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Category: Business

Cebu City gets P9.6 billion monthly from IT/BPM; P20 billion monthly by 2019

The IT and BPM industry brings in P9.6 billion in new money to Cebu City every month. By the end of 2019, that figure will balloon to P20 billion monthly,…

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The IT and BPM industry brings in P9.6 billion in new money to Cebu City every month. By the end of 2019, that figure will balloon to P20 billion monthly, even by low estimates, said Cebu City consultant Joel Mari Yu.

Yu gave an overview of IT/BPM in Cebu City in yesterday’s Transformation Summit at the Marco Polo Plaza Cebu. Yu led the now defunct Cebu Investment Promotions Center, which has been credited with bringing in investments to the city.

“The numbers I’m showing you are modest assumptions based on first class data gathered from primary sources,” Yu prefaced his presentation.

Joel Mari Yu IT/BPM Cebu City

WHAT WE NEED TO DO. By dealing with aggravating circumstances for investors in Cebu, the target of 200,000 employees in the IT/BPM industry by 2019 can be easily achieved, said Cebu City consultant Joel Mari Yu.

Direct, indirect employment

The average salary of an IT employee in Cebu City is P30,000 a month, growing at 10% a year. From just 1 company in 2004, there are now 456 IT/BPM companies in Cebu City.

Assuming a 1:1 ratio between salaries and wages and operating expense, P7.6 billion in new money flows into Cebu monthly, Yu said. This is based on an employee count of 130,260 in 2016. The figure is also limited to Cebu City and does not take into account locations like Mandaue City and Lapu-Lapu City.

With a low estimate of P10,000 monthly rate for indirect employment, Cebu City gets P2 billion from indirect employment.

“Combine the 2, it’s 9.6 billion that flows into Cebu every month. Minimum. That’s on the assumption of 130,000 workers. There could be much more,” he said.

By targeting 200,000 employees in 2019, Cebu City will be getting P20 billion monthly.

Cebu IT/BPM growth

New money coming in

“This is new money coming in monthly,” Yu said. “When Shoemart makes money, they sell to Juan to pay Pedro. It’s recirculated money. But when you bring in a foreign investor, the money is remitted from abroad every month. Every single month they remit money to pay for their expenses, for their operations in this country.”

Today, Yu said, Cebu City gets P464 million in monthly rental income from IT/BPM companies. By 2019, that will grow to at least P700 million monthly.

Hitting the target of 200,000 IT/BPM employees in Cebu City by end of 2019 is achievable, Yu said. It will not even entail promotions and marketing.

Fix aggravating circumstances

“It is a matter of Cebu City dealing with aggravating circumstances facing the IT/BPM industry,” Yu said.

These key problems are transportation and traffic, security and safety, housing, and the need for a one-stop shop for processing employment papers. By dealing with these problems, Cebu City will get even more investments and locators.

“I do not like the former mayor because he was one of the bigger reasons why the CIPC closed shop,” Yu said to end his talk. “But he said something and I would like to end by quoting him. Can we do this? Together we can make it happen.”

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CEDFIT expands mandate, transforms into Cebu IT/BPM industry association

Seeing the need for an organization that will look after the interest of the information technology and business process management sector in Cebu, the Cebu Educational Development Foundation for Information…

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Seeing the need for an organization that will look after the interest of the information technology and business process management sector in Cebu, the Cebu Educational Development Foundation for Information Technology (CEDFIT) has transformed itself into the Cebu IT/BPM Organization (CIB.O).

CIB.O is a full industry association that will look after the interest of the sector, expanding from CEDFIT’s role of bridging the talent gap between industry and academe and taking on more roles like promotions and expanding collaboration.

CEDFIT was organized after the Cebu is IT Summit in 2001, when the business community and government agreed to work together to make Cebu a preferred IT destination. At that time, the biggest concern raised by industry was the gap in skills of graduates produced by schools in Cebu.

CEDFIT CIB.O

TRANSFORMATION SUMMIT. Officials raise a toast to mark the transformation of CEDFIT into the Cebu IT/BPM Organization or CIB.O during the Transformation Summit in Marco Polo Plaza Cebu. Leading the ceremony is CIB.O chairman Francis Monera.

Bridge academe-industry gap

CEDFIT has been able to partly bridge that gap with its industry programs, officials said. Cebu has a better employability grade, even compared with the National Capital Region. Other places in the country have an employability rate of 6% to 7%. Graduates in Cebu, on the other hand, have a 28% to 29% employability rating.

“CIB.O’s vision is to make Cebu as the preferred IT/BPM location for higher value IT and IT-enabled services,” said CIB.O chairman Francis Monera. “The organization’s mission is to develop and promote the strengths of Cebu and sustain the growth of its IT/BPM industry through driving collaboration, innovation, and excellence.”

Monera said CEDFIT had a lot of successful programs and worked on initiatives apart from talent development but “these were all ad hoc.” CIB.O will formalize and expand that, he said in a press conference held at the sidelines of the Transformation Summit at the Marco Polo Plaza Cebu.

Higher value IT services

CIB.O will complement the local industry by continuing to provide human resource development and taking on marketing and infrastructure promotion to make Cebu as preferred IT destination for higher value services. CIB.O has 128 members that comprise IT/BPM companies, academe, support groups, government agencies, and civil organizations.

Digital Transformation Summit chairman Jun Sa-a said a key initial advocacy of CIB.O would be security and data privacy, especially with the Data Privacy Law going into full effect this year.

Sustain industry growth

“It is high time that Cebu has a fulltime industry association after growing so big. We can now become more focused on the needs of our main IT/BPM players and help sustain the industry’s growth,” Sa-a said.

Monera said IT is the main driver behind Cebu’s robust growth. This can be seen with the growth from 2009 to 2014 exceeding the growth in the 20-year period before that.

Cebu now has 300 IT/BPM companies with 140,000 employees. CIB.O said Cebu is “aiming to capture higher value services such IT outsourcing, health information management, shared services, engineering services, banking and financial services, software development, research and development, among others.”

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MPTC appoints Allan Alfon CCLEC president and general manager

Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) has announced the appointment of Allan G. Alfon as president and general manager of the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corp. (CCLEC) effective May 2. CCLEC…

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Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) has announced the appointment of Allan G. Alfon as president and general manager of the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corp. (CCLEC) effective May 2.

CCLEC is MPTC’s subsidiary that will be responsible for overseeing the construction, operation and maintenance of the P27.9 billion Cebu Cordova Link Expressway (CCLEX).

Alfon is a Cebuano with more than 25 years of experience in construction and engineering management, business development, commercial leasing and property management, and network development/franchise management across major Philippine companies involved in real estate and property development, food franchising and oil and engineering.

Visayas, Mindanao infra projects

“It is with great pleasure that I welcome Allan G. Alfon to the Tollways group. Allan shall take the lead in pushing the completion and growing the pipeline of our infrastructure projects in the Visayas and Mindanao Regions. He shall also be a member of our senior Management Committee,” said MPTC President and CEO Rodrigo E. Franco.

Cebu Cordova Link Expressway

Groundbreaking of the Cebu Cordova Link Expressway.

Alfon is a licensed civil engineer from the University of San Carlos and has completed the management development program at the Asian Institute of Management.

“I am excited to lead the implementation of the CCLEX project and help realize the vision of the Metro Pacific tollways group. Together with my Cebu-based team, I look forward to working hand in hand with our partners, the Cebu City and Cordova LGUs in ensuring the safe and quality construction, operation, and maintenance ofthe CCLEX. As a Cebuano, I am personally committed to the success of this project knowing the economic and social benefits that it will generate for the people of Cebu and the Visayas region,” Alfon said.

Cebu team

Joining Alfon’s core team at CCLEC are experienced Cebu-based professionals including project manager Engr. Herbert Laboy, Atty. Rosemarie Versoza, Jasmin Suma-oy and Engr. Roman Ranises.

President Rodrigo Duterte led the CCLEX Groundbreaking Ceremonies last March 2. Joining the President were Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña, Cordova Mayor Therese Sitoy-Cho, cabinet officials and MPTC Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan.

Spanning about 8.5 kilometers, the CCLEX is a combined causeway and bridge toll facility between Mactan island and Cebu City initiated by MPTC together with the local government of Cebu City and Cordova. Upon its completion, the project is envisioned to ease traffic congestion in metropolitan Cebu and eventually spark economic growth and productivity not only in Cebu Province but also in the Central Visayas Region. (Press Release)

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BAP expresses full support for new BSP Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr.

The following is an official statement released by the Bankers Association of the Philippines: The Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP) congratulates Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. for his appointment…

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The following is an official statement released by the Bankers Association of the Philippines:

The Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP) congratulates Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. for his appointment as the new Governor of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP). We are confident that his 35 years of experience will sustain the implementation of sound macroeconomic policies supporting economic growth.

The association welcomes this new chapter of the BSP and Deputy Governor Espenilla has the full support of the BAP. We will remain a partner of the BSP to ensure implementation of his policy.

We are looking forward to the rest of 2017 and the following years to come with our new BSP governor. The universal and commercial banks are confident that the Philippines will continue to remain as one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia.

We would also like to thank Governor Tetangco for his stewardship and many years of strong leadership which help in bringing confidence to the financial system and reliability to the Philippine economy.

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Security Bank, MUFG launch Interbank Fund Management Service

Security Bank Corporation (SBC) and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) of Japan jointly announced the launch of the Interbank Fund Management Service (IBFM). A Memorandum of Agreement was signed between…

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Security Bank Corporation (SBC) and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) of Japan jointly announced the launch of the Interbank Fund Management Service (IBFM). A Memorandum of Agreement was signed between SBC and MUFG’s banking entity, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd.

IBFM is a special correspondent banking arrangement where customers from the two banks can enjoy respective services without having to worry about the remittance costs and numerous transfer instructions. The automated IBFM service enables customers to do online collection and disbursement arrangements and instructions directly with SBC.

MUFG will take care of funding and moving excess and deficit funds for those collections and disbursements, free of remittance costs. Customers will know their end-of-day balances by 5:30 PM.

Security Bank Corporation Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group

AGREEMENT. Present during the Memorandum of Agreement signing ceremony were the working teams from both banks headed by Security Bank officers: President & CEO Alfonso Salcedo, Jr. (seated, third from left) and EVP & Wholesale Banking Segment Head Eduardo Olbes (seated, fourth from left) along with Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ officers: Manila Branch’s General Manager Tatsuto Ishida (seated, second from left) and Deputy General Manager Nobuyuki Hokimoto (seated, first from left).

Tremendous flexibility

The service is backed by the concept of target balance sweeping, done automatically between the two banks without additional remittance fees to the customer. It eliminates the burden of numerous funds checking intraday.

This facility gives tremendous flexibility to MUFG customers to avail of the premium Cash Management Systems (CMS) services of SBC like 24×7 PAS 5 (Real time Customs Duties Payments) and Online Collection facility called BIPPS (Billing Invoice Presentment and Payment System), while maintaining their global core funds with MUFG.

The launch of IBFM comes soon after the first anniversary of the strategic partnership between MUFG and SBC, in which Japan’s largest bank invested 20% in one of Philippines largest domestic banks and a leader in digital CMS. The two have since collaborated on a series of initiatives, such as a successful business matching session in Manila, where both banks introduced their corporate clients to each other. (Press Release)

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Landers Superstore opens in Cebu today

Landers Superstore Cebu, located in 23 Minore Park on Cardinal Rosales Avenue corner Pope John Paul II Avenue, offers a wide selection of goods and exclusive perks for members. The…

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Landers Superstore Cebu, located in 23 Minore Park on Cardinal Rosales Avenue corner Pope John Paul II Avenue, offers a wide selection of goods and exclusive perks for members.

The Cebu branch is the first outside Metro Manila. It spans 8,000 square meters of blissful shopping experience, tasting dining choices that include the Doppio cafe, Dough & Co. bakery, and Landers Special, a diner named after a train station.

Landers Superstore Cebu

Landers Superstore Cebu opens today.

The barbershop Federal Barbers gives out free haircuts to Landers Superstore Cebu members, who also get fuel discounts of P2 off per liter for gasoline and P1.50 off per liter for diesel. Landers is able to offer fuel discounts through a partnership with Caltex.

Facebook Live tour of Landers Superstore Cebu

A promo that adds either another premium or an extension membership for every single premium membership registration at only P800 is ongoing up to June 30, 2017. Those interested need to sign up personally at the store to avail of the special offers.

Like Landers Superstore Cebu @LandersSuperstoreCebu on Facebook and @landersph on Instagram.

More Photos

Landers Superstore Cebu

Landers Superstore Cebu is the first outside Manila.

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

With several counters, we didn’t have to wait for long in line during the VIP preview.

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

MEMBERSHIP PROMO. A promo that adds either another premium or an extension membership for every single premium membership registration at only P800 is ongoing up to June 30, 2017.

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu

 

Landers Superstore Cebu free haircut

FREE HAIRCUT. The barbershop Federal Barbers gives out free haircuts to Landers Superstore Cebu members, who also get fuel discounts of P2 off per liter for gasoline and P1.50 off per liter for diesel.

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AboitizLand unveils Foressa Mountain Town project in Balamban

The so-called “urban jungle” life that Cebuanos are experiencing today gave birth to the concept of Foressa, the first mountain town project of AboitizLand in Cansomoroy, Balamban, Cebu. “The mother’s…

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The so-called “urban jungle” life that Cebuanos are experiencing today gave birth to the concept of Foressa, the first mountain town project of AboitizLand in Cansomoroy, Balamban, Cebu.

“The mother’s womb is our first home. We grow up and discovered the outdoors. Then everything suddenly became tighter and most of us are trapped in cubicles, stuck in traffic. We all yearn to escape. And so why settle for a five-star living when you can have five million stars living? This project is beyond words,” said John Amon, VP for Innovations Group of AboitizLand, when he shared the Foressa story during its launch in Marco Polo Plaza Cebu on April 27.

Foressa Launch

FORESSA LAUNCH. AboitizLand VP for Innovations Group John Amon presents the Foressa story during its launch at Marco Polo Plaza last April 27, 2017.

Foressa Mountain Town is a 300-hectare community. Its development will come in four phases, with the first phase set to start in the last quarter of this year. There will be an initial 114 lots available for buyers with lot cuts ranging from 300 square meters to a maximum of 690 square meters and turnover target is 2020.

Second home

AboitizLand CEO Andoni Aboitiz said Foressa was designed as a second home or vacation residence where families can create lasting memories together.

He added they do not want to compete with the beach concept and instead felt that the Cebuanos are ready for the mountain concept.

Asked for some indicators that Cebuanos are ready to get a second home, Aboitiz cited the demand for condominiums that has been going strong for many years.

“A lot of people, we believe, have already fulfilled their primary residence. Cebu’s economy is also very strong especially with the new airport. There are a lot of beachfront and we felt the people need something else,” he said.

Foressa aims to bring the great outdoors closer to family homes. The community will offer activities like hiking, biking, spelunking, camping, and trail riding, among others.

AboitizLand Foressa Mountain Town.

TRANSFORMED. The Grand Balcony of Marco Polo Plaza was turned into great outdoors during the launch of AboitizLand’s Foressa Mountain Town.

Biggest project

Cebu’s homegrown real estate developer AboitizLand is geared towards national expansion with its first resort residential community in Luzon, the Seafront Residences located in San Juan, Batangas that ws launched also this year.

Aboitiz, however, said they will never forget Cebu. Foressa is the biggest project of AboitizLand to date.

“This (Foressa) is a multi-year project,” he said. Aside from building houses, Foressa will have commercial spaces, too.

Low-impact development

Foressa is a low-impact development. “We will follow natural contours. All will be natural, organic and nothing artificial. Even the house designs are colonial hilltop houses,” said Amon.

This was echoed by Aboitiz as he described Foressa as the first of its kind in Cebu for it ensures the property’s natural assets are preserved and left for future generations to enjoy.

Foressa Mountain Town Launch

LAUNCHING. (From left) AboitizLand’s VP for Innovations Group John Amon, CEO Andoni Aboitiz, and President and COO Patrick Reyes. The photo was taken during the launch of Foressa Mountain Town in Marco Polo Plaza last April 27, 2017.

Nature itself is the amenity in Foressa. “Imagine enjoying the grass, sky, a lot of open spaces for camping,” Amon said.

He ended his Foressa story during the launch with these beautiful words. “In Foressa, we say…Lose your worries to the stars, find yourself in Foressa. Lose your boredom to the trails, find yourself in Foressa. Lose your fears to the woods, find yourself in Foressa. Get lost in your own backyard, find yourself in Foressa.”

At Thursday’s launch, some Cebuanos made reservations and heeded the invitation to find themselves in Foressa.

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PLDT taps Uber to transport employees

PLDT is going digital in its fleet management by tapping ridesharing company Uber to transport employees. Under Uber for Business, sales personnel of PLDT and its subsidiaries Smart Communications and…

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PLDT is going digital in its fleet management by tapping ridesharing company Uber to transport employees.

Under Uber for Business, sales personnel of PLDT and its subsidiaries Smart Communications and Voyager Innovations Inc. are given an Uber for Business account that is linked to a central payment account where fares are automatically charged. This means the employees do not need to shell out personal money and ask for reimbursement later on, the company said.

“Through this, the PLDT group takes its digital pivot further by becoming the country’s first and biggest conglomerate to use digital solutions to augment its fleet management,” said Eric R. Alberto, PLDT Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer.

Paperless transactions, analytics

“Through progressive and digital fleet management, we enable our employees to really focus only on delivering awesome customer experiences when they go about their day-to-day duties, without worrying about transportation and parking issues, this via paperless transactions and analytics,” he added.

In this partnership, the PLDT group can also access a dashboard which indicates commonly used delivery routes, thereby supplying data that can help in maximizing these trips.

“Apart from efficiency, this can also translate to savings for the company, because instead of buying additional vehicles and spending for their fuel, maintenance, insurance and parking fees, we are simply outsourcing transportation services whenever the need arises,” Alberto said.

Save costs

“Uber is excited to offer solutions to companies like the PLDT group and allow us to work together not only to solve traffic, but also to save on costs of buying brand new cars. By using technologies like Uber for Business, companies are able to unlock new ways to meet employee transportation needs whenever they want, at the push of a button. We are helping shape the future of travel and simplify processes,” said Uber Philippines General Manager Laurence Cua.

Uber for Business is currently on a pilot test-run among PLDT, Smart and Voyager employees, and will later be rolled out to a larger base in the future.

In addition to cost savings, the partnership also aims to reduce the company’s carbon footprint and ease traffic congestion by facilitating carpooling among employees.

Earlier this year, uberHOP rides for employees during morning and afternoon rush hours were launched, with designated convergence points in Quezon City and Parañaque, which had been pre-identified through a survey. Each uberHOP ride can accommodate up to 6 passengers.  (Press Release)

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Globe, PAL partnership to benefit OFWs and Philippine tourism

Globe Telecom and Philippine Airlines (PAL) have joined forces to provide more benefits to OFWs by offering convenient services unprecedented in both industries. The International Business Group (IBG) of Globe…

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Globe Telecom and Philippine Airlines (PAL) have joined forces to provide more benefits to OFWs by offering convenient services unprecedented in both industries.

The International Business Group (IBG) of Globe started giving free Globe Traveler SIM cards to all passengers arriving in Manila from other countries. With the free SIM card, OFWs and tourists alike will easily be able to get in touch with their loved ones and connect with friends.

Unlimited calls

All SIM cards come with unlimited calls to Globe and TM subscribers, 20 free text messages to other networks and 15Mb mobile data valid for one day.

“Globe and Philippine Airlines collaborated to be of service to more Filipinos in and out of the country. Our common advocacy is delighting the international visitors and returning Filipinos by giving them a wonderful experience every time they arrive in the Philippines. As an increasing number of Filipinos fly back in the country to support their families, it is becoming more important for them to find ways to connect to their loved ones as soon as they land,” said Nikko Acosta, Senior Vice President of IBG.

PAL Globe partnership

LAUNCHING. Globe SVP for International Business Nikko Acosta, PAL VP for Marketing Ria C. Domingo, Globe Chief Technology and Information Officer Gil Genio, PAL President and COO Jaime J. Bautista, Globe Chief Financial Officer Rizza Maniego-Eala, PAL VP for Ancillary Business Unit Kevin Hartigan-Go.

Both companies formally unveiled their partnership during PAL’s 76th anniversary in the aviation business with the recent Philippine Airlines 76th Anniversary Expo with Globe at the Bonifacio High Street Amphitheater.

Beginning of long-term partnership

The celebration featured booths from both Globe and PAL that promoted a variety of activities. Globe customers got to learn more about the new Easy Roam 149, where postpaid customers can enjoy unlimited data roaming for five days for only P149.

“The Philippine Airlines 76th Anniversary Expo with Globe is just the beginning of our long-term partnership,” reveals Kevin Hartigan-Go, VP for Ancillary Business Unit of PAL. “Soon, we will be launching more benefits and promos to PAL and Globe customers both here and abroad.”

The recent event is just the first of many collaborations planned by the two companies, both leaders in their respective industries. The partnership between Globe and PAL is a true testament to their commitment to provide tourists, balikbayans and OFWs an enhanced experience that eventually changes the game in both the telecommunications and airline industries. (Press release)

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PLDT bags 18 Anvil awards for outstanding communications programs

PLDT HOME harvested 8 trophies, including 3 Gold Anvil Awards for its Most Beautiful Connection video, “Strengthening the Volleyball Community with the Volley Friends” program and “Gabay Guro 2016.” PLDT…

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PLDT HOME harvested 8 trophies, including 3 Gold Anvil Awards for its Most Beautiful Connection video, “Strengthening the Volleyball Community with the Volley Friends” program and “Gabay Guro 2016.” PLDT Enterprise took home 9 awards, garnering a gold trophy for its Hot Joe Magazine. PLDT Public Affairs, meanwhile, received a Silver Anvil for the PLDT 2015 Annual Report – Virtual is Real.

The annual Anvil Awards honors the most outstanding communications programs and tools implemented from October 2015 to October 2016. The Anvil recognizes outstanding public relations programs and tools, as well as the agencies and companies that have created out-of-the-box business communication initiatives.

PLDT Chairman and CEO Manuel V. Pangilinan (center) led the PLDT Group in celebrating this achievement, together with top executives of the company, including PLDT FVP and Head of SME Nation Mitch Locsin, PLDT Public Affairs Head and SVP Mon Isberto, and PLDT VP and Head of HOME Marketing Gary Dujali.

 

PLDT Anvil Awards

The PLDT Home team with PLDT Chairman Manny V. Pangilinan.

 

PLDT Anvil Awards

PLDT Gabay Guro was lauded for its 2016 campaign and TeacherFest tribute event at the recent 52nd Anvil Awards.

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Smart named Anvil Company of the Year anew

For the second straight year, Smart Communications won the Company of the Year citation at the Anvil Awards, after receiving the highest number of Gold Anvils for its public relations…

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For the second straight year, Smart Communications won the Company of the Year citation at the Anvil Awards, after receiving the highest number of Gold Anvils for its public relations programs.

Smart received 17 Gold Anvils and seven Silver Anvils in a ceremony organized recently by the Public Relations Society of the Philippines. On its 52nd year, the Anvil Awards is considered the Oscars of public relations in the country.

Smart Anvil award

Smart employees celebrate their Anvil awards haul.

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.

Gold Anvils

Winning Gold Anvils were the AlDub for TNT campaign, Batibot app, Batingaw app for disaster preparedness and response, Smart’s efforts to train Filipinos on Android app development for free, the Disaster Communications Summit, the Smart Flagship Store, Smart’s Gamified Mobile Learning Program, GigaSurf50 campaign, Launchpad, the My Smart website and app, Paskong Pagsaluhan event for employees, Smart TechnoCart and School-in-a-Bag, Smart BROkada Road Trip, Smart Roamer app for Filipinos abroad, Sun Deserve Mo ‘To campaign, and the internal social media site for Smart employees called Workplace by Facebook.

Smart won Silver Anvils for the My Smart launch, the compendium of videos on Smart’s mobile education programs, #OwnIt video, SHINE OS+ (Secured Health Information Network and Exchange), Smart Bro Plan 799 campaign, Sun First Job Problems campaign, and the Welcome Change campaign. (Press Release)

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UTrade boosts campaign to get Cebuanos into stocks investing

Investing in stocks is owning companies without the hassle of getting permits and putting up capital and UTrade wants Cebuanos to see it as a means to achieve financial security….

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Investing in stocks is owning companies without the hassle of getting permits and putting up capital and UTrade wants Cebuanos to see it as a means to achieve financial security.

“There is so much potential in Cebu since Cebuanos are by nature entrepreneurial,” said UTrade AVP in marketing Michelle Ungco.

She added that with only about 2 percent of Filipinos currently invested in stocks, the brokerage firm sees “a sea of opportunity” in the remaining 98 percent.

Since its establishment in 2014 when it only had around a hundred clients, UTrade now has 5,000, according to head and manager of sales Neil Gabaldon. UTrade is an online trading platform.

UTrade Cebu seminar

UTrade Investment Consultant Carlos Felipe gives an introduction to stocks trading in a seminar in Cebu City.

UTrade Growth targets

Only a fraction of this number, however, are Cebu residents, Gabaldon said, adding they seek to make securities trading more familiar to Cebuanos by adding more events to the weekly seminars at the UTrade office in the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE). The weekly seminar is from 3-5 p.m. every Tuesday at the PSE office in Cebu, which is located at the Insular Life building in the Cebu Business Park. UTrade held a Stock Investing 101 workshop in Cebu on March 4, 2017.

Ungco said they don’t plan run after the 2 percent already investing in publicly-listed shares and try to convince them UTrade is the better brokerage firm but would just focus their efforts on the 98 percent that have yet to learn what the stock market is all about.

“The 98 percent are different kinds of people. UTrade wants to talk to those interested in investing or at least know what it is to invest. They’ve invested in funds, merong insurance, my negosyo na, may ari ng lupa. They’re already invested but want to diversify, add to their investment vehicles, and get into something that will give them accelerated financial success,” she added.

UTrade has intensified the campaign to grow its client base particularly in Cebu, Gabaldon added.

UTrade Cebu press con

STOCKS INVESTING. UTrade officials hold a press conference in Cebu to announce expansion plans. From left are: Adeluisa Gesalan, Cebu Business Development Officer; Carlos Felipe, Investment Consultant of UTrade; Michelle Ungco, AVP in Marketing; Neil Gabaldon, Head and Manager of Sales; MJ Catriz, Assistant Manager in Digital Marketing; and Marnelle Apat, Cebu Business Development Officer.

Stock investing

When people save their money in the bank, they only get very little interest in their savings, said UTrade investment consultant Carlos Felipe.

On the other hand, the bank makes money from deposits by loaning the funds out at a high interest.

“Would you rather loan money to the bank or just own the bank? How can you do this? By buying shares of that bank in the open market. This is the power of stocks, you become part owner of a company,” he added.

According to Ungco, the company’s immediate plans involve the launch of a mobile app by April 2017 and distribution of mutual funds for people who are still averse to stock market risks.

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Accenture marks 10 years in Cebu; to hire more workers, open new facility

As Accenture celebrates its 10th anniversary in Cebu this 2017, the company said it is committed to continue growing the business here, especially in the area of technology-driven, digitally-enabled services….

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As Accenture celebrates its 10th anniversary in Cebu this 2017, the company said it is committed to continue growing the business here, especially in the area of technology-driven, digitally-enabled services.

Lito T. Tayag, country managing director of Accenture, Inc. (Philippines), said the company intends to add a thousand to the Cebu workforce within the year.

Accenture also looks forward to opening a new facility within Cebu in 2017.

Accenture currently has 5,000 employees distributed over four facilities in Cebu from the 85 it started out with at Pioneer House in 2007. It has since added facilities in Cybergate, eBloc 2, and eBloc 3.

Lito Tayag Accenture

CEBU AT FOREFRONT. Lito T. Tayag, country managing director of Accenture, Inc. (Philippines), says “The industry is changing through digital transformation, digital disruptions. A lot of our clients are seeking services in new IT or what we call the digital space. Cebu is at the forefront of providing these services.” (MyCebu.ph photo: Max Limpag)

High-value IT services

According to Tayag, most of Accenture Philippines operations are focused on non-voice, specifically on high-value services in tech, operations, and new IT. The company caters to 120 multi-national clients in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

“The industry is changing through digital transformation, digital disruptions. A lot of our clients are seeking services in new IT or what we call the digital space. Cebu is at the forefront of providing these services,” he added.

Tayag also said that the growth to a 5,000-strong workforce is a major achievement by most standards. Cebu getting the highest engagement score from among Accenture facilities in the country is another proof that the company continues to focus on its people. The rating measures job satisfaction of employees within Accenture offices.

Accenture Cebu growth

On Accenture’s 10th year, Tayag said the company is proud of what it has achieved and commits to more growth in Cebu.

He said the company also helps enable talent through initiatives in the community, including support for the non-profit skills training organization Passerelles Numeriques and giving out scholarships for high school graduates in the Visayas. More than 30 graduates of Passerelles have been hired as Accenture employees.

Accenture also collaborates with the government, organizations, and other companies to ensure that college graduates learn skills that are in step with today’s digital transformation.

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PLDT, Smart, TV5, Solar converge to bring ultimate Miss Universe 2016 experience to Filipinos

Leading Philippine telco and digital services provider PLDT and mobile leader Smart Communications together with broadcast station TV5 will bring the much anticipated Miss Universe 2016 closer to Filipinos everywhere…

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Leading Philippine telco and digital services provider PLDT and mobile leader Smart Communications together with broadcast station TV5 will bring the much anticipated Miss Universe 2016 closer to Filipinos everywhere through the country’s most extensive and robust fixed line and wireless networks.

In partnership with the Miss Universe Organization and official Philippine broadcast partner of Miss Universe 2016 Solar Entertainment, the PLDT Group will enable the best viewing experience of the pageant in the Philippines through its various terrestrial and digital channels, across multiple screens at home and on-the-go.

“With the Miss Universe crown currently in our homeland, the enthusiasm for and connection of Filipinos to the global pageant is now stronger than ever,” PLDT Chairman Manny V. Pangilinan said. “With the combined reach of PLDT, Smart and TV5, we are providing our countrymen more ways to enjoy the pageant. We are giving them exclusive access to behind-the-scenes and key events such as the very popular swimsuit and long gown competitions, and of course, real-time viewing of the much-awaited coronation night.”

MISS UNIVERSE BROADCAST. Shawn McClain, Wilson Tieng, Manny V. Pangilinan, Eric Alberto, and Chot Reyes during the signing of the agreement. (Contributed photo)

Robust network, multi-platform

“With our robust network capabilities and the largest consumer base of over 75 million Filipinos, millions of fans can watch the pageant events via multiple platforms, whether on TV, laptop or mobile—whenever they want, wherever they want. For years, we have been revolutionizing the way entertainment is consumed in the nation, offering our subscribers an extensive entertainment portfolio featuring top digital entertainment partners. Miss Universe is one platform we would not miss out on,” Pangilinan said.

PLDT and Smart will provide fixed broadband and mobile connectivity to power the Miss Universe pageant throughout their stay in the Philippines. With the country’s widest Fibr broadband network which delivers symmetrical speeds of up to 1Gbps and Smart’s superior mobile LTE network, consumers can be assured of the best real-time Miss Universe experience.

“The Internet and social media will undoubtedly play a substantial role in Miss Universe in the Philippines,” PLDT and Smart Chief Revenue Officer Eric Alberto said. “We are ready to contribute our topnotch products and services to make it a more engaging experience for everyone. Miss Universe 2016 will be using PLDT and Smart’s services throughout their entire journey, while fans will be able to immerse themselves in not only the coronation night, but also on all the exciting events leading up to it. True to our promise of bringing the ultimate Miss Universe experience, our subscribers will get a chance to witness the coronation night live via free ticket promos.”

Extensive Miss Universe coverage

On top of the complete broadcast coverage of the coronation night, TV5 will give viewers access to the preliminary show, specifically the swimsuit and long gown rounds. “Filipinos can look forward to watching their favorite contestants compete even before the grand finale, which is something only TV5 can offer,” TV5 President and CEO Chot Reyes said. “We aim to bring the pageant to life by bringing it closer to the hearts and enthusiasm of every Filipino.”

TV5 signed with Solar for the partnership which encompasses on-air, on-ground, and PR values—the blocktime airing of the Coronation Night on January 30, the exclusive airing of the long gown and swimsuit preliminary competitions on January 28 and 29 which will also be available online on the same day, powered by PLDT and Smart.

Solar Entertainment takes pride in collaborating with TV5, PLDT, and Smart in the hope of delivering the optimum broadcast quality coverage of this momentous event, showcasing the wonders and beauty of the Philippines, and giving our fellow Filipinos the ultimate Miss Universe experience, the press statement said.

“Bringing Miss Universe to the Philippines is one of the top events that we have ever invested in. It is an opportunity that we did not want to miss,” said Mr. Wilson Tieng, President and CEO of Solar Entertainment Corporation. “For Miss Universe, we have jam-packed activities that will be happening at the same time and we’re excited to share it with the viewers.” (Press Release)

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Captain Comendador officially appointed Philippines AirAsia’s president and CEO

Philippines AirAsia has officially appointed Captain Dexter Comendador as president and chief executive officer effective January 10, 2017, the company said in a press statement. Comendador has over 33 years…

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Philippines AirAsia has officially appointed Captain Dexter Comendador as president and chief executive officer effective January 10, 2017, the company said in a press statement.

Comendador has over 33 years of experience in the aviation industry. He served as combat pilot, flight commander and pilot instructor in the Philippine Air Force for eight years before beginning his professional career as a commercial pilot in 1992.

Trailblazer

A trailblazer and highly-decorated pilot, Captain Comendador is a cum laude graduate of the prestigious Philippine Military Academy and is a recipient of 26 service medals, including two Gold Crosses for bravery and successful combat operations.

In 1994, while serving as flight systems engineering crew of a commercial airline, Captain Comendador successfully managed an inflight bomb explosion that earned him a commendation from then-President Fidel Ramos and international media attention, inspiring stories of bravery, courage and professionalism.

Captain Comendador opted for early retirement in 2010 while serving as chief pilot for safety and compliance at a local budget airline. Airlines and airplanes, however, are truly his first love and, after a short break, he took a job overseas with a foreign airline before eventually winding up at AirAsia in December 2011.

Philippines AirAsia Dexter Comendador and Tony Fernandes

Philippines AirAsia CEO Captain Dexter Comendador (left) and AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes at the AirAsia office in Pasay City.

Homegrown talent

He was then asked to join the newly-launched AirAsia operations in the Philippines as Chief Pilot for Operations and was promoted two years later to Director of Flight Operations and Chief Operating Officer. He accepted the challenge to lead the Philippine team of AirAsia as interim Chief Executive Officer in July 2016.

Philippines AirAsia Chairperson Maan Hontiveros said, “The appointment of Captain Dex as our CEO will earn him another title apart from his numerous medals and accolades. He is now the first flying pilot-CEO of an airline company in the Philippines.”

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes said, “Captain Dex brings with him a wealth of aviation experience and business knowledge. He is a Filipino hero pilot, a homegrown talent with the extraordinary ability to connect and inspire people and ideas capable of driving change and innovation in the Philippines.” (Press Release)

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PLDT showcases “home of the future” in concept store in Cebu

When picking a subscription plan, people often find it difficult to visualize differences in the data speed offerings. A tool at the newly-opened PLDT Home concept store in SM Seaside…

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When picking a subscription plan, people often find it difficult to visualize differences in the data speed offerings. A tool at the newly-opened PLDT Home concept store in SM Seaside City helps them easily and visually compare speed offerings of the different subscription plans.

The tool, named Broadband Visualizer, is among the many features customers can find inside the store, which was opened last Thursday.

“The concept behind the store is really to give the customers the real experience of what the future of the home will be. If you come in, you will see the different services that you can get when you have really good broadband internet,” said PLDT Home head Oscar Reyes Jr. in an interview with MyCebu.ph during the opening.

PLDT concept store Cebu

CHECKING OUT SERVICES. Guests check out options for video services in one of the digital kiosks inside the PLDT concept store in SM Seaside City. The store showcases products and services to build the “home of the future.”

1st PLDT Home concept store

The PLDT Home concept store in SM Seaside City is the first in the country, Reyes said. It is located in Cyberzone.

The Broadband Visualizer also includes a tool that allows people to indicate their data usage such as how often they download videos or use online services and then help them pick the plan that fits their needs.

“People always say you’ll get 2mbps, 3mbps, 20mbps. But what does it actually mean? Here you can actually see how fast downloading a video would take between two plans. If I get a 2mbps speed versus a 20 mbps speed, you’ll see the difference in how fast you actually download or stream a particular video,” Reyes said.

PLDT Home concept store

OPENING. PLDT Home head Oscar Reyes Jr. (3rd from left, front row), Miss International 2016 Kylie Verzosa, PLDT Home CC and SS Strategy Performance Head Louella Aquino lead the opening of the concept store in SM Seaside City. (Photo by Marlen Limpag)

Augmented reality demonstration

A centerpiece of the store that occupies a huge window at front is an augmented reality demonstration. It shows real-time videos of people with augmented reality overlay like snapchat like filters, videos of elephants crossing and other animations.

The store also has booths that allow customers to experience offerings of PLDT Home Fibr, DSL, and Ultera offerings.

PLDT Home smartwatches

SMARTWATCHES. Among the gadgets you can check out in the store are these feature-packed smartwatches.

PLDT Home products

“Our new high-tech concept store, coupled with our accommodating staff and engaging activities, is part of our continuous efforts to proactively and efficiently address the needs of our current and potential Cebu-based subscribers,” PLDT Home Customer Care Head Paolo Lopez said in a statement.

The store also has a video chat facility for customer service concerns. The video chat allows them to directly talk to a Manila-based customer service officer.

The store also has demo products for Telpad, its voice phone unit that contains digital services. They can also try out their digital TV service Cignal delivered via Fibr and check options like iFlix, Netflix, Fox, and I Want TV.The store also has several smartwatches that customers can try out.

PLDT Home Telpad

PLDT TELPAD. These Telpad units add digital services to the traditional home telephone unit. You can try them out at the store.

 

Watch: PLDT opens concept store in SM Seaside City

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24-storey Latitude Corporate Center to rise at Cebu Business Park

Cebu Landmasters will add to Cebu’s office space with the construction of the Latitude Corporate Center that’s scheduled for completion in 2019 at the Cebu Business Park. Launched recently in…

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Cebu Landmasters will add to Cebu’s office space with the construction of the Latitude Corporate Center that’s scheduled for completion in 2019 at the Cebu Business Park.

Launched recently in partnership with the Borromeo Bros. Estates, the 24-storey tower will provide total gross area of 35,000 square meters for three types of offices: executive, enterprise, and business process outsourcing (BPO).

Latitude, which will rise across Ayala Center Cebu on the Mindanao Avenue side, is poised to become the highest office building within Cebu Business Park. It was launched on November 21, 2016 in an exclusive event attended by businessmen, top brokers, and prospective investors.

Latitude Corporate Center launch

LAUNCHING. (From left) Cebu Landmasters COO Franco Soberano and CEO Jose Soberano III and Borromeo Bros. Estate, Inc. officials Bernadette Gallego and Jonel Borromeo talk about the Latitude Corporate Center during a press conference to announce the project. (Photo by USJ-R Intern Cybelle Kyrie Dela Rosa)

Green building

Franco Soberano, Cebu Landmasters Inc. chief operations officer, said the building will have a “green heart” and incorporate such eco-friendly features as stub-outs for fresh air provision, rainwater collection system, LED lighting, materials recovery facility, 60 percent glass ratio for natural lighting, and 20 percent of green space.

A short briefer on the project said it will have a big tree sanctuary in the grand entrance plaza located at the ground floor level, a sky lounge at the 14th floor, and a garden deck at 17th floor.

It’s green design is registered with the Building for Eco-friendly Responsive Design Excellence or BERDE system, which is a Philippine revision of LEED or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design.

LATITUDE CORPORATE CENTER. Cebu Landmasters and Borromeo Bros. Estate, Inc. officials during the launch of the Latitude Corporate Center. (Photo by USJ-R Intern Cybelle Kyrie Dela Rosa)

LATITUDE CORPORATE CENTER. Cebu Landmasters and Borromeo Bros. Estate, Inc. officials during the launch of the Latitude Corporate Center. (Photo by USJ-R Intern Cybelle Kyrie Dela Rosa)

Office types

The Latitude Corporate Center will offer office spaces for BPO (large), Enterprise (medium), and Executive, with unit areas ranging from 51 to 2,000 square meters.

It draws inspiration from another Cebu Landmasters project, Park Centrale at Cebu IT Park, which is pioneering winner of the Best Commercial Development (Cebu) in the Philippine Property Awards 2014 that later garnered the Highly Commended Best Commercial Development Philippines at the Southeast Asia Property Awards held in Singapore.

Latitude Corporate Center

HIGHEST. Latitude, which will rise across Ayala Center Cebu on the Mindanao Avenue side, is poised to become the highest office building within Cebu Business Park. (Photo by USJ-R Intern Cybelle Kyrie Dela Rosa)

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Globe, PLDT sign agreement to cut interconnection rate for voice calls

Globe Telecom signed a memorandum of understanding with PLDT to reduce the interconnection rate for voice calls between the two operators. The agreement will lead to lower price of domestic…

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Globe Telecom signed a memorandum of understanding with PLDT to reduce the interconnection rate for voice calls between the two operators.

The agreement will lead to lower price of domestic mobile and fixed line calls between Globe and PLDT-Smart. The reduction of interconnection rates will not affect Globe to Globe (intra) calls as these are not subject to interconnect charges and are already offered to consumers in an unlimited basis.

International calls are not covered by the agreement.

Globe PLDT interconnection

AGREEMENT. Signing the interconnection rate cut agreement are (from left) Globe General Counsel Froilan Castelo, Rep. Cesar Sarmiento, Globe Chief Technology and Information Officer Gil Genio, DICT Secretary Rodolfo Salalima, PLDT’s Eric Alberto, NTC Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba and PLDT’s Ray Espinosa. (Contributed photo)

NTC order

Under the deal, the two telcos committed to take steps to lower retail rates for voice, taking into consideration the reduction in interconnection rates. Both parties also committed to maintain GOS (grade of service) in interconnection. This means both operators will ensure that sufficient telecommunications circuits or routes are available for efficient transmission of calls.

The agreement is related to the issuance by the National Telecommunications Commission of a memorandum circular providing for a reduction in the interconnection rate between the two networks.

Under the circular, interconnection charge for voice calls should not be more than P2.50 per minute from P4.00 per minute previously, representing a 38% cut. The reduction should take effect not later than January 1, 2017.

More robust economy

“For many years now, Globe has been strongly advocating the rationalization of interconnect access charge between the two telcos. We are confident that a reduction in the cost of interconnection for voice calls will eventually redound to a more robust economy, providing our customers with an affordable and easily accessible way of communication,” said Globe Chief Technology and Information Officer Gil Genio said.

Genio, along with General Counsel Atty. Froilan Castelo, signed for Globe. Department of Information and Communications Technology Secretary Rodolfo Salalima and NTC Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba witnessed the signing.

The NTC said the decision to lower interconnection rates is in line with efforts to reduce communications costs, maintain and foster fair competition in the telecommunications industry as well as to make mobile voice service more affordable to the public. (Press release)

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PLDT enables enterprise telecommuting with PH’s first Unified Collaboration solution

PLDT recently introduced the country’s first full-featured enterprise-grade virtual conferencing platform solution to further promote telecommuting among enterprises. This solution is in line with government’s efforts to push for telecommuting…

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PLDT recently introduced the country’s first full-featured enterprise-grade virtual conferencing platform solution to further promote telecommuting among enterprises. This solution is in line with government’s efforts to push for telecommuting and other ICT-based solutions to mitigate traffic congestion in the country.

In partnership with global business conglomerate Tata Communications, PLDT’s Unified Collaboration, powered by Jamvee, is an enterprise cloud-based solution that allows users to set up a secured collaboration experience on any or multiple devices using any operating system and lets organizations host high-quality virtual conferences for several attendees from just about anywhere.

PLDT Unified Collaboration

COLLABORATION PLATFORM. The PLDT Unified Collaboration solution enable multiple users from different locations to collaborate through a high-quality virtual conference platform.

Productive tool

“Telecommuting has already been the practice of leading organizations in developed countries and it’s been shown as a productive collaboration tool that helps enterprises plan meetings and conferences more efficiently,” said PLDT EVP and ePLDT President & CEO Eric R. Alberto.

“The PLDT Group will always be supportive of government’s efforts in promoting digital solutions to help business, the economy, and the country at large. Through PLDT’s Unified Collaboration solution, every enterprise can now explore the flexibility of virtual conferencing, and adopt such ICT-based solution to increase efficiencies, and optimize personnel productivity within and outside of workplaces.”

With its HD content sharing feature, attendees can share images, videos, audio, and presentations. It also allows for instant messaging between individuals or groups. Its highly-secure virtual meeting rooms can accommodate up to 100 participants simultaneously.

ICT-based solutions

In its proposed resolutions headed by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), the government encourages the private and the public sectors to adopt various ICT-based solutions, including telecommuting, to help resolve traffic congestion by lessening substantial time spent in commuting to and from different points whether for work or school.

The resolution also calls on both sectors to seriously consider telecommuting as an alternative work arrangement for their employees, whenever practicable, without compromising their work productivity.

“Telecommuting is only as effective as the network infrastructure that powers it, and PLDT has considerably built on the strength of the group’s network to enable enterprises to maximize and leverage on the advantages and enjoy these new solutions,” added Alberto.

Extensive network

PLDT has invested over P300 billion in the past 10 years to build and future-proof PLDT’s infrastructure in both fixed and wireless networks. Today, PLDT has the most extensive fiber optic network in the country with over 140,000 kilometers of fiber optic cables linked to four cable landing stations that connects the country to major cable systems in the US, Europe, Australia, Asia, and the rest of the world.

This year, PLDT allotted P48 billion in capital expenditures to further expand the network, and build more cell sites to increase coverage and connect more subscribers in the country. (Press release)

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BPI Family Auto Madness back in Davao, Cebu

BPI Family Savings Bank is again set to help fulfill every Filipino’s dream of getting their own car as it brings the second wave of mall-based Auto Madness sorties to…

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BPI Family Savings Bank is again set to help fulfill every Filipino’s dream of getting their own car as it brings the second wave of mall-based Auto Madness sorties to the cities of Davao and Cebu this week.

The Davao leg will be held from Nov. 10-13 at the Abreeza Mall, while the Cebu event is scheduled to run from Nov. 11-13 in Ayala Center Cebu.

BPI Auto Madness

Last year’s BPI Auto Madness event.

BPI Family Auto Loan

Davaoenos and Cebuanos who dream of having their own cars get the chance to make it happen at the BPI Family Auto Madness, as BPI Family Savings Bank brings the car buying experience closer to everyone.

There are 20 car models to choose from all under one roof.

Owning your dream car is also made affordable through special rates and exclusive deals from BPI Family Auto Loan and partner car dealers.

Financial advice

BPI Family Auto Loan enables you one to own your dream car the soonest possible time through expert financial advice from BPI Family Loan Advisors present in any of the BPI Family Auto Madness sites, fast and easy application process, and affordable monthly payment terms.

With BPI Family Auto Madness, Davaoeno and Cebuano families may find the best way to make this Christmas season meaningful and complete.

For more details about BPI Family Auto Loan, visit bpiloans.com. (Press Release)

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