznon Tradehouse, exclusively for and acquire a J a p a n L i m i t e d . McKinley Street, Roxas City, Capiz r e f r i g e r a t e d Website: Fortunately, five truck. For the members agreed last two years, to participate, and they were able they were provided to ship 15 times to assistance in accessing Japan an average of 1.2 appropriate production tons of assorted cutfoliages technologies and sourcing of valued at about US$100,000. planting materials. “We are the only cooperative “Actually, there was an attempt within this industry that has been to penetrate Japan as early as able to penetrate the export 2002, but it was a disaster,” market successfully, despite the recalls Llora. “Our local distributor weakening US dollar and the r e n e g e d o n t h e i r c o n t r a c t spiralling cost of freight,” Llora because of internal management says proudly. The cooperative is problems.” The cooperative was expected to penetrate the Korean left hanging and irate members market within the year. (especially the micro contract For their efforts, the cooperative growers) did not know what to do has been awarded the First Prize, with their products. In response, Regional Development Council the CMPC crafted a marketing VI, Best Implemented National plan that focused on promoting Government Agency Projects the product locally. The plan Category for 2006. succeeded, and as a result, there “Don’t give up when setbacks was a huge local demand for the occur,” Llora advises other small cutfoliages. entrepreneurs, adding that while the horticulture business is not GARDEN CENTER really problematic, the cooperative Today, cutfoliages from Capiz faced its biggest problem when can be found at the Dangwa typhoon Frank passed through Flower Market in Manila, as Iloilo last July destroying millions well as in Cebu and Iloilo. “We worth of flowers. “We were still deliver an average of 1,500 dozen able to meet our orders, but it cutfoliages to Dangwa every meant we had to work doubly month,” says Llora, adding that hard to ensure that we would have each delivery is valued around enough stocks for the next round 100,000. The market in Iloilo of shipments,” Llora says. is even bigger, with deliveries “Just because you’re a small amounting to 2,000 to 5,000 enterprise doesn’t mean you dozen cutflowers monthly, and can no longer think about going each shipment valued at as much into exporting,” she further as 150,000. advises. “Know where to look The cooperative also supplies for assistance, whether it’s by most of the landscaping needs of joining a cooperative, other premiere landscaping company associations, or seeking help from Bulacan Garden in Western the government. There is strength Visayas, as well as the landscape in numbers.” ●


SWEET (and SPICY) SUCCESS ZARAGOZA FOODS proves it has what it takes to be world class


UN and MARITES UY’S first business venture was buying and selling copra, but they eventually closed shop in 1993 because their dealers had accumulated too many debts. That same year, they decided to go into another kind of business. “Mahilig kasi si Jun sa Spanish-style sardines,” Marites explains. And since she has a Bachelor of Sciences in Food and Nutrition, “Jun told me to make something similar, or if possible, something even better,” she adds. So for the next months, Marites bought all the brands of bottled sardines she could find to study. Jun tasted all of them, telling her which ones he liked and what recipes needed tweaking. The task was made more difficult because Marites had to learn the processing technology on her own. “Trial and error ang ginawa ko,” she says. While she was able to pick up tips from the Rural Improvement Club of the Department of Agriculture in Cebu, it took her almost a year before she came up with a product that met the approval of her husband’s discriminating taste buds. They named their business Zaragoza— after the well-known city in Spain—for easy recall. FAMILY ENTERPRISE

Aside from coming up with the perfect recipe, Marites also sourced the ingredients herself. She would wake up at 4 a.m. to go to the wharf and buy herring sardines directly from the fishermen. The kitchen in the Uy home became Zaragoza Foods’ first production area, with Marites doing most of the cooking and processing. Eventually, her two household helpers and the rest of her children pitched in with production. Jun closed deals with outlet stores in Cebu and Dipolog and took charge of designing the label. To save on costs, the Uy children—who were then just in their teens—took public transportation when making deliveries. For those that needed to be shipped, Marites would haul them to the pier using the family car, unloading and carrying them herself to save on porters’ fees.


The company initially produced 240 bottles of sardines, and Marites admits that they hardly made profit that time. “Parang lugi pa yata kami,” she says. It was difficult to convince supermarkets, especially the big ones, to carry their products. “One institutional buyer even said, ‘We will call you’ without asking for our contact number,” says Marites. But armed with sheer determination, Jun and Marites persisted, joining trade fairs where they met more dealers and buyers. Slowly, business picked up and by 1996, they were able to transfer operations from their family kitchen to a 670square-meter compound in Dipolog City. In 1998, they partnered with a Manila-based trading firm

MARITES UY: “Yung ibang manufacturers, merong distributors, pero wala silang sales agents. Kami lang [ang meron].”

mainstream supermarkets in the United States, Canada, Singapore, and Australia. Marites attributes their success to aggressive marketing. “ Naghahanap kami continuously ng bagong buyers. Yung ibang manufacturers, merong distributors, pero wala silang sales agents. Kami lang [ang meron].” In 1999, they hired a sales agent to handle Visayas and Mindanao. He turned out to be a gem, scoring outlets in Palawan, Boracay, Cotabato and General Santos. In 2002, they hired two more sales agents, making their current sales force for Visayas and Mindanao a “lean but mean” three. Product development is also a priority. From the start, Marites and Jun believed in being sensitive to the market’s needs. For example, to cater to children’s delicate taste buds, they came up with the Mild Hot in Corn Oil variant. From then on, they just kept adding to the list—they now have over 33 bottled fish variants, including Portuguese Sardines, Ginisang Bagoong, Natural Bagoong, Salted Fish, Bangus, Tuyo plus Achara. Their workforce has ballooned to 119 and production is at 500 boxes a day. Last year, the company’s gross sales totaled over 40 Million.




that took care of distributing the bottled sardines in supermarkets all over Luzon and Metro Manila, such as Unimart, Cash and Carry, and all branches of S n’ R Price Club, SM, Robinsons, Landmark and Waltermart. Today, Zaragoza sardines can also be found in Filipino stores, oriental stores, and

To keep up with their booming business, Marites and Jun are learning to use technology and the Internet. For instance, Zaragoza Foods subscribes to an e-commerce site, wherein clients place orders via the Internet. They also plan to put up a website soon. But already, the company receives individual orders and inquiries from other countries via e-mail, thanks to their listing in the website of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, of which they are a member. Zaragoza Foods is still considered a newcomer in the bottled fish industry in Dipolog. Still, it has come a long way from the Uy household kitchen. Today, when the fresh catch come at dawn, CONTACT DETAILS: the fishermen text Zaragoza Foods Corporation Marites to come Lubing Oguis, Galas, and get them. Dipolog City, Zamboanga But instead of del Norte going to the E-mail: wharf herself, Marites now sends her workers to pick up the fish. ●



SIZE DOES MATTER Best friends DEXTER TAN and JEFFREY TAN find fame and fortune in selling fat fries and dips BY BOOTS MA. GARCIA-SISON PHOTOS BY JUN PINZON


he idea for New York Fries and Dips (NYFD) came to Dexter Tan when he was in line at the snack counter of a movie house one weekend. As he looked over the selections, he realized that all the offerings were of the “been there, done that” variety. “Popcorn, chips, soda, candy…ho-hum,” Dexter, who was then in his early twenties, recalls thinking. “The French fries, especially, were the usual skinny sizes, with just salt or cheese as condiments.” That was when he had his “A-ha!” moment—“Why not put up a business making and selling a different kind of French fries and dips?” Dexter immediately discussed the idea with his high school chum and best friend Jeffrey Tan. The two surfed the Internet, attended food shows, talked to suppliers, and sampled all the French fries that they could get their hands on. When the concept and recipes for the dips were down pat, the two chipped in 1 million (with help from their families) and formed NYFD in July 2002. “We put ‘NY’ in the business name because I have always been amazed with the city of New York. And then when we were conceptualizing this business, September 11 happened, and ‘NYFD’ became our dedication to the city, its lifestyle, and people,” Dexter explains. Jeffrey, meanwhile, adds that the name gives the product a unique flavor. “International ang dating,” he says. 20 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

NYFD’s business partners JEFFREY TAN (left) and DEXTER TAN (right) pose in front of their Makati branch

BATANG NEGOSYANTE NYFD fries make an excellent side dish

The Steak N’ Cheese Sandwich

prices. “For three years since we started, we were the cheapest, at 26 cents per gram. We were even cheaper than Jollibee’s fries, which were at 33 cents per gram,” Dexter shares. It was only recently that they increased prices, but the partners point out that the difference between them and the competition is minimal.


For breakfast, one can have French Toast topped with yummy blueberries

The porkchops is their bestseller

Building relationships with suppliers were the partners’ biggest problems when they were starting out because of their relative anonymity. “Older people were actually quite condescending, so we had to prove ourselves,” Jeffrey says. Slowly, by fulfilling what they would promise and always paying on time, the two started gaining the respect of the industry. Their passion for the product also helped. “The same older people changed their tunes once they realized we knew what we were talking about, and that we were good at what we do,” Jeffrey adds. They also experienced their share of unscrupulous suppliers. Dexter recounts one time when they purchased two chillers from a fabricator for a hefty 95,000. When the appliance broke down after a year, he and Jeffrey discovered that the supplier used second-hand materials, but sold the product at brand new prices. “After that, we made sure to screen our suppliers more carefully,” he says.


Spaghetti tossed in garlic and parsley


The partners opened their very first kiosk at the SM Megamall Food Court in April 2003, spending 500,000 on rent and initial inventory. They did not spend on any advertising, banking on the mall’s high foot traffic instead. Still, they were not prepared for the overwhelming number of customers who showed up. “There was a long line for several days, and we even ran out of takeout bags,” Dexter says. “People were naturally attracted because our fries are unique,” he explains. “First, our sizes are huge; most fries in the market are called shoestring fries, which are only onefourth of an inch thick. Our fries are threefourths of an inch.” Secondly, Dexter and Jeffrey packaged their products as healthier alternatives to the competition. “We kept the potato skin on the fries, which contains more nutrients than

Less than two years after it started, NYFD was named Most Outstanding Potato Fries by the Consumers League of the Philippines Foundation. The partners started franchising the business in June 2004. Today, there are 42 branches of NYFD in malls all over the country—including Davao and Cebu—of which seven are company-owned. “We used to have NYFD stores in schools and office buildings, but we learned eventually that the traffic in these markets were almost always the same, so the people were more prone to getting sawa with our products,” Dexter says. “It showed in our sales—for the first three months, sales would be in an upswing, but then they’d begin to plateau. While it never really petered out, it didn’t make sense to maintain them anymore.” Aside from fries and dips, NYFD now also sells onion rings and chicken nuggets. “We just wanted to maximize our capabilities,” Dexter explains. “After all, the equipment and process involved in making onion rings is the same as making fries.”

“Do it right from the start and make sure product quality is excellent.” the actual meat,” Dexter adds. He says this is possible even though the fries are cooked in high heat because they do not over-fry the fries. “It’s one of our culinary secrets,” he shares. “Basically, we were able to find a way to maintain the oil’s temperature.” NYFD’s fries also do not contain monosodium glutamate (MSG) or extenders, and are cooked in canola oil. And the dips— which range from the standard honey mustard to the more experimental Hawaiian curry—are produced from natural ingredients. Finally, despite using such premium ingredients, NYFD fries were sold at affordable


BATANG NEGOSYANTE In 2005, the partners took another step up when they opened two NYFD Diners: at the Cybermall Building in Eastwood City, Libis, and the NYFD Diner on Dela Rosa Street , Makati. Both places serve full meals, from pork chops and sandwiches, to soups and salads. “When we started NYFD, we really wanted to put up a business that would serve nothing but the best kind of food, so a restaurant was something that we really aspired for,” Dexter explains. “But we also wanted to be less risky, so we started small and then let the business grow from there—from a cart, to a stall operation, and finally to a restaurant.”


Unlike most French fries retailers who buy the finished materials from a supplier, NYFD manufactures its own fries and dips. “We wanted to go into manufacturing from Day One because we wanted our product to be nothing but the best, and manufacturing allows us to control the quality of our output,” Dexter explains. “It also enables us to be less dependent on suppliers, and gives us room to innovate on sizes, flavors, and other characteristics unique to us.” But doing things themselves had its downside, especially in the first few years, when everything was, in the words of Dexter, done “mano-mano.” “Dips were mixed by hand; the fries were placed into the molds by hand,” Dexter shares. It was meticulous and slow, although the partners were soon able to acquire state-of-the-art equipment that sped up production while still FOR maintaining a very high standard FRANCHISING of quality. INQUIRIES: behave,” he shares. “I get “Our working philosophy NY FRIES & DIPS, NYFD DINER a kick whenever I see that guides our manufacturing Warehouse #4, Road 12, they also order my personal process,” Jeffrey shares. NDC Compound, Pureza favorites from the menu; it “Do it right from the start Street, Sta. Mesa, Manila just means we were able and make sure product E-mail: to really grasp what the quality is excellent.” market is looking for.” But manufacturing also Website: has its pros. “The bread and WIRED FOR SUCCESS butter of our business are our Netizens can log on to the NYFD special recipes for our dips and website ( to check other food offerings,” Dexter explains. “By making them ourselves, these recipes out the company’s latest product offerings, remain classified.” In fact, up to today, only know the latest promos, and inquire about a select few in the company are privy to the franchise opportunities. Jeffrey, meanwhile, subscribes to Globe Visibility so he can stay on unique recipes and ingredients list. top of operations. NYFD Diners will also soon have wifi Internet access. “This is just part of our TAKING CUES FROM CUSTOMERS Every NYFD outlet has comment sheets which vision of providing our customers with nothing are handed out to customers to fill out. Dexter but the best,” Dexter explains. “Wifi is the most says he and Jeffrey go through these sheets advanced technology available these days; even every week, and make adjustments where cell phones already have wifi capability,” Dexter needed. “I also like making surprise visits to explains. “When asked about their future plans, the the stores, not just to keep in touch with my staff but also to see how the customers partners both agree that for them, “the sky 22 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

DEXTER TAN: “When we started NYFD, we really wanted to put up a business that would serve nothing but the best kind of food.”

is the limit.” Dexter adds: “Anything related to food, I’ll do it. I can even see us venturing into full-scale food manufacturing—not just fries, but maybe even juices. We just have to maximize whatever we can do in a day and hope the best will turn out.” ●

Ordering and processing inventory is now as easy as sending text!


Allows your branches to order supplies in just a few keystrokes.

Drastically reduce human error for faster turnaround and increased sales

For details and inquiries, call the Globe Hotline 730-1288, or 1-800-8-730-1288 ( t o l l - f r e e v i a G l o b e ) ; o r v i s i t or go to any Globe Business Center or Globelines Payments and Services Centers.


Why I love my iPHONE


This month’s contributors share what they like most about this revolutionary mobile phone from Globe JOLINA MAGDANGAL TV Host/Actress/ Owner, Jolina’s Fashion Gallery Do you consider yourself a techie person? I’m not the techie type in the sense that I can do amazing things with gadgets, but I do rely heavily on them to organize my life. What do you look for in a cellphone? Aside from the usual text and call options, gusto ko rin may camera with good picture quality, tsaka may video feature. Okay din kung may connectivity options—bluetooth, wifi, 3G—because I’m always on the go. What do you like best about your iPhone 3G? With iPhone 3G, it’s like I have a pocket-sized computer! Everything is in there—I can surf the Internet, send e-mails, upload and view photos, and get in touch with my suppliers at all times—without having to lug a heavy laptop around. Whether backstage at a show or shooting on location in the mountains, I can easily log on to eBay and my blog, check what’s new, comment on the message boards or upload new photos. iPhone 3G also helps me sell stuff even when I’m not at my boutique. For example, sometimes I wear my own designs during my shows; afterwards, people ask me about them. With iPhone 3G, I can show them photos of the other items that I have, so they are able place their orders right then and there.

GIL GENIO Head, Globe Business How is iPhone 3G different/better from the old iPhone? As the name suggests, iPhone 3G now takes advantage of Globe’s 3G/HSDPA network, resulting in dramatically faster downloads, browsing, or even entertainment. The iPhone software update to 2.0 also improves the already groundbreaking user interface, and makes possible an open application environment. How can iPhone 3G be beneficial to SMEs? At the simplest level, negosyantes can now connect to popular email applications such as Yahoo and Gmail, as well as Microsoft Exchange. You no longer have to worry about addon programs or devices to have e-mail truly on the go. There are also a variety of relatively cheap (even free) productivity software for businesses to manage projects, time and finances. Personally, what is your favorite iPhone 3G feature, and why? It would be the Apple App Store, where one can find applications in every category, from games to business, education to entertainment, finance to health and fitness, productivity to social networking, which you can download (some even for free) and tailor to fit your needs. So on a personal basis, I like that the App Store allows users to be more creative.

RAMON EUGENIO Owner, Myron’s Place


How does iPhone 3G help you run your business better? First of all, I use a Mac computer, so I am able to sync my contacts, calendar, photos and music into my iPhone 3G effortlessly. This means I am productive all the time. Secondly, thanks to 3G connectivity, I am able to work even when I’m on the go—retrieve and send e-mail, check market lists, or communicate with suppliers and partners instantly. Lastly, the App Store continuously comes up with helpful new features that improve my personal and professional life. Downloading them provides me with additional competencies, one App at a time.

How does iPhone 3G help you run your business better? It allows me easy access to the Internet, either through 3G or wi-fi. With these, I can check e-mails from clients, send quotations, or even send sketches easily and from anywhere. As long as there’s a hotspot, I can do my work. The Calendar feature helps me a lot in keeping myself on schedule, reminding me of deadlines and appointments. Finally, the big memory is very useful because I can store photos and videos of previous works and collections. With it, I can present to clients even without bringing my laptop. OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 23

GOING ALL NATURAL GIGA VENTURES finds success with their line of all-natural soaps and blends B Y A B B Y YA O • P H OTO S B Y DA K I L A A N G E L E S


hen JOY and PEPING DE VILLA decided to go into the business of manufacturing home, personal care, and pet care products, they knew they had to offer the market something different in order to stand out. “So we went back to using the most basic of ingredients,” explains Joy. For their soaps, they used a mixture of olive and coconut oils, instead of the usual mineral oil, making the product more easily absorbed by the skin. For their other products, they eschewed artificial chemicals as active ingredients, relying instead on natural essential oils and extracts to minimize the risk of skin allergies and irritations. The result: the De Villas’ GIGA brand (which is an acronym for the couples’ mantra “God is Good Always”) is now a well-known name, with return customers, some of whom travel great distances to stock up on their items. The company is now exporting to Korea, and testing markets as far away as Australia and France. 24•OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

JOY DE VILLA: “Many have compared us to the imported brand The Body Shop, which also sells natural products. If that is the case, then our products are very reasonable.”

CONTACT DETAILS: GIGA VENTURES ● Fashion Village, Tiendesitas, Pasig City ● Level 2 Atrium, Shoppesville, Greenhills, San Juan ● Ground Floor, V-Mall, Greenhills, San Juan ● Lower Ground Floor, SM Megamall A, Mandaluyong City Mobile: 0917-8862170 E-mail: Website:


The De Villas’ first business venture was actually a garments boutique, Rowena, which the couple started in 1986 and grew to five branches over the next ten years. Then the Asian economic crisis struck in 1997, and the market became flooded with cheap garments imported from China and Thailand. The deeply religious De Villas became ill at ease competing with fellow sellers who were smuggling items and undercutting sales to save on taxes and duties. “It became hard to compete aboveground,” Joy recalls. Sales started to decrease, and she turned to prayer for direction. “It became clear that this business is not part of God’s divine plan for us. So I told my husband, ‘Mag-iba nalang tayo ng business.’” When the lease of their stores came up, the couple decided not to renew the contract anymore, despite the advice of mall management, who pointed out that their store’s sales were still comparable to that of other stores. Family and friends also advised them against the move, telling them that the crisis would pass. But the De Villas remained steadfast, and in 1999, after 13 years in the business, they closed shop.

GIGA’s line of natural essential oils can be used to make everything from massage oils to scented candles.

Their Seaweed Slimming Oil are a hit with women. Koreans love the parchment paperwrapped Bath Botanics line.


In the next seven years, the De Villas relied on their savings and occasionally borrowed from relatives for their day-to-day needs, while struggling to get their new business off the ground. It was Peping who thought of selling consumer goods, since they never go out of season and are purchased repeatedly. The couple started repacking soaps from a supplier, but figured they could make more money if they just made the soaps on their own. Peping took short courses in soap-making offered by the Technology Resource Center ( and then spent 30,000 for ingredients and a home mixer. He started experimenting with various ingredients, relying solely on the basic chemistry classes he took in college and adjusting the formuation based on feedback from family and friends. It took five months before the De Villas felt confident about the results. In 2003, armed with nothing but soap, massage oil, and room and linen spray, GIGA Ventures began to join trade fairs and bazaars. “It was hard to penetrate department stores because we were an unknown brand, so we just decided to sell our products ourselves,” Joy says. The move was a blessing in disguise, as it allowed the De Villas to talk directly to their customers and explain what their products were all about.


The No Pain Balm, another top seller, can soothe tired muscles The Seaweed Slimming Soap make ideal gift items.

It did not take long for the brand to become a hit with an increasingly health conscious market that was always on the lookout for all-natural personal care products.

Today, monthly production, not including exports and special orders, averages 5,000 soaps, 2,000 balms, and 2,400 bottles of sprays and oils. The business currently rakes in 500,000 to 700,000 a month in sales, of which 60 percent is from retail and 40 percent from wholesale. The high season runs from October to March, peaking during the holidays, when they make more than thrice their monthly average. “We hire extra people and work double-time as early as September to prepare for the November and December orders,” Joy shares. Joy says that while their products are priced higher than local brands, on the other hand, this is only because their quality is comparable to that of imported brands. “Many have compared us to the imported brand The Body Shop, which also sells natural products. If that is the case, then our products are very reasonable,” she points out.


In early 2005, the De Villas borrowed 100,000 from Joy’s sister to construct their very first outlet in the Fashion Village at Tiendesitas in Pasig City. Business here was so good that by the end of that same year, they were able to pay off all their loans in full. GIGA Ventures now has three other outlets (two in Greenhills and one in SM Megamall), and a Manila-based distributor takes care of supplying their products to Watsons and other local department stores. GIGA also supplies to dermatologists, spas, hotels in Boracay and Manila, and have been asked to make corporate giveaways and souvenirs on many occasions. “Lahat ng marketing namin, God-sent. We don’t actively seek it out,” Joy swears. “People would try out our product, and then they would contact us.” Their break into the export market came last year, when a local distributor of papaya soaps to Korea approached them. “He used to be the distributor of another local brand to Korea, but then the manufacturer found out and decided to sell the product to the Koreans directly. So this distributor looked for another papaya soap brand, and discovered GIGA,” Joy recalls. “Now he tells us that our product is even better than the other brand!” GIGA, through distributors, has also started exporting to Japan and Australia on a trial basis, meaning the shipments are not that regular yet; this year, they have a trial shipment for France.


Joy finds relating to the workers and setting the standards for export the biggest challenge to the business right now. “Our Korean customers are very conscious of quality, especially with the packaging. So di pwede ang ‘pwede na.’ Maski balot lang yun, dapat ayos. Hindi pwede yung shortcut. Hindi pwedeng tabingi,” she stresses. OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG • 25


Each of GIGA Ventures’ products is the result of painstaking research and experimentation

“Lahat ng marketing namin, God-sent. We don’t actively seek it out,” Joy swears. “People would try out our product, and then they would contact us.” TELECOM AS A TOOL

Although the business relies mainly on word of mouth and exposure in trade fairs, the De Villas acknowledge that the company website ( has allowed customers and potential business partners to reach them faster. They talk to foreign clients through e-mail, and the free translation services offered by Internet sites such as Google help in communicating with non-English speakers. Joy also stays in constant touch with her staff using mobile phones, and receives daily sales reports via SMS. There are more things to come in the months ahead, including the launch of their baby-care line by the end of the year. “We will also have a full-service laboratory by next year,” Joy shares. “In the future, we hope to open outlets in Alabang and Makati, get more regional and international distributors, and go into franchising. All in God’s time, when we are prepared.” ●

Take your head office on the road with the

SME Mobility Bundle Get wireless Internet access via Globe Visibility and your very own laptop. Access e-mail, download files, do online meetings, and surf the Net wherever you may be. For more information, call (02) 730-1288 or 1-800-8-730-1288 (toll free via Globe); or visit or go to any Globe Business Center or Globelines Payments and Services Center. 26 • OCTOBER 2008 • GLOBE MASIGASIG

The Masigasig Awards (October 2008)  
The Masigasig Awards (October 2008)  

Super Inventor NARCISO MOSUELA Cutflower Exporter LLORA REYES Sardines Producer MARITES UY