MyCebu.ph: Cebu News & Features

Re/Discovering Cebu, one story at a time

Category: Business

Shell holds Bike Fair in Cebu, unveils Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil

With Cebu accounting for the largest motorcycle community in the Visayas, Shell picked it to host one leg of the Shell Bike Fair 2017 held last Saturday at the SM…

With Cebu accounting for the largest motorcycle community in the Visayas, Shell picked it to host one leg of the Shell Bike Fair 2017 held last Saturday at the SM Seaside City.

“It’s one way for us to thank our bikers for always supporting Shell,” said Recca Menchavez-Malabanan, Shell Advance Brand Manager during a press conference held before the event. “It’s also a day for us to recognize the different bike clubs.”

Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil

SHELL ADVANCE. The company highlighted Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil during the recent Shell Bike Fair 2017 in SM Seaside City Cebu.

The event also highlighted the recently launched Shell V-Power fuels and Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil.

“The two brands are any bikers’ reliable companion on the road: Shell Advance allows for a smoother ride by protecting the engine from wear and maintaining clean pistons, while the new and improved Shell V-Power is designed to deliver both performance and efficiency,” the company said in a press statement.

Shell Bike Fair Cebu

SHELL ADVANCE MOTORCYCLE OIL. (From left) Mark Malabanan, Shell V-Power brand manager; Recca Menchavez-Malabanan, Shell Advance brand manager; Ricky Altonaga, Pilipinas Shell district manager; Serge Bernal, Pilipinas Shell Lubricants marketing manager; Paz Tiongco, indirect sales manager for lubricants; and Brandon Briones, marketing implementer shortly after a press conference on the Shell Bike Fair 2017 in Cebu.

“The bike fair is, for us, about listening to our consumers on what they want and they like traveling,” said Serge Bernal, Shell Lubricants Marketing Manager.

Recca Menchavez-Malabanan, Shell Advance Brand Manager, gave journalists and bloggers a rundown of the advantages for bike owners to use their motorcycle oil. She said the Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil is the “complete package that offers complete protection for the bike.”

She said the formulation of the oil offers the key benefits of protecting against engine wear and high temperature while increasing fuel economy, cleaning the pistons, and retaining horsepower.

The bike fair was held at the SM Seaside Skyhall. Shell gave away a lot of prizes including 3 new bikes: a Yamaha Aerox, Suzuki Raider, and Honda CBR 150.

“For over 100 years, Pilipinas Shell’s products and services have evolved to meet the current needs of Filipino motorists. We want our customers to know that Shell is every Pinoy motorists’ partner as they face challenges on the road. Shell has evolved into more than just a gas station; it is a pit stop that fuels both you and your motorcycles,” said Anthony Lawrence Yam, Pilipinas Shell Vice President for Retail.

More photos of Shell Bike Fair 2017 Cebu

Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil

 

 

No Comments on Shell holds Bike Fair in Cebu, unveils Shell Advance Motorcycle Oil

BPO companies offer most jobs in Cebu; IT professionals get highest pay

Information technology (IT) employees continue to be the highest paid workers in Cebu, according to the 2017 edition of the JobStreet.com Cebu Jobs and Salary Report. The business process outsourcing…

Information technology (IT) employees continue to be the highest paid workers in Cebu, according to the 2017 edition of the JobStreet.com Cebu Jobs and Salary Report. The business process outsourcing (BPO)/shared services industry also continues to have the most jobs available in the region.

The report also shows that some of Cebu’s specialists in the junior executive and managerial levels actually earn more compared to the average of their specializations nationally. Cebu’s banking (P30,415 average) and PR/communications (P27,125) specialists in the junior executive level earn more compared to the national averages of P27,188 and P26,948 of the same specializations, respectively.

Moreover, the average earnings of Cebu’s managers in corporate strategy and real estate are also higher compared to the national average. Corporate strategy managers in Cebu earn P13,587 more compared to the national average, while Cebu’s real estate managers earn an average of P81,625, which is close to twice the national average of P48,976.

Job trends in Cebu, Central Visayas

The data on job trends for Cebu and Central Visayas also show similarities with the national list, with BPO/shared services, retail, and manufacturing topping the list of industries with the most jobs.

The report also delves deeper into which specializations the BPO/shared services firms want to hire. Specialists in IT and education are now more in demand than their tech support and telesales counterparts, the latter seen as traditionally more “employable” by BPO/shared services companies.

The report also includes the results of a survey done on fresh graduate hiring behavior participated in by 30 Cebu and Central Visayas employers.

Applicant’s attitude

According to the study, all respondents claim to have hired one for the past 12 months and they are now keener on looking into a candidate’s attitude as a primary qualification rather than previous work experience or academic honors. Second, while the rest of the country does not regard school as a primary consideration when looking at a fresh graduate’s profile, Central Visayan and Cebu respondents consider it the third most important factor, after field of study relevance.

Employers were also asked to rank particular attributes of their fresh graduate hires. While they scored highest on willingness to learn, personal grooming, and punctuality, they would need to improve on their sense of initiative, task management efficiency, and going beyond the call of duty.

With the information presented on the report, JobStreet.com aims to inform employers of current employment trends. “With the dynamism Cebu’s job market, we hope to equip all our employers with all the tools that should enable them to be more competitive in the eyes of jobseekers and the rest of the job market,” JobStreet.com Country Manager Philip Gioca said. (Press release)

No Comments on BPO companies offer most jobs in Cebu; IT professionals get highest pay

Accenture inaugurates 5th facility in Cebu, highlights new and emerging tech in providing solutions

Accenture inaugurated its 5th facility in Cebu on Wednesday with a hologram of one of its officials briefing the guests and handling the ceremonies in the Filinvest Cyberzone at the…

Accenture inaugurated its 5th facility in Cebu on Wednesday with a hologram of one of its officials briefing the guests and handling the ceremonies in the Filinvest Cyberzone at the IT Park in Lahug, Cebu City.

That part of the program was meant to highlight a key character of the facility: a center for agile development and design thinking to produce innovation using “new IT.”

“This floor is very much in ‘the new IT’,” said Accenture managing director Arvin Yason, who hosted the ceremony as a hologram. With a lot of open spaces and movable furniture to allow quick reconfigurations as well as huddle areas and design-thinking spots, “we instill nimbleness and agility in the way we work.”

Accenture in Cebu

HOLOGRAM. Accenture inaugurates its newest facility in Cebu with a hologram of managing director Arvin Yason leading the ceremonies (3rd from left). With Yason are (from left) managing director JP Palpallatoc, Jun Sa-a of CIB.O, and Accenture country managing director Lito Tayag.

Commitment to Cebu

The opening of the new facility is also “a manifestation of our commitment to Cebu,” said Accenture country managing director Lito Tayag. He also said the company is on track to meeting the 1,000 in additional workers it committed to employ at the start of the year to mark their 10th anniversary. He said they’ve already hired an additional 800 workers for Cebu, bringing its workforce here to 5,800.

“Cebu is an integral component, a strategic part of our practice here in the Philippines,” Tayag said. “More than the numbers – and we’re very happy with the numbers so far – it is really the value, the kind of innovative services that we deliver out of our Cebu operations.”

The new facility will showcase technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, augmented reality, and the internet of things.

Cebu talent

“We are very happy about the kind of talent that we have here but just as importantly, we would continue to develop these talents,” Tayag said in a press conference held after the inauguration and facility tour for journalists and members of the academe.

Tayag, Yason and JP Palpallatoc, managing director and Accenture digital lead in the Philippines, led the tour of the facility.

Among the highlights of the event was a demonstration of a parking system that allows people to know ahead, via a mobile app, available spaces in a business such as a mall. The system, built by a Cebu team as part of a company-wide innovation contest, also allows for people to reserve parking slots and even pay digitally.

Another product presented to guests was a crisis response and management system that allows Accenture to keep track of its employees and know whether they are safe or in need of assistance after an emergency like a natural disaster. Alerts can be sent out on various platforms like email, SMS and mobile notifications.

Accenture also showed guests how a redesign of the Qantas website resulted in higher sales. They also demonstrated an augmented reality app that makes print materials such as a map of an amusement park interactive and multi-media as well as overlay ads and information triggered by location data.

Accenture Cebu

PASSION PROJECTS, DESIGN THINKING. JP Palpallatoc, managing director and Accenture digital lead in the Philippines, introduces the team that built a system for parking that uses apps to inform drivers of available spaces and let them reserve locations and pay for it.

Redesign retail experience

More than digital, Accenture also highlighted how they were able to reinvent the physical retail experience for customers of Smart Communications using design thinking and various technologies. This resulted in a 249% increase in foot traffic, 80% reduction in waiting time and 169% increase in store sales in the redesigned stores.

During the tour, officials stressed the design thinking approach into providing solutions to their clients. “To deliver delight consistently at the speed that our clients desire for their customers, we need to start with design thinking and user-centricity,” Yason said.

The way the newly-inaugurated facility is configured also plays a key role in how Accenture is “upskilling, reskilling, cross-skilling and multi-skilling our talent,” he said. From being focused on “classrooms” in teaching workers new skills, Accenture has started to “enable nooks and areas where people, while on break, can start learning new IT in smaller bite-sized formats, whether via video or an app or game that we develop.”

Accenture Cebu

CRISIS COMMUNICATION. This system enables Accenture to keep track of its employees, notify them during emergencies, and get feedback on whether they are safe or not.

Empower workers

Other locations will be retrofitted based on the new facility’s design because workers gave positive feedback that the configuration “empowers them to work in the new IT – working agile, doing standup meetings, being able to collaborate,” said Yason.

The facility helps Accenture “future-proof our people,” Tayag said.

“We’ve grown tremendously in Cebu for the last 10 years. That growth is a reflection not just of Accenture’s capabilities but also the capabilities of the local market in terms of talent, the way the academe has been producing talent for us,” Yason said.

Accenture is among the top tech companies based in Cebu. It has been given that recognition by the Cebu IT-BPM Organization for several years. The company’s other locations in Cebu are in Pioneer House, Robinsons Cybergate Cebu, eBloc Tower 2 and eBloc Tower 3 at the IT Park.

Accenture in Cebu

TREMENDOUS GROWTH IN CEBU. Accenture managing director Arvin Yason (left) and country managing director Lito Tayag after holding a press conference with Cebu journalists shortly after a tour of their 5th facility in the province.

Position as innovation center

Yason said the company is looking for engineers with good grasp of AI, robotics, and analytics to staff their locations.

“Our clients sit on top a lot of data but a lot of that is what we call dark data – they don’t know what they have. We are partnering with them to leverage more and more of that dark data to create revenue where there was no opportunity in the past. (We do this) through the power of data visualization and analytics and eventually AI as well,” Yason said.

Tayag said that what the company wants to foster among its workers is a mindset for innovation as they move up in the “value chain of our services.”

“At the end of the day, we believe that we can position our services here in the Philippines from an innovation standpoint rather than purely from a delivery standpoint,” he added.

No Comments on Accenture inaugurates 5th facility in Cebu, highlights new and emerging tech in providing solutions

GCash launches GoPay, Philippines’ 1st mobile money QR payment system

GCash has launched the nation’s first QR payments via smartphone, a move expected to change the landscape of how Filipinos pay for their purchases. Dubbed “GoPay”, it is the newest…

GCash has launched the nation’s first QR payments via smartphone, a move expected to change the landscape of how Filipinos pay for their purchases.

Dubbed “GoPay”, it is the newest feature within the GCash app, which allows customers to use their GCash account to pay for goods and services by simply scanning QR codes displayed by merchants and establishments.

For consumers, this eliminates the hassle of bringing money, waiting for change, or getting into misunderstandings over payments. Merchants, on the other hand, would no longer need expensive machines to process mobile money transactions but only QRs with a unique code that is linked to their GCash wallet.

Cashless society

By making QR codes available to anyone, even to ambulant vendors and sari-sari store owners, GCash will be paving the way for a cashless society which means faster, more convenient, and secure transactions for both merchants and consumers.

“Our goal has always been to make finance more inclusive by building a cashless ecosystem. GoPay QR payments solution will close the loop and drive merchants accepting GCash payments. We plan to extend this service from all types of retailers nationwide down to our favorite fishball vendor.” said John Rubio CEO and President of Mynt, a subsidiary of Globe Telecom dedicated to developing payments solutions using GCash.

Mobile money convenience

JM Aujero, Mynt Merchant Acquiring Head added, “With GoPay QR, consumers don’t even need to bring cash when they go shopping or when they eat out. It is the best option for people who do not want to use credit cards but are either wary of having cash with them due to safety reasons or just want the convenience that mobile money offers.”

To use GoPay, a customer with an iPhone or an Android smartphone just needs to download or update to the latest version of the GCash App, register for an account, and fund his GCash wallet at any of over 12,000 GCash Partner Outlets nationwide. Once done, he has to open the GCash App and swipe left on the page. The GCash App will bring up the phone’s camera, at which point he has to “scan” a partner store’s QR code and enter the amount to be paid.

GoPay will be rolled out within the next few weeks at select partner stores. Its introduction is in line with the thrust of Ant Financial, parent company of Alipay and strategic partner of Mynt, to accelerate financial inclusion and upgrade payment services in the Philippines. Alipay popularized QR code payments in China.

No Comments on GCash launches GoPay, Philippines’ 1st mobile money QR payment system

Shell launches new V-Power line that “improves efficiency, cleanses engines”

Shell’s V-Power fuel line has been reformulated to increase fuel efficiency and engine cleaning capabilities, officials announced in an event in Cebu yesterday. “Part of our job is to really…

Shell’s V-Power fuel line has been reformulated to increase fuel efficiency and engine cleaning capabilities, officials announced in an event in Cebu yesterday.

“Part of our job is to really understand our consumers – who they are, what they really want. What we know is that they have evolving needs,” said Pilipinas Shell Fuels Brand Manager Maan Abas in a press conference in Cebu City yesterday.

Driving in the Philippines is a challenge because of the traffic, Abas said. To help deal with this, Shell’s new V-Power line contains fuels innovation that increases engine efficiency.

Shell Fuels Scientist Mae Ascan

IMPROVEMENTS. Shell Fuels Scientist Mae Ascan discusses the improvements offered by the new V-Power line of fuels in an event in Cebu City.

Extensive research, development

The new Shell V-Power line uses proprietary Dynaflex technology that took the company more than 5 years to develop, involving tests of over 250 cars and exceeding 3 million kilometers, said Shell Fuels Scientist Mae Ascan.

Shell has 170 fuels scientists in 5 fuels technology centers all over the world. Ascan is based in the center in Malaysia.

Ascan said Shell continually innovates on fuels because “engine technology is evolving and we want to make sure we are keeping pace.”

Shell V-Power Cebu

SHELL V-POWER exhibit in SM Seaside City.

Maximize energy from fuels

“Maximize the amount of energy that you can get from your fuel – this is what we are trying to tackle. Reduce the wastage of energy,” she said.

The new Shell V-Power, Ascan said, addresses 2 key issues that impact engine performance – build-up of deposits and friction.

Ascan said engines are getting smaller and yet more powerful. This trend provides a “harsher condition for your fuel.” Injecting fuel involves very high pressures through a microscopic hole. This, Ascan explained, makes formation of deposits on such parts as nozzle holes and inlet valves that will ultimately impact engine performance.

Shell V-Power Cebu launch

TEAM SHELL. Shell officials during the Cebu launch of the new V-Power led by Shell Fuels Scientist Mae Ascan (5th from left), Pilipinas Shell Fuels Brand Manager Maan Abas (6th from left), Brands and Communication Manager Raine Capadocia (4th from left) and Marketing Implementer Brandon Briones (7th from left).

Cleaning molecules

Ascan said Shell V-Power “contains cleaning molecules that help remove up to 80% of deposits that have already formed.” The active cleaning power has “the twin effect of improving system condition and restoring lost performance,” Shell said in a press statement.

The new V-Power fuels also contain friction-reducing molecules, “helping engine parts that are difficult for lubricating oils to reach, including the vital area in the engine between the piston ring and the cylinder wall,” the company said.

Shell V-Power Cebu

SHELL V-POWER brand activation at the SM Seaside City.

The new Shell V-Power Diesel, on the other hand, “is designed to help restore up to 100% of your engine’s performance by removing deposits from fuel injectors,” the company said.

The new fuels have been available throughout the country, including Cebu, since June 8, Abas said.

The pump prices of the new V-Power fuels are similar to the old line it is replacing. The “fuel got better at the same price,” Ascan said.

No Comments on Shell launches new V-Power line that “improves efficiency, cleanses engines”

Globe myBusiness Academy brings top industry experts to DTI’s Negosyo Fair

To support the growing number of Filipino entrepreneurs, Globe myBusiness recently joined the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Negosyo Fair through Globe myBusiness Academy, a free learning session that…

To support the growing number of Filipino entrepreneurs, Globe myBusiness recently joined the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Negosyo Fair through Globe myBusiness Academy, a free learning session that educates independent business owners on marketing trends, increasing revenues, and discovering new solutions to stay competitive in the digital age.

“Filipinos are naturally enterprising, so it comes to no surprise that many are opting to open their own business instead of working in an office. Globe myBusiness Academy aims to guide them in creating a plan for success and to turn their passion into profits,” said Senior Advisor for Globe myBusiness Derrick Heng.

Globe MyBusiness

BUSINESS TIPS. Globe myBusiness teams up with “My Puhunan” host Karen Davila (right) to discuss business tips for entrepreneurs with (from left) Globe myBusiness Head of Managed Service Grace Anduiza; DTI Assistant Regional Director Teresita De Lima; Ricca Del Rosario of Half the Price; Globe myBusiness Ambassador and owner of Mercato Centrale RJ Ledesma; and Blade Auto Center President Robertson Sy-Tan.

The Negosyo Fair featured different business opportunities entrepreneurs can explore. It also featured talks, business ventures with low capital requirements, franchising opportunities, and tested products and business technologies that are ready for commercialization.

The learning session covered topics fit for aspiring business owners including operational efficiency, customer service, and expanding market reach from industry experts namely VJ Africa, CEO of Product IO, a startup that aims to enable Micro SMEs in the Philippines and the region to “Survive and Thrive” in this digital-dependent society; Joselito Miguel B. Favis, Account Manager for the Public Sector of Mynt, a FinTech startup wholly-owned by Globe Telecom; and Mejcris Lavarias, Associate Director of AdSpark Local, a Globe subsidiary providing digital and mobile marketing services; and Globe myBusiness Head of Managed Service Grace Anduiza.

Globe myBusiness

Product IO CEO VJ Africa, sharing his thoughts on how to operate businesses more efficiently.

Globe myBusiness also held a panel discussion led by Filipino journalist and “My Puhunan” TV Host Karen Davila, together with Globe myBusiness Ambassador RJ Ledesma of Mercato; DTI Assistant Regional Director Teresita De Lima; Ricca Del Rosario of Half the Price; and Blade Autocenter’s Robertson Sy-Tan, where they discussed tips for small – medium business owners, such as starting businesses with minimal capital, and turning simple everyday problems into big opportunities.

Attendees were also introduced to a wide suite of innovative apps that make business easier:

Globe myBusiness

Mynt Account Manager for the Public Sector Miguel B. Favis sharing with the attendees the various ways Mynt can provide financial resources to entrepreneurs.

For operational efficiency, Globe introduced myBusiness Tracker, which allows owners to keep an eye on deliveries and vehicles in real-time; myShopkeeper, which lets owners monitor sales and inventory in real-time; myBusiness Security Bundle for a CCTV package; GSuite and OS365 for easy business and Microsoft Office tools; GCash Powerpay, an automated salary disbursement program; and Fuse, a loan program for business expansions.

For customer service, guests were introduced to digital solutions such as Auto Appointment Reminder, Queuing Solution, and Canvas, which turns paperwork into digital forms. Meanwhile, for market reach, guests learned about Adblast and Auto SMS Blast solution, which lets them reach more customers through SMS; and myWebsite, a website-building tool. Globe myBusiness also offered exclusive mobile, broadband, and bundled packages for event participants.

To learn more about Globe myBusiness, visit the website at mybusiness.globe.com.ph, call the hotline at 730-1010, or visit any Globe store. (Press release)

Globe myBusiness

AdSpark Local Associate Director Mejcris Lavarias talks about the importance of digital marketing and shares her tips given the current Philippine digital landscape.

No Comments on Globe myBusiness Academy brings top industry experts to DTI’s Negosyo Fair

NRCE focuses on “future-proofing” retail

The 24th National Retail Conference and Stores Asia Expo (NRCE) is all set to provide retailers with tips and solutions on how to prepare for the fast-changing digital age with…

The 24th National Retail Conference and Stores Asia Expo (NRCE) is all set to provide retailers with tips and solutions on how to prepare for the fast-changing digital age with this year’s theme “Future-Proofing Retail.”

The annual NRCE is the Philippine Retailers Association’s flagship project and will be held on August 10-11 at the SM Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City.

Tagged as the biggest and most important retail even in the country, the NRCE will feature talks and panel discussions from industry experts and personalities led by Leyte Representative and TV personality Lucy Torres-Gomez, Senator Sonny Angara and Rustan Supercenters CEO Irwin Lee as keynote speakers for the two-day conference.

Topics of the conference will cover new trends in retailing, branding design, future of shopping malls, creating niche in diverse market, online retailing, fashion retailing, impact of music in the marketplace, food retailing, and engaging the millennial consumers.

24th National Retail Conference and Stores Asia Expo

Confirmed speakers and presenters include FILSCAP Vice president and noted TV personality and musician Jim Paredes, Zalora CEO Paolo Campos, Google Philippines Marketing Manager Gabby Roxas, Springtime Design Limited Creative and Managing Director Chris Dingcong, and Organization Development Advisor Susan Grace Rivera.

Two panels composed of young and upcoming retailers such as Apartment 8 President Sheira Lim, Sunnies Café Finance Director Eric Dee Jr., and Genki Sushi Owner Eric Teng will discuss the new generation of retailers and food retail as mall anchors.

New for this year’s NRCE is the launch of the Supermarket Track dedicated to supermarkets and food retailers which will discuss modern retailing with a responsive Department of Trade, spatial planning, and supermarket trends in Asia Pacific.

NRCE 2017 Overall Chairman Lorenzo Formoso says, “This year’s event aims to create a deeper understanding of modern retail as well as open more opportunities for partnerships and networking.”

Back to back with the conference is the only focused and dedicated retail suppliers’ expo showcasing the “tools for global retailing” from over 100 exhibitors offering products and solutions for the retail industry such as Retail Solutions, E-Commerce & M-Commerce, Shop Fittings & Store Designs, Digital Marketing, Commercial and Real Estate Developers, Web Developers, Non-traditional Advertising, Financial Services, Storage and Distribution, HR Solutions, and Billboard Locations among others.

For registration, sponsorship and exhibit inquiries, please contact the PRA Executive Secretariat email: marketing@philretailers.com, specialprojects@philretailers.com, or visit www.nrce-ph.com. (Press release)

No Comments on NRCE focuses on “future-proofing” retail

AirAsia launches MyCorporate, a suite of products for the business traveler

AirAsia has unveiled a bundle of products aimed at servicing the needs of the business traveler. The 3 bundles take into account the requirement of the traveler and the company…

AirAsia has unveiled a bundle of products aimed at servicing the needs of the business traveler. The 3 bundles take into account the requirement of the traveler and the company budget: Fare Only, Corporate Lite and Corporate Full Flex.

The Fare Only bundle only includes the air fare, with add-ons available for a fee.

The Corporate Lite bundle includes air fare, a complimentary meal, standard seat assignment and dedicated check-in counter. Guests can also change their flight once up to 24 hours before departure with no flight change fee.

Corporate bundles

The Corporate Full Flex bundle includes air fare, a complimentary meal, Hot Seat assignment, 20kg baggage allowance, dedicated check-in counter, XPress immigration, Xpress Baggage, Premium Red Lounge access (only for those departing from KLIA2 in Kuala Lumpur), priority boarding, travel insurance (only applicable to flights departing from Malaysia and Thailand) and full flexibility with unlimited flight changes up to two hours before departure with no flight change fee.

AirAsia My Corporate

Corporate Full Flex guests will also be able to enjoy GoShow, an exclusive product allowing them to stand by on an earlier flight on the same day, to the same destination, with no added fees or fare charges.

Companies signed up to MyCorporate will have access to a convenient, easy-to-use online booking system and comprehensive reporting to keep track of corporate traveling expenses.

Needs of traveler, company

AirAsia Group CEO Tan Sri Tony Fernandes said, “With our extensive network and frequency across the group, we have seen a rise in the number of those traveling for business on AirAsia. With the launch of MyCorporate, we believe we have a program that serves the needs of both the traveler and the company to further capture our share of this important segment.”

AirAsia Group Corporate Sales Head Barry Klipp said, “This is the next evolution for AirAsia corporate products. With MyCorporate, we are better able to offer the right product to our corporate client’s needs and budgets. Whether they require just a seat with no add-ons, a Lite product with basic benefits or if they wish to take advantage of our fully loaded product designed to make business travel more convenient and flexible, including our latest offering GoShow.” (Press Release)

No Comments on AirAsia launches MyCorporate, a suite of products for the business traveler

Smart retailers turn digital with mobile app

Smart Communications has made it easier for partner-retailers to keep track of their sales, receivables, inventory, and manage their cash flow better with the introduction of the Ka-Partner Retailer mobile…

Smart Communications has made it easier for partner-retailers to keep track of their sales, receivables, inventory, and manage their cash flow better with the introduction of the Ka-Partner Retailer mobile application. The initiative is in line with the digital transformation that Smart is implementing across its operations and the way it does business.

“Smart is in the midst of a digital pivot. Our partner-retailers play a very important role in our business. They are our frontliners in the community and it is imperative that we bring them along in this digital journey. With the mobile app designed exclusively for them, our partner-retailers will be able to digitize the way they do business,” said Alex O. Caeg, head of Wireless Consumer Division Sales and Distribution at Smart.

Retailers play a crucial role in Smart’s growth. Together, they account for 80-85 percent of Smart’s total prepaid revenues.

Smart Kapartner Retailer app

Retailer-friendly app

The app is retailer-friendly, making navigation through the menu and browsing through the various load offers for selling easy. It also helps the retailer track his load wallet balance inventory and prompt him if the balance is already below the threshold. The app’s digital ledger feature effectively automates sales records, allowing the retailer to track his load sales without manually recording these daily transactions on actual paper. It also allows him to track the account receivables from his patrons for better cashflow management.

New features have been added to the app allowing the user to check on historical performance not only of total sales but also of repeat customers, and to view digital ads of the latest brand offers and promos from Smart, TNT, and Sun.

Faster, more efficient

For the next phase, the retailer will be able to place an order from the distributor through the app for faster and more efficient way of purchasing load credits.

Smart has more than a million partner-retailers across the country. In recognition of their valuable contribution to the business, Smart has been giving incentives for every sale made via its Ka-Partner Rewards Program, with a number of retailers each year becoming instant millionaires.

Every P100 Smart Load they sell every day is converted to one point. These points can be accumulated and used to avail of instant prizes and services such as free SMS and airtime, load wallet value, or e-raffle tickets for prizes of up to P1 million. (Press Release)

No Comments on Smart retailers turn digital with mobile app

Globe sets up 41 libreng tawag and charging stations in Leyte, Samar, and Bohol

Globe Telecom has put up 41 Libreng Tawag and Charging stations across the provinces of Leyte, Samar, and Bohol to assist victims of the recent earthquake with their communication needs….

Globe Telecom has put up 41 Libreng Tawag and Charging stations across the provinces of Leyte, Samar, and Bohol to assist victims of the recent earthquake with their communication needs.

Due to the damage sustained by electric power stations, there is still no electricity in the areas, leaving residents with limited means to charge their mobile phones and make calls.

The Libreng Tawag and Charging stations are open from 9 am – 5 pm and are located in the following areas:

LEYTE (9 LIBRENG CHARGE/TAWAG stations)

1. Ormoc City – Brgy Cogon near Jollibee
2. Ormoc City – Quadrangle
3. Baybay City – Plaza Rizal
4. Hilongos – SF Commercial, Hilongos
5. Tacloban City – Sonny John Store, Brgy Manlurip along highway infornt of Sunnyville
6. Tacloban City – Marcab Store, Tacloban City new bus terminal
7. Tacloban City – Sacay Store, San Salvador St. Brgy. Puri Palo, Leyte
8. Tacloban City – Rose Tan Store, Don Gorgonia St. V&G Tacloban
9. Kananga – In front of Liz Barbecue, Real st. corner Larrazabal St.

Globe Libreng Tawag

Newly-activated libreng tawag and libreng charging station in Kananga, Leyte

SOUTHERN LEYTE (2 LIBRENG CHARGE/TAWAG stations)

1. Maasin City – Andoks, in front of Mang Tinapay
2. Sogod – Plaza Rizal

SAMAR (5 LIBRENG CHARGE/TAWAG stations)

1. Calbayog City – Nijaga Park, Gomez St
2. Catbalogan City – Color Print Store, Allen Avenue
3. Catarman – Catarman Park Near City Hall
4. Borongan – Borongan North, Siongco st.
5. Guian – Near Tourism office

BOHOL (25 LIBRENG CHARGE STATIONS)

1. Barangay Sta Cruz, Calape
2. Barangay Danao, Panglao
3. Barangay Tayong, Loay
4. Barangay Tabajan, Guindulman
5. Barangay Guinacot, Guindulman
6. Barangay Poblacion, Anda
7. Barangay La Union, Candijay
8. Barangay Poblacion, Alicia
9. Barangay Buenavista, Carmen
10. Barangay Poblacion, Carmen
11. Barangay Tejero, Jagna
12. Barangay Larapan, Jagna
13. Barangay Poblacion, Jagna
14. Barangay Poblacion, Duero
15. Barangay Panghagban, Buenavista
16. Barangay Luyo, Dimiao
17. Barangay Poblacion, Buenavista
18. Barangay Poblacion, Getafe
19. Barangay San Jose, Talibon
20. Barangay Poblacion, Bien Unido
21. Barangay San Roque, Mabini
22. Barangay Rosario, Inabanga
23. Barangay Luyo, Inabanga
24. Barangay Lapacan, Inabanga
25. Barangay Poblacion, Pitogo island

No Comments on Globe sets up 41 libreng tawag and charging stations in Leyte, Samar, and Bohol

Among Cebu CEOs, technology solutions have yet to make an impact: survey

Despite innovations in the field of finance, e-commerce, consumer services, transport and logistics, only a third of Cebu entrepreneurs believe that technology should be a business priority. Results of the…

Despite innovations in the field of finance, e-commerce, consumer services, transport and logistics, only a third of Cebu entrepreneurs believe that technology should be a business priority.

Results of the PwC Cebu 2017 CEO Survey showed that only 35 percent of business leaders look at how technology can help in the company’s overall strategic plan.

Less than half or only 48 percent of the 108 Cebu CEOs surveyed by Isla Lipana & Co./PwC Philippines feel threatened by the speed of technological advancements.

PWC Cebu CEO survey

Factors for successful innovation

The sentiments of Cebu businessmen are in contrast to the 80 percent of 2015 Philippine CEO survey respondents who consider technology breakthroughs like robotics, automated supply chain, enterprise solutions, and digital platforms as crucial to business transformation.

A slightly higher number or 50 percent of Cebu CEOs, which PwC Philippines calls Cebu’s next generation business leaders, see the need to continuously innovate to stay relevant for the long term.

The CEOs cited strong visionary leadership, right culture, willingness to challenge norms and take risks, capacity for creativity, and close collaboration with customers as factors for a successful innovation.

PwC Cebu 2017 CEO Survey

CEO SURVEY FINDINGS. Aldie Garcia, PwC Philippines lead branch operations partner, presents findings of the PwC Cebu 2017 CEO Survey. On stage are Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Melanie Ng and PwC Philippines chairman and senior partner Atty. Alexander Cabrera.

Technology as threat, opportunity

Aldie Garcia, PwC Philippines lead branch operations partner, said that for these CEOs, technology is both a threat and an opportunity.

“Our next generation business leaders believe the first to adopt will be the first to succeed,” he added.

Atty. Alexander Cabrera, PwC Philippines chairman and senior partner, said during a forum to share survey findings that “building a lasting legacy for the organization and the people they serve while growing the business is fundamental to our CEOs’ success.”

Vision for Cebu

Sought for their thoughts on how they envision a new Cebu, CEOs said focus should be on stronger partnerships between government and the private sector (83 percent), better investment incentives (63 percent), and maintaining and growing the local Cebu brands (49 percent).

PwC also found out that close to half of business owners were not originally from Cebu but moved here because of trade and economic opportunities.

Many of them or 77 percent worked for top companies as junior executives (40 percent), management executives (32 percent) , and board executives (10 percent) before going into business for themselves.

Series of CEO surveys

The survey was conducted by PwC Philippines in partnership with the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) and marked the first of a series to be done on Cebu business leaders.

Melanie Ng, CCCI president, said the undertaking is “envisioned to benchmark the changes in how our CEOs think and innovate.”

She added that the CEO Survey will provide a glimpse into the entrepreneurial journey of business owners that hopefully will inspire more entrepreneurs in the region. Respondents in the first CEO survey represent about 12 percent of CCCI members.

Other CEO Survey findings

Other survey findings showed that:

  • Majority of CEOs started their business in trading but have diversified to manufacturing, retail and wholesale distribution, and consumer and food beverage.
  • Over the next three years, business owners plan to enter the following industries: real estate and construction, tourism, food manufacturing, and consumer retail and technology.
  • Business leaders consider infrastructure, tourism, and technology as industries that need priority.

Survey presentation

PWC Cebu CEO survey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No Comments on Among Cebu CEOs, technology solutions have yet to make an impact: survey

Smart programs shine at Philippine Quill Awards

Programs by Smart Communications to improve the daily lives of Filipinos through mobile technology were recognized recently at the 15th Philippine Quill Awards. Smart received second-runner up honors for Company…

Programs by Smart Communications to improve the daily lives of Filipinos through mobile technology were recognized recently at the 15th Philippine Quill Awards.

Smart received second-runner up honors for Company of the Year, as well as 12 Excellence and 9 Merit Awards. Smart’s winning programs sought to make the mobile internet experience more accessible, affordable, and meaningful to Filipinos; use technology to enhance education, disaster preparedness and response, health services, and customer experience; and engage the workforce better through digital technologies.

The Philippine Quill Awards is organized annually by the International Association of Business Communicators-Philippines to recognize excellence in professional communication.

15th Philippine Quill Awards

Smart received second-runner up honors for Company of the Year, as well as 12 Excellence and 9 Merit Awards in the 15th Philippine Quill Awards.

Smart programs

Winning Excellence Awards were the Batibot educational app which is now available on both Android and iOS platforms, the Disaster Communications Summit, GigaSurf campaign, Launchpad program for the youth, #OwnIt campaign, Smart Bro’s iPad Plan 599 campaign, Smart Pokemon GO, Smart University Gamified Mobile Learning program for employees, Sun Deserve Mo ‘To campaign, TNT Super Panalo Day, Welcome Change campaign, and the use of the internal social media platform for employees called Workplace by Facebook.

Receiving Merit Awards were the AlDub for TNT campaign, All New Smart Bro Plans, Employee Rockstars Program, the disaster preparedness video series for kids called Maging Laging Handa, SHINE OS+ (Secured Health Information Network and Exchange), Smart’s efforts to train Filipinos on Android app development for free, Smart Flagship Store, Sun First Job Problems campaign, and the TechnoCart and School-in-a-Bag programs. (Press release)

No Comments on Smart programs shine at Philippine Quill Awards

M Lhuillier taps Starmobile to build custom smartphones

Philippine smart devices brand Starmobile has been chosen by leading pawnshop and remittance chain MLhuillier to create a customized Android smartphone for its employees and customers. Powered by Smart Prepaid…

Philippine smart devices brand Starmobile has been chosen by leading pawnshop and remittance chain MLhuillier to create a customized Android smartphone for its employees and customers.

Powered by Smart Prepaid SIMs, the modified Starmobile PLAY Five units are pre-installed with MLhuillier’s MLWallet app, which the Cebu-based company hopes will further empower its workforce to embrace the increasing influence of mobile and digital technologies on the remittance industry.

Starmobile

STARMOBILE. (From left) Smart Department Head/VP, National Key Accounts Group Precy Katigbak, Smart SVP/Head for Wireless and Distribution Alex Caeg, MLhuillier GM for Luzon/NCR Lorenzo Escaño, Starmobile CEO Joey Uy, and Starmobile President Uly Lao, wave “Five” to mark Starmobile’s 5th year of operations

Established in 2011, Starmobile is the mobile devices division of Star Telecom Alliance Resources, Inc. (STAR, Inc.). It is founded by telco industry experts with extensive experience in retail and product development.

Since it first offered Android devices, Starmobile has become the winningest Philippine smartphone brand with a slew of innovation awards from reputable media outfits. The company’s flagship KNIGHT series, has won top awards since 2013—a feat that has not been replicated by any local device company.

Learn more about Starmobile and its line of smartphones and tablets by visiting www.starmobile.com.ph or log on to facebook.com/starmobilephones. (Press Release)

 

No Comments on M Lhuillier taps Starmobile to build custom smartphones

Cebu Landmasters CEO named Entrepreneur of the Year

Jose Soberano III, who steered his homegrown business Cebu Landmasters, Inc. to an initial public offering (IPO) earlier this year, was picked Entrepreneur of the Year during the 2017 Grand…

Jose Soberano III, who steered his homegrown business Cebu Landmasters, Inc. to an initial public offering (IPO) earlier this year, was picked Entrepreneur of the Year during the 2017 Grand Chamber Awards.

Soberano received the award from the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) during the Grand Chamber Awards and Fellowship Night last June 30 at Marco Polo Plaza Cebu.

The awards night capped the Cebu Business Month 2017 celebration.

Soberano, chairman and chief executive officer of Cebu Landmasters, Inc., left Ayala Land in 2000 to build what is now the top local housing developer in Metro Cebu.

Jose Soberano III

Jose Soberano III speaks during his awarding as the Entrepreneur of the Year during the 2017 Grand Chamber Awards.

Prestigious award

The Entrepreneur of the Year is the most prestigious among the five awards bestowed by the chamber. The other awards are Corporate Social Responsibility Institution, Small Business Entrepreneur, Countryside Entrepreneur, and Young Entrepreneur. The awardees are chosen by the CCCI board of trustees and past presidents.

CCCI President Melanie Ng said Soberano distinguished himself as the only Cebuano entrepreneur to bring his company public.

“Receiving this most prestigious award is thanks to my whole Cebu Landmasters team whom I consider family. They are the main reason why CLI is where it is today: number one in Cebu and soon to be number one in Visayas and Mindanao,” Soberano said in a speech during the awarding

P12 billion expansion

Soberano announced earlier this year a P12 billion expansion in the Visayas and Mindanao to address the need for housing, offices, and commercial spaces. CLI has simultaneous development projects in Cebu, Bacolod, Dumaguete, Cagayan de Oro, and Davao for 2017.

Saying he has confidence in the economic prospects of the Visayas and Mindanao, Soberano urged local entrepreneurs to become champions in their turf and, at the same time, leverage opportunities beyond Cebu and the region. (Press Release)

No Comments on Cebu Landmasters CEO named Entrepreneur of the Year

International hotelier Brian Connelly to lead Marco Polo Plaza Cebu

Marco Polo Hotels has appointed international hotelier Brian Connelly as general manager of its deluxe urban resort hotel Marco Polo Plaza Cebu. Connelly served various leadership roles spanning over 38…

Marco Polo Hotels has appointed international hotelier Brian Connelly as general manager of its deluxe urban resort hotel Marco Polo Plaza Cebu.

Connelly served various leadership roles spanning over 38 years with prominent hotels and resorts in Asia Pacific, Middle East and the United States, making him the ideal successor for Cebu’s hospitality landmark perched atop the hills of Cebu city.

A Bachelor of Science graduate in Hotel and Restaurant Administration from Oklahoma State University, Connelly most recently held the position of general manager for Angsana Laguna Phuket & Angsana Villa Resort in Thailand. Earlier in his career, Connelly held senior management roles around the globe with Hilton Asia Pacific and Middle East, Oakwood Asia Pacific, Fairmont Hotels Middle East and Intercontinental Hotels in Thailand and China respectively.

Marco Polo Plaza Cebu general manager Brian Connelly.

Marco Polo Plaza Cebu general manager Brian Connelly.

Enhancing the brand

“It is exciting to be on this beautiful island of Cebu. I am honored to have the opportunity to be General Manager of this wonderful hotel, Marco Polo Plaza. I look forward to continuing the success of the hotel and working with the team to grow and enhance the operation. Marco Polo Hotels has a fantastic reputation in the Philippines and I look forward to further enhancing our brand,” Connelly said about his new position.

Connelly’s goals will include ensuring the hotel continues to deliver profits across all market segments and build the brand’s presence in the Cebu and feeder markets.

Passionate leadership

“We are delighted to welcome Brian to our award-winning Marco Polo Hotels family. Brian’s penchant for Asian hospitality embellished with his eagle-eye vision for driving profitable business and passionate leadership will help guide the property in its continuous improvement programmes as well as strengthen its leading position in the city of Cebu,” said Philippe Caretti, Vice President for Operations of Marco Polo Hotels.

Connelly is a member of the Chaine des Rotisseurs, the International Food & Wine Society, and is the founding member of Son of Bacchus. He is an oenophile who enjoys reading and working out at the gym.

More information on Marco Polo Plaza is available at mpplaza@marcopolohotels.com and marcopolohotels.com. Real time social media updates are posted on facebook.com/marcopolocebu or on Twitter at @5StarInCebu.

1 Comment on International hotelier Brian Connelly to lead Marco Polo Plaza Cebu

Accenture launches rapid innovation center in the Philippines

Systems that detect whether mining vehicles are overloaded or its drivers exhausted to an augmented reality platform to train people how to operate machinery or decorate a house were​ put…

Systems that detect whether mining vehicles are overloaded or its drivers exhausted to an augmented reality platform to train people how to operate machinery or decorate a house were​ put on display as Accenture launched today its rapid innovation center in the Philippines.

Liquid Studio is an “open center where clients co-innovate with Accenture engineers to turn concepts into applications and solutions with speed and agility,” the company said.

While it is a venue where Accenture clients can work on innovation to stay ahead in business, it is also a place where the company’s workers can be trained or work on the latest technologies like robotics, artificial intelligence and augmented reality, said Ambe Tierro, senior managing director and technology lead, Accenture in the Philippines.

Accenture Liquid Studio Philippines

ACCENTURE LIQUID STUDIO. Leading the launch of the Accenture Liquid Studio in the Philippines are (from left) Ambe Tierro, senior managing director and technology lead, Accenture in the Philippines; Accenture Technology Services group chief executive Bhaskar Ghosh; and JP Palpallatoc, managing director and Accenture digital lead in the Philippines.

Technology innovation hub

It will also serve as a hub in the technology ecosystem in the Philippines, she said.

JP Palpallatoc, managing director and Accenture digital lead in the Philippines, said the Liquid Studio would be a place where the company can co-innovate with universities and schools as well as startups.

The center will help answer the question “how do you use technology to create business value?” said Accenture Technology Services group chief executive Bhaskar Ghosh.

During Thursday’s launch at the facility, which occupies an entire floor with about 2,000 square meters in the Uptown Place 3 at the BGC in Taguig City, Accenture showcased technologies on the connected home, artificial intelligence, internet of things, drones, analytics, robotics, and augmented reality.

Speed up development

The rapid innovation approach with agile methodologies can hasten development time from months to a matter of days or weeks, Palpallatoc said.

Among those they put on demo for journalists who covered the launch was a system that is able to scan faces and identify the person, take note of personal characteristics, and determine the mood: whether he or she is happy. It can be deployed in advertising displays that can tailor the marketing material based on data captured by the system.

That system was built in a matter of days by an Accenture team member. Also built quickly and shown on demo was an internal chatbot platform on which the company can provision systems or work on technical tasks just by messaging.

Data analytics

The company also showcased a mini-racing track with toy cars that used the Oracle cloud to display a dashboard of data analytics gathered by the toy vehicles. It shows how using analytics can help managers determine such things as vehicle fuel efficiency. They also showed a model of a system that can monitor and manage mining vehicles. It can guard against overloading and offer data to increase operational efficiency. It can even determine whether the driver is already exhausted by, among other things, monitoring for micro-sleeps via a camera.

The company also showed a crop monitoring system that used sensors, drones and thermal cameras to monitor the health of plants.

In demonstrating the use of augmented reality, the company showed how using an app, people will be able to focus the camera on a car engine and know its parts and how to do such things as replace the battery. The information is overlaid on the actual display of the vehicle. They also demonstrated how using Microsoft’s Holo Lens, people can preview how furniture, carpets and other accessories will look in the actual room.

Palpallatoc said augmented reality is a great technology to tap in training workers. He said it can provide a safer and cheaper alternative to working on an actual equipment.

Social benefits of technology

The Liquid Studio is part of a network of facilities throughout the world. This makes sure innovation is available to clients in its various facilities globally, said Ghosh.

During the launch, Ghosh highlighted the social benefits of technology by showing how an employee in Manila with hearing and speech impairment was able to work with colleagues in India by tapping AI to facilitate video communication. This, Ghosh said, will enable more people to join the workforce. He said it will enable managers to have a more diverse employee pool, including those who previously would not have been able to work.

No Comments on Accenture launches rapid innovation center in the Philippines

Filipino Homes opens new office in Mandaue City

Real estate portal Filipino Homes tied up with Skyscraper Realty to put up its eighth in Cebu and 22nd office nationwide at JCentre Mall in Mandaue City. Anthony Leuterio, president…

Real estate portal Filipino Homes tied up with Skyscraper Realty to put up its eighth in Cebu and 22nd office nationwide at JCentre Mall in Mandaue City.

Anthony Leuterio, president and CEO of multi-awarded Leuterio Realty and Brokerage, said Filipino Homes is a one-stop-shop for real estate buyers and sellers.

Although it already provides an extensive online network, Filipino Homes complements this with actual offices where prospective clients can visit and get advice from real estate agents, look at listings, or report problems.

Filipino Homes Mandaue

MANDAUE OFFICE. Skyscraper president and CEO Gaylord Tingzon (left) and Leuterio Realty and Brokerage president and CEO Anthony Leuterio during the opening the Filipino Homes office at JCentre Mall in Mandaue City.

Property portal

“Our goal is to create the biggest property portal, through our website and also in specific places where they can meet with agents and get good advice,” he added.

Skyscraper Realty decided to open a Filipino Homes in Mandaue because it is next to Cebu City in terms of economic development.

“There’s really a lot of activities happening in Mandaue City,” said Skyscraper president and CEO Gaylord Tingzon, citing the 20-hectare joint venture Mandani Bay project by Hongkong Land and Taft Properties and the Gatewalk Central partnership between AboitizLand and Ayala Land.

Leuterio-Skyscraper partnership

The partnership with Filipino Homes allows Skyscraper Realty access to a full listing of properties nationwide.

“The good thing about Filipino Homes is that we can sell properties nationwide because of our more than 20 branches throughout the country. We have more than 50,000 agents helping each other close a sale and assist clients. Even if you’re in Cebu and you have clients in Davao, someone from Filipino Homes Davao will assist them,” he added.

Real estate brokers accredited by Leuterio with 30 to 50 sales agents under them can use the Filipino Homes trademark when they open an office.

Leuterio said he calls them franchise partners and they can use the Filipino Homes logo and network.

Filipino Homes Mandaue

PHYSICAL OFFICE. Although it already provides an extensive online network, Filipino Homes complements this with actual offices where prospective clients can visit and get advice from real estate agents, look at listings, or report problems.

Filipino Homes Mandaue

Filipino Homes Mandaue is also looking for more real estate sales agents.

Tingzon said they already have more than 50 sellers, 20 of which are active, but the plan is to increase the number to 100 sales agents.

He added that they want to build a big team because there are a lot of projects in Mandaue, citing JCentre Mall’s 40-storey tower project, mix-use project of Cebu Landmasters near Oakridge Business Park, walk-up condo in AS Fortuna St. by Primary Homes, and the bestselling Midpoint Residences towers.

1 Comment on Filipino Homes opens new office in Mandaue City

Smart named Asia’s top digital services provider

“Welcome Change” also named Best Brand Campaign at Asia Communication Awards For its efforts to boost its network and make relevant digital services accessible to Filipinos, PLDT wireless unit Smart…

“Welcome Change” also named Best Brand Campaign at Asia Communication Awards

For its efforts to boost its network and make relevant digital services accessible to Filipinos, PLDT wireless unit Smart Communications was named Digital Service Provider of the Year at the Asia Communication Awards (ACA) ceremony held recently in Singapore.

The ACA recognizes outstanding performance by Asian carriers, multimedia content providers, vendors, and other communication service providers. It is conducted annually by London-based industry publication Total Telecom.

Best Brand Campaign

Smart’s Welcome Change campaign – which communicated the company’s digital pivot and encouraged Filipinos to empower themselves through mobile innovations – won the Best Brand Campaign recognition.

Janet Watkin, head of the ACA panel of judges and CEO of a customer experience consultancy, said simply making it to the shortlist was already an achievement, given the challenges faced by the telecommunications industry.

“Doing business has become more digital, global, social, and mobile, and the marketplace is vaster and more crowded than it has ever been. Alongside changes in technology and competition are the changing expectations and behavior of customers. As such, making it onto the shortlist for the Asia Communication Awards is indeed a formidable achievement. To win requires that something extra special that is a cut above the rest,” she said.

Smart Asia Communication Awards

Smart, represented by PLDT SG country manager James Melon, receives the first of two awards at the ACA in Singapore.

Digital transformation

“We are honored to receive these awards from a prestigious institution that understands the rapid changes sweeping through the telco industry. This recognition further inspires us to intensify our pursuit for digital transformation and to bring the benefits of the digital life to more Filipinos,” said PLDT and Smart chairman and CEO Manny V. Pangilinan.

Smart has a multi-pronged approach in encouraging Filipinos to welcome the digital change – it continuously improves and expands its network while making available devices, relevant content, and value-packed service offers to its subscribers.

In 2016, Smart and PLDT launched a $1-billion digital transformation program to enable their fixed and mobile networks to support the rising demand for digital services. Smart has committed to progressively deploy LTE services to 95% of the country’s cities and municipalities by end-2018. To do this, the company is combining low-band frequencies for better indoor penetration and wider coverage, with high-band frequencies for additional capacity. These frequencies include those obtained through the acquisition of the telco businesses of San Miguel Corp.

Smart has finished its LTE deployment in Boracay and Metro Davao, while efforts are ongoing in Metro Cebu and Metro Manila. Internal tests show Smart’s LTE service consistently increasing in speeds and registering improved indoor data coverage. Third-party crowd-sourced tests also show that Smart offers the fastest LTE service in the Philippines.

Because not many Filipinos can afford LTE handsets, Smart has partnered with various device manufacturers to introduce affordable LTE devices with network-compatible frequencies.

Welcome Change

To communicate its digital transformation, Smart in mid-2016 unveiled a new logo resembling the Greek letter Delta which means change. Smart also launched the Welcome Change campaign to encourage more Filipinos to discover what the digital life has to offer.

To expand its library of relevant content, the company has partnered with the likes of iflix, Cignal, ABS-CBN’s iWantTV, and Fox.

On top of these efforts, Smart continues to introduce affordable and value-packed products such as GigaSurf50 which offers 1 GB of data plus 300 MB for YouTube and other apps, as well as unlimited SMS to all networks. All this is valid for three days for only P50.

Smart LTE network

Smart is in the middle of a network transformation program which seeks to bring LTE to 95% of the country’s cities and towns by end-2018.

Digital technology for development

Smart has won several awards at the ACA, including Operator of the Year in 2011 and 2012.

Last year, Smart TechnoCart – a mobile digital laboratory donated to public schools to help develop literacy among kindergarten students – won the Social Contribution Award. This is part of Smart’s efforts to bring digital technology to underserved communities to aid their development.

Smart’s donation of digital tools and content, even in remote areas without electricity, enable more Filipinos to be part of the global knowledge economy. Depending on the terrain, the learning packages come in the form of the TechnoCart or a backpack called School-in-a-Bag. These contain devices such as tablets, laptops, projectors, pocket Wi-Fis, and solar chargers.

More importantly, the devices are preloaded with learning tools such as the Batibot mobile application co-developed by Smart. This is the first educational app for kids in the Filipino language that is aligned with the kindergarten curriculum of the Department of Education. (Press Release) 

No Comments on Smart named Asia’s top digital services provider

Cebu business group launches CBM 2017

As a campaign to help bring businesses to the next level, Cebu Business Month (CBM) 2017 has lined up a host of activities that seeks to equip companies with the…

As a campaign to help bring businesses to the next level, Cebu Business Month (CBM) 2017 has lined up a host of activities that seeks to equip companies with the tools they need for growth.

Melanie Ng, Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) president, said during the CBM 2017 Grand Opening Salvo last Friday that the month-long event aims to inspire businesses to contribute to the competitive advantage of Cebu in the global economy through development in the areas of entrepreneurship, productivity, and technology.

CBM 2017, which marks the event’s 21st year, carries the theme “Step Up Cebu” for Sustainable Technology, Entrepreneurship, and Productivity for the Upliftment of Cebu.

Cebu Business Month 2017

CEBU BUSINESS MONTH. Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Melanie Ng (4th from left) and Cebu Vice Governor Agnes Magpale (6th from left) flank CCCI brand ambassador Kenneth Cobonpue as they lead CCCI officials during the opening of the annual Cebu Business Month.

Expand business, be next big thing

Charles Kenneth Co, CBM 2017 chair, said the month-long event that serves as the yearly highlight for Cebu business is ready to help entrepreneurs who want to expand their business, tourism stakeholders who are looking to entice more visitors, and startups who dream to become the next big thing.

During the event, Ng also announced the selection of Kenneth Cobonpue as CCCI brand ambassador.

The choice of Cobonpue was in line with the business group’s quest to increase awareness among members, especially millennials, of CCCI’s vision and mission and to have someone represent the best of Cebu with the rest of the world.

Homegrown but global brand

She said the world renowned designer embodies the chamber brand, one that is homegrown but global.

Also during the CBM 2017 Grand Opening Salvo last June 1, business executives unveiled the business group’s priority focus areas of tourism, entrepreneurship, and ICT-BPM.

No Comments on Cebu business group launches CBM 2017

Smart mobile data speeds take lead in PH: JP Morgan

‘Significant momentum’ seen for Smart LTE, 3G speeds, according to JP Morgan PLDT wireless subsidiary Smart Communications posted the highest average download speeds for both 3G and LTE, amid steadily…

‘Significant momentum’ seen for Smart LTE, 3G speeds, according to JP Morgan

PLDT wireless subsidiary Smart Communications posted the highest average download speeds for both 3G and LTE, amid steadily improving scores through the months, the latest JP Morgan study showed.

JP Morgan’s Asia Network Quality study, which cited crowd-sourced data gathered by wireless coverage research firm OpenSignal, showed Smart LTE service leading nationwide in terms of speed, with average download speeds of 11.64 Mbps on the country level.

The May 2017 report also showed Smart leading across areas in terms of LTE service, with average download speeds of 12.52 Mbps in Metro Manila, 11.96 Mbps in the Visayas and 9.44 Mbps in South Luzon.

Significant momentum

“PLDT’s Smart has significant momentum across all circles measured. This likely implies a higher likelihood of market share gains going forward, with potentially better pricing power,” said JP Morgan in its study, which covers the months of February to April.

Smart also led in terms of 3G speeds nationwide, posting 2.29 Mbps average download speeds on a country level. Across areas, average download speeds on Smart’s 3G service were at 3.41 Mbps in Metro Manila, 1.74 Mbps in the Visayas, and 1.82 Mbps in South Luzon.

“There is still a lot of work to be done, but these test results show that our network improvement program is making progress. They are a testament to Smart’s commitment to continuously contribute to improving overall speeds in the country,” said Mario G. Tamayo, PLDT and Smart Senior Vice President for Network Planning and Engineering.

Re-equipping cell sites

Smart is re-equipping its cell sites to use low-frequency bands such as 700 MHz and 850 MHz to provide better indoor coverage. It is also deploying high-frequency bands like 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz to increase the cell sites’ capacity to handle more calls, texts, and ever-increasing mobile data traffic.

PLDT and Smart have committed to make LTE progressively available to 95% of the country’s cities and municipalities by the end of 2018.

“We have ongoing network improvements in Metro Manila, and we look forward to providing our subscribers there with better indoor LTE and 3G data signal, as well as better indoor 3G and 2G voice signal once these activities are done,” he said.

“With these improvements, our subscribers can live their digital lifestyles to the fullest, using a combination of LTE-ready devices, Smart LTE SIMs and Smart’s newest and fastest network, and be there like never before,” Tamayo added.

“We are asking for people’s patience and understanding as we are upgrading our network facilities. We assure you that we are taking steps to minimize the impact of these activities on our subscribers. In the end, our commitment to all our subscribers is that they will enjoy progressively better mobile data services in the next few months, particularly for those using LTE devices,” he said.

Average LTE speeds

Recent internal tests have shown improvements in speed in areas involved in the ongoing network rollout. Average LTE download speeds in northern Metro Manila, for example, are at 22.2 Mbps, while speeds are at 14.5 Mbps on average using Smart’s LTE service in southern Metro Manila. In Cebu, on the other hand, average download speeds on Smart’s LTE service are at 20.7 Mbps.

For these network improvement efforts, Smart was also recently named Digital Service Provider of the Year at the Asia Communication Awards, which recognizes outstanding performance by Asian carriers, multimedia content providers, vendors, and other communication service providers.

This comprehensive network modernization and expansion program is at the core of the PLDT group’s digital pivot. Smart’s network rollout took a big bulk of PLDT’s ramped-up capital expenditure program of P42.8 billion for 2016, which included the utilization of the new frequencies freed up with the acquisition of San Miguel Corporation’s telco assets. PLDT chair and CEO Manuel V. Pangilinan has announced a total capital expenditure of P46 billion this year. (Press Release)

No Comments on Smart mobile data speeds take lead in PH: JP Morgan

Type on the field below and hit Enter/Return to search