MyCebu.ph: Cebu News & Features

Re/Discovering Cebu, one story at a time

Global Cebu forges scoreless draw with FC Manila Sparks

Global Cebu again turned to keeper Patrick Deyto for a scoreless draw against a determined FC Manila Sparks in their Philippines Football League match at the Cebu City Sports Center…

Waterfront hotels in Cebu highlight modern Cebuano flavors in food fest

Ordinary bread, the common danggit, and dried green mango become the creme de la creme of appetizers under the expert hands of celebrity chef Tristan Encarnacion in a food feast…

Casa de Cacao offers tablea tales, chocolate indulgence

A short lesson on the cacao plant that turns into a decadent feast, Raquel Choa’s The Chocolate Journey at the home she calls Casa de Cacao is an experience that…

DTI leads moves for digital transformation of MSMEs

An online campaign that accompanied an e-commerce mentoring program by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in Cebu generated leads from as far as London for a furniture company….

Tap digital to boost business growth in a mobile-first Philippine market, Google official tells Cebu SMEs

Small business with a strong online presence grow 4 times faster than competitors who are not on digital, said Google Philippines country manager Kenneth Lingan. With 65 million Filipinos now…

Diamond Rent-A-Car executive: Digital marketing a must for SMEs

When Diamond Rent-A-Car first tried out digital advertising several years ago, it was a relatively new thing in the Philippines. Quincy Buenaflor, the company’s vice president for operations, said he…

Innovation, not digitization, is key: Mayor Tomas Osmeña

Capitalizing on innovation as the key to digitization, Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña is eyeing an alternative to renewing business permits in the city. Osmeña spoke before an audience at…

Utility companies work to rid Cebu City of ‘spaghetti’, dangling wires

Power, telecommunication, and cable companies have banded together to remove unsightly “spaghetti” and dangling wires from Cebu City streets to prevent accidents and as part of a clean-up drive. The…

Celebrity chefs reinterpret local cuisine in Waterfront hotels’ Filipino food fest

What happens when you dip kangkong leaves in a special batter with ground tamarind before deep-frying them to crispy pieces? You get sinigang bites, a new take on an old…

Grand Land Inc. sees potential in serviced apartments

Cebu developer Grand Land Inc. topped off Grand Residences Cebu North Tower A last Thursday, August 17. Following this milestone, Grand Land’s VP for Sales and Marketing Tina Pestaño revealed…

Cebu startup takes on Uber, Grab; signs up Manila taxi operators

Just as global ride-hailing apps Uber and Grab are facing government regulatory problems, a Cebu-based startup today announced an agreement with taxi operators in Manila to expand its service to…

Just as global ride-hailing apps Uber and Grab are facing government regulatory problems, a Cebu-based startup today announced an agreement with taxi operators in Manila to expand its service to more commuters nationwide.

MICAB, a startup that started in Cebu that is now also incorporated in Singapore, today announced an agreement with the Philippine National Taxi Operators Association (PNTOA) and Association of Taxi Operators in Metro Manila (ATOMM).

The agreement expands the service area of MICAB, which is currently operating in Cebu and Iloilo with a fleet of 800 taxi units, said MICAB CEO Eddie Ybañez.

MICAB monthly bookings

He said MICAB currently serves 20,000 passengers with combined monthly bookings of 200,000.

PNTOA and ATOMM, Ybañez said, have a combined network of 20,000 taxi units. He said they plan to launch in Manila with 3,000 taxi units and scale up to 7,000 units by yearend. The company is also planning to expand to Davao.

In terms of application capability, MICAB is similar to Uber and Grab, Ybañez said. They differ in the business model.

Unlike Uber and Grab, MICAB does not directly deal with drivers. It engages with “premium taxi companies” and provides them an app-based system to dispatch units. MICAB works with Ken Taxi in Cebu and Light of Glory in Iloilo.

MICAB Manila

MANILA EXPANSION. MICAB, a ride-hailing app that started in Cebu, has expanded in Manila and signed up operators at the capital. In photo after the signing of the agreement are (from left) Pablo Sarmiento (left) of the Association of Taxi Operators in Metro Manila, MICAB CEO Eddie Ybañez, Atty. Bong Suntay of the Philippine National Taxi Operators Association, and David Vacher of MICAB. (Contributed photo)

No regulatory issues

Because of that, Ybañez does not see any regulatory issues for MiCab .

“We are not really subject to LTFRB’s TVNS regulations as our business model is to partner with taxi companies only. All our taxi operator partners are 100% compliant with LTFRB’s franchising regulations,” he said in an interviews.

The MICAB app functions similarly with both Uber and Grab.

“Application wise it’s the same, we will be adding in more features that is not currently present with Grab and Uber,” Ybañez said.

MICAB, however, does not impose surge pricing and collects only a low booking fee, he said.

Revenue model

The startup does not take a cut from drivers’ revenues. Its business model, Ybañez said, is “targeted geolocation advertising.”

“Our focus for the coming months is to successfully launch MICAB here in Manila, develop customer base, increase brand awareness through excellent customer service and solidify the taxi partner network,” he said.

MICAB started out as among the startups funded in the 2013 batch of IdeaSpace Foundation, the incubator of the Manny V. Pangilinan group of companies.

The startup, however, is looking beyond ride hailing. It is scheduled to launch later this year its MIHEALTH app, in partnership with “one of the largest HMO in the Philippines.” It will also launch MICARGO, in partnership with Gothong Southern Shipping Lines, in August.

No Comments on Cebu startup takes on Uber, Grab; signs up Manila taxi operators

Ding How: oldtime Cebu favorite Chinese restaurant reopens

The restaurant that introduced dim sum to Cebuanos in 1969 reopens at Robinsons Galleria Cebu and brings back the popular dishes from the old Ding How menu. “When we talk…

The restaurant that introduced dim sum to Cebuanos in 1969 reopens at Robinsons Galleria Cebu and brings back the popular dishes from the old Ding How menu.

“When we talk about our first experience with Chinese food, we think of steamed rice, siomai, and spring rolls. Cebuanos got to know dimsum through Ding How and it is an experience that is unique to Cebu,” said Steven Kokseng, marketing manager of Harbour City Dimsum House, Inc. The company owns and operates the Harbour City, Dimsum Break, Ding Qua Qua and Ding How brands.

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Steamed rice is a Cebuano favorite.

Ding How Dimsum House opened along Colon Street in 1969 but a shift in the Cebuano preference for fastfood in 2000 prompted the company to replace it with Dimsum Break.

Steven said they noticed over the past few years a growing sophistication among Cebuano diners characterized by an openness to try new things and feel this is the right time to bring back the Ding How brand.

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Egg tarts.

Ding How menu

Today’s Ding How is for customers who want to relish dim sum and eat at a more leisurely pace, according to business development manager Christopher Kokseng.

He said the company’s three other brands are more associated with quick dim sum fixes, adding that a good location was one of the things taken into consideration when they brought back their “grandfather brand.”

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Ding How spread.

The company also looked into the old recipe books and did research and development so it can serve Ding How’s “heritage” dishes with a modern spin.

Dim sum orders like the crystal scallop and kuchay dumplings, baked shaopao, pork trotter, custard with salted egg bun are revived from the old menu and exclusively offered at Ding How.

Although they looked at what people enjoyed before and made it available again, Christopher said they also continue to serve the current favorites throughout their restaurant brands.

More photos of Ding How reopening

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Cabbage pouch.

 

Ding How reopens in Cebu

HERITAGE DISHES. Ding How looked into the old recipe books and did research and development so it can serve “heritage” dishes with a modern spin.

 

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Custard with salted egg bun.

 

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Crystal scallop and kuchay dumplings.

 

Ding How reopens in Cebu

Baked shaopao.

 

Ding How Cebu

Pork trotter.

 

Ding How reopens in Cebu

 

Ding How Cebu

Harbour City Dimsum House, Inc. business development manager Christopher Kokseng and marketing manager Steven Kokseng answer questions in a press conference on the reopening of Ding How.

No Comments on Ding How: oldtime Cebu favorite Chinese restaurant reopens

Tutelage Learning Center brings progressive education to south Cebu

With its small class sizes, individualized program for regular and special education students, child-centered curriculum, Tutelage Learning Center is every parent’s dream school. What’s even better for preschool and elementary…

With its small class sizes, individualized program for regular and special education students, child-centered curriculum, Tutelage Learning Center is every parent’s dream school.

What’s even better for preschool and elementary kids, Tutelage Learning Center (TLC) will start classes on August 1, 2017 in a second and bigger branch in Pakigne, Minglanilla.

Ava Kristine Rosello, vice president for administration, said they offer all levels of instruction from playgroups to sixth grade as well as early interaction programs for children with special needs.

Tutelage Cebu started out in 2006 with tutorial programs to aid schoolchildren and added classes gradually until they were able to offer the complete primary education levels. Its first school is located on Edros Road, Cebu City.

Tutelage Learning Center

PROGRESSIVE EDUCATION. Officials of the Tutelage Learning Center talk about their school in a press conference. TLC will start classes on August 1, 2017 in a second and bigger branch in Pakigne, Minglanilla.

John Dewey philosophy

TLC espouses the John Dewey method of instruction, which follows the progressive rather than the traditional way of teaching, explained senior curriculum advisor Lanore V. Suico.

She added that aside from the fewer students in Tutelage classrooms, they are also active participants, problem solvers, and planners in classes.

“John Dewey believed that kids learn best if they are doing the activities firsthand. At Tutelage, children express their thoughts and ask questions,” Suico also said.

Curriculum adviser Yollymar Lemente said that aside from the learning they get from academic lessons, kids are also taught such competencies as finance and life skills.

Teacher-student ratio

Riza Sorbito, TLC director, said their ratio per teacher is six to eight kids for the playgroup and nursery levels and 12 for the graders.

She said Tutelage is K-12 ready and has accreditation from the Department of Education (DepEd).

The school, she assured, has zero tolerance for bullying but teachers promote positive discipline.

Tutelage Learning Center decided to open in Pakigne, Minglanilla to cater to residents of the town as well as those in Talisay and Naga.

No Comments on Tutelage Learning Center brings progressive education to south Cebu

Philippine chocolate queen Raquel Choa shares life journey, passion

She didn’t know it then but Raquel Choa spent her childhood days in a place that shaped what she would become: Philippine chocolate queen and the amazing woman behind Ralfe…

She didn’t know it then but Raquel Choa spent her childhood days in a place that shaped what she would become: Philippine chocolate queen and the amazing woman behind Ralfe Gourmet, The Chocolate Chamber (TCC), and just recently, Batirol.

At a young age of seven, Choa went to live with her grandmas in a secluded mountain in Cebu when her parents separated.

It was in that remote community in Balamban in the early 1980s that she first encountered tablea, the bitter chocolate rounds that were popular with the villagers.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol Raquel Choa

BATIROL. The kiosk store concept is named after the wooden beater used to mix the tablea to make the sikwate. This is the latest project of Raquel Choa, who is dubbed the Philippine chocolate queen.

The Chocolate Chamber founder

Today, Choa is recognized for her work to elevate the quality of the products made from local cacao beans, starting with the chocolate buffets she organizes at her home in Cebu City and through her artisan chocolates and chocolate-flavored food and drinks that are available at The Chocolate Chamber restaurant.

The next step in her chocolate journey will be to make mainstream and add a new spin to tablea-based local delicacies such as “sikwate” and “champorado” through the Batirol.

Choa said the Batirol is a kiosk store concept created for franchising and it is a part of the business that her children will manage.

It is aptly named after the wooden beater used to mix the tablea to make the sikwate and was a fixture in households of old Cebu, said Choa’s right hand man Edu Patino.

Raquel Choa Batirol

PUTO-SIKWATE, CHAMPORADO. The puto sikwate and champorado used to be mainstays of the Cebuano dining table. Raquel Choa aims to make these mainstream again.

Food, drinks in Batirol menu

Batirol menu includes local favorites like sikwate, a drink made from tablea dissolved in water, and Chocondense, which is sikwate sweetened with condensed milk. Chocomallow is a chocolate drink topped with mallows.

This new twist to Ralfe Gourmet, Inc. intends to draw in the millennial crowd so drinks come hot or chilled. Since Batirol also seeks to reintroduce the wonders of tablea to young Filipinos, it makes available such delicacies as puto sikwate or sticky rice sprinkled with unpolished sugar and paired with sikwate and champorado or chocolate porridge.

Raquel Choa

Raquel Choa shares her life story.

The 41-year-old Choa also adds to the Batirol menu her soft rolls flavored with chocolate and baked with fillings like bacon and such Filipino favorites as longanisa and tocino.

In addition, she will also introduce one other use of a cacao-based product and that is using chocolate lava for painting, which will be one of the activities offered through Batirol.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol

SOFT ROLLS. Raquel Choa and her children with soft rolls flavored with chocolate and baked with fillings like bacon and such Filipino favorites as longanisa and tocino.

Maria Cacao tales

The journey from her early years to founder of Ralfe Gourmet, Inc. took a circuitous route but Choa said the bedtime stories of her grandma, Nanay Nila, sustained her all through those years of hardship.

“Oh, she was a great storyteller. I grew up with her bedtime stories. One in particular was about Maria Cacao. She was the queen of the cacao forest and she travels through the river to the open sea on a ship that turns to gold when she docks. That magical story of Maria Cacao warmed my heart and my love for the chocolate drink made with tablea, sikwate as we call it, remained even when my parents got back together and brought me back to the city after six years,” she said during a small gathering in May.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol

COSMETICS. Raquel Choa introduces her cosmetics line that include cacao butter for skin care.

During a trip she made to New York late in 2016, Choa said she met a lot of chocolate makers as well as boutique and shop owners.

“I realized that what makes us unique is we have a story to tell. Our chocolate has life, soul, and spirit and it comes from our ancestors,” she said.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol

SIKWATE. Just add hot water and these sticks turn into sikwate.

Casa de Cacao chocolate tours

Ralfe Gourmet holds chocolate appreciation tours at Casa de Cacao, which is also her residence in Casals Village in Mabolo, Cebu City.

Woven into these events is her chocolate story and the circumstances that led to her passion for creating products out of cacao. These are not limited to artisan chocolates or even chocolate-flavored food and drinks but include beauty products as well.

“The mountain where I came from, it was beautiful. The river was clear, it had a lot of rocks. I remember swimming there. In that mountain, there were a lot of treasures,” she added, recalling how they would collect banana leaves to sell for one peso a sack and coconut shells to turn into charcoal just to be able to buy kerosene for the house lamps.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol

RICE CRISPIES and peanuts make for a tasty chocolate snack.

Tablea beginnings

The mountain lass left Balamban but she would return decades later, grown up and married with eight children, to her grandma, Nanay Nila, and her other grandmothers, Nila’s sisters, to remember her childhood and learn more about the tablea that had featured prominently in her younger years.

“I got married when I was 16. I became a housewife. I stayed home and raised my children. I brought them to picnics in Ayala and I painted. I’m an artist by heart. I became an interior designer. Then our house in Cebu City was burned down in a fire. We had to stay in Lutopan for two years while we recovered. My kids had to transfer to La Salle,” she said.

It was there that she developed a friendship with the mother of her daughter’s classmate who was from Argentina.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol

CHOCOLATE PAINTING. Raquel Choa shows a painting done by a friend and using chocolate lava, one of her latest products.

Chocolate journey

Choa introduced the tablea to her Argentinian friend who had reservations about it at first because it looked dirty. She recalled how they decided to produce quality tablea and make a business of exporting it but it never took off because her friend had to return for good to Argentina.

“She left me with 300 kilos of tablea. I said to myself, ‘I’m a fighter’. I’ve been through so many challenges in my life. I can’t afford not to tell the whole world that we Filipinos know how to make chocolate in our own way,” she added.

She vowed that once her house in Cebu City was finished, she would focus on making chocolate as her artist’s canvas. About five years ago, she organized the first chocolate buffet at Casa de Cacao and that had been the beginning of her chocolate journey.

Chocolate Chamber Batirol

PAINTINGS. Raquel Choa and her kids with their paintings that use chocolate lava.

No Comments on Philippine chocolate queen Raquel Choa shares life journey, passion

Volunteers get boost from Smart-initiated Operation Smile app

Finding cleft patients has always been one of the biggest challenges for Operation Smile. Most of them are either located in impoverished, remote areas, or some of them are just…

Finding cleft patients has always been one of the biggest challenges for Operation Smile. Most of them are either located in impoverished, remote areas, or some of them are just not confident enough to seek treatment due to their physical appearance.

An initiative by PLDT wireless subsidiary Smart Communications, however, seeks to address this problem. The Operation Smile patient-mapping mobile application, which was conceptualized by Smart for Operation Smile Philippines (OSP), was deployed during a recent medical mission in Bacolod City.

“Most patients are in the provinces. The challenge is how to find them. Another challenge is that when you have a facial deformity, you don’t go out,” said Wiggy Fontanilla, OSP president. “This mapping and tracking system changes the whole endeavor by coming up with a heat map of patients.”

Better access, monitoring

At the Bacolod medical mission, volunteers have recorded cleft patients’ details using the app, as Operation Smile aims to store patient information on the Web for better access and monitoring.

Arleen Antolo, 24, a speech teacher at Hope Foundation and volunteer for Operation Smile, travels for at least two hours from Bacolod to far-flung rural health units and barangay health centers in Negros Occidental to meet with other volunteers and cleft patients for possible inclusion in succeeding medical missions.

Antolo, who has been a volunteer for three years now, said her love for teaching and for children were what drove her to help in Operation Smile. “It feels good to help cleft patients, and see them smile. Being treated will definitely help them have a better future,” she said.

Operation Smile app

Operation Smile volunteer Arleen Antolo (left) takes a photo of a 7-month-old cleft patient using the Operation Smile app in Barangay Bago, Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental.

Lessen paperwork

She expressed appreciation for the app, which she used to record patient details during the Bacolod mission. “This will help lessen paperwork—we won’t need to carry folders of patient records, which may get lost or even get wet when the rain comes,” Antolo said.

The Operation Smile app is available as a free download for iOS and Android devices. Anyone can download and use the app—just open an account and follow the instructions on uploading patient information.

Patient details gathered through the app will be uploaded to the central server of Operation Smile, which will use the information to monitor patients’ treatment and plan for the locations of succeeding medical missions.

Closer to communities

“In our efforts to use technology for good, we partner with institutions such as Operation Smile, which seeks to bring healthcare closer to communities. We support Operation Smile as it aims to eradicate the backlog of cleft conditions worldwide,” said Ramon R. Isberto, public affairs group head for PLDT and Smart.

For its part, Operation Smile has expressed its appreciation for Smart’s efforts. “We sincerely appreciate all that [Smart has] done to help us give people with cleft conditions new smiles,” the global Operation Smile unit said on its Twitter account. (Press release)

To support Operation Smile, Smart subscribers may also donate by texting SMILE (space) (amount) to 4483.

No Comments on Volunteers get boost from Smart-initiated Operation Smile app

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

Global Cebu FC fails to break Davao Aguilas defense, settles for draw

Global Cebu FC wasted a golden chance to go on top after settling to a scoreless draw against a gritty Davao Aguilas at the Cebu City Sports Center in the…

Global Cebu FC wasted a golden chance to go on top after settling to a scoreless draw against a gritty Davao Aguilas at the Cebu City Sports Center in the Philippines Football League.

Global Cebu remains at second place with 21 points, two off leaders Meralco Manila, which saw its unbeaten streak ending in embarrassing fashion with a 7-0 loss to the rampaging Ceres Negros.

A win would have put Global on top on goal difference over Meralco.

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Matt Hartmann splits the Davao defense. (Photo by Albert Flores)

“The players tried really hard but Davao was better organized on defense and they were able to adjust well,” said Global Cebu coach Marjo Allado.

Global Cebu controlled the pace of the match but couldn’t break through in the final third. Misagh Bahadoran, who had two against the Stallions, was ineffective up front, while Sekou Sylla, who came in the second half for Paolo Bugas, couldn’t get past Keeper Marko Trkulja.

Global Cebu Davao Aguilas

Davao Aguilas Jordan Jarvis receives his citation from the Sportswriters Association of Cebu or SAC for making the national u19 team. (Photo by Albert Flores)

The Davao custodian, who was named the Man of the Match, also collected a last-minute header off Sylla deep in injury time to preserve the draw.

“I’m very happy getting the Man of the match but it was the team that helped me make those saves,” said Trkulja.

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Shu Sasaki (25) tries to get past his defender. (Photo by Albert Flores)

Shu Sasaki, whose bicycle kick capped Global Cebu’s 3-0 win over the Stallions, also had a brilliant chance but his first touch off a lovely through ball from Paul Mulders was just too strong.

“Obviously very happy with the results today compared to the last time. They were very organized and Trkilja managed the back four very well,” said Davao coach Gary Philippis, whose team lost to Kaya FC, 5-1, at home in their last game.

More photos of the match by Albert Flores

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

Global Cebu FC Davao Aguilas

No Comments on Global Cebu FC fails to break Davao Aguilas defense, settles for draw

ITF 2017: Airfare, room promos, and other travel deals

Super seat sale by airline companies, resort and hotel room promos, tour packages, plus information on top Philippine places, the ongoing International Travel Festival (ITF) 2017 at Ayala Center Cebu…

Super seat sale by airline companies, resort and hotel room promos, tour packages, plus information on top Philippine places, the ongoing International Travel Festival (ITF) 2017 at Ayala Center Cebu has all you need to plan your trips for the rest of the year and even up to the middle of 2018.

SilkAir, Cathay Pacific, PAL, AirAsia, and EVA Air offer promo fares for travel to destinations throughout their routes.

ITF 2017

The tourism offices of the different provinces in the Philippines have booths at the ITF 2017 to answer questions about travel to their popular tourist spots.

The ITF, now its fourth year, is a platform to connect travelers with hotels, resorts, airline companies, and travel agencies.

Hotels and resorts that are participating in the travel event organized by MyEventology.Co include Cebu City Marriott Hotel, Montebello Villa Hotel, Amorita, Bellevue, Hennan, Jpark Island Resort and Waterpark, Shangri-La’s Mactan Resort and Spa, and Bluewater resorts in Maribago, Sumilon, and Bohol among others.

ITF 2017 Cebu

Among the provinces that sent representatives to ITF in Ayala Center Cebu include Aklan, Camiguin, Negros Occidental, Palawan, Pampanga, Cebu, and La Union as well as the City Government of Zamboanga.

The ITF 2017, which started on July 14, will end this Sunday. With the promos being offered during the event, the ITF 2017 certainly has something to offer all kinds of travelers. (Article and photos by Rafelle Allego, UP MassCom Intern)

More photos of ITF 2017

ITF 2017 Cebu

ITF 2017 Cebu

ITF 2017 Cebu

ITF 2017 Cebu

ITF 2017 Cebu

ITF 2017 Cebu

ITF 2017 Cebu

No Comments on ITF 2017: Airfare, room promos, and other travel deals

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

Batibot now on App Store

Educational app develops essential thinking skills among children Parents using iOS-powered smartphones and tablets can now download for free the Batibot mobile application, an interactive version of the beloved TV…

Educational app develops essential thinking skills among children

Parents using iOS-powered smartphones and tablets can now download for free the Batibot mobile application, an interactive version of the beloved TV show that helps enhance learning among children.

Earlier launched on the Android platform, the app features fun games that teach kids basic learning concepts like matching, sorting, and grouping. The app also lets children practice tracing letters with the proper strokes, and helps them identify shapes, colors, numbers, and letter sounds.

The Batibot app is the first educational app in Filipino that is aligned with the kindergarten curriculum of the Department of Education.

Aligned with curriculum

The app’s “Awiting Batibot” feature enables kids to sing along to Batibot songs, while “Kuwentong Batibot” contains local stories that promote good values.

What makes the Batibot app stand out from other educational apps is that it is the only app in the Filipino language that is aligned with the kindergarten curriculum of the Department of Education.

The Batibot app is the product of a collaboration among Smart Communications, Community of Learners Foundation, and developer startup OrangeFix. The app jumpstarted Smart’s efforts to work with various communities and organizations to create literacy apps in local languages.

Batibot app

The app features local stories that promote Filipino values.

Filipino language, values

Smart public affairs head Mon Isberto said that since the Batibot app was launched on the Android platform, a lot of parents had inquired as to when it would be downloadable on iOS devices.

“Many parents based here and abroad said their kids had grown up speaking English, and that they wanted their children to be proficient in the Filipino language too. The Batibot app will certainly help them brush up on Filipino in a fun, interactive way,” he said.

“When you search for educational content online, you’ll find that most of them are in English. There is a need for digital learning content that promotes the Filipino language as well as Filipino values. The Batibot app addresses that need,” Isberto added.

Kids can now have the fun Batibot experience that their parents had, through the Batibot app.

Technocart, School-in-a-Bag

To bring the Batibot app to remote, underserved communities, Smart installs the app in the tablets it donates to public schools under the TechnoCart and School-in-a-Bag programs.

Smart TechnoCart, which is donated to public schools with electricity, is a 2×2 ft mobile laboratory containing 20 tablets for students, as well as a laptop, projector, and mobile Wi-Fi with starter load for the teacher. The School-in-a-Bag, which is meant for remote public schools without electricity, is a backpack containing a solar panel, a laptop, five tablets, a mobile phone, a pocket Wi-Fi with starter load, LED TV, and learning modules.

Smart as well as individual and corporate sponsors have so far donated TechnoCarts to 40 schools, and School-in-a-Bag units to 18 schools all over the Philippines.

Teachers of the recipient schools are given training on tablet basics and on child and curriculum development.

Powerful learning tools

“Combined with guidance from elders, mobile devices and the internet can be powerful tools in enhancing learning among children,” Isberto said.

“Batibot helped shape a generation of Filipinos, many of whom are now parents and teachers. They now have an opportunity to share the Batibot learning experience with their children and students through the Batibot app,” he added.

To know more about Smart’s initiatives to use technology for the development of different social sectors like education, please follow the Smart Communities page on Facebook. Those interested to sponsor Smart TechnoCarts or School-in-a-Bag units may send an email to TechnoCart@smart.com.ph for more information. (Press release)

No Comments on Batibot now on App Store

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

Smart provides more free charging services in quake-affected areas

With the extended power outage in the earthquake-affected provinces of Eastern Visayas, PLDT wireless unit Smart Communications is expanding its Libreng Charging efforts to allow more subscribers to stay connected….

With the extended power outage in the earthquake-affected provinces of Eastern Visayas, PLDT wireless unit Smart Communications is expanding its Libreng Charging efforts to allow more subscribers to stay connected.

Smart has extended communications assistance to residents and disaster response units following the magnitude 6.5 earthquake that recently hit Jaro, Leyte, and affected nearby cities, municipalities and provinces.

Mobile network not damaged

According to Ramon R. Isberto, PLDT and Smart Public Affairs Head: “Even as some areas are hampered by the power loss, our mobile network was not damaged by the quake. Our subscribers in the area have sufficient load because our dealer network remains intact. We are addressing the need of our subscribers to recharge their devices.”

Power outages were experienced in Leyte, Bohol and the Samar provinces after the quake, prompting the telco to open up a number of its cell sites, offices and retail stores in the region as free charging and free calling stations for affected residents.

Smart Libreng Charging

Residents charge their mobile devices at a Libreng Charging station at the Smart cell site in Barangay Linao, Ormoc.

Communication support was also provided to Leyte’s Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, for easier coordination in the province’s three worst-hit localities—Ormoc City, Kananga and Jaro.

Free charging, free calls

Smart has also partnered with local government units, and its distributor network in the region to set up more Libreng Charging and Libreng Tawag centers in strategic areas such as the local gymnasium and the provincial loading stations.

Recognizing communications as an important form of relief, Smart has been consistent in immediately providing communication as aid in the form of free calls and charging services, and emergency communication links during disasters, to help government and humanitarian agencies coordinate and deliver more effective relief efforts to affected communities.

The list of Smart’s free calling and charging centers is updated regularly through its community partnerships Facebook account, facebook.com/SmartCommunities. (Press release)

No Comments on Smart provides more free charging services in quake-affected areas

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

Discounted airline fares, tour packages offered in Grand Travel Bazaar

Plan your international trips out of Cebu with promo fares from top local and international airline companies available at the Grand Travel Bazaar that is ongoing at The Gallery in…

Plan your international trips out of Cebu with promo fares from top local and international airline companies available at the Grand Travel Bazaar that is ongoing at The Gallery in Ayala Center Cebu.

SilkAir and Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, EVA Air, Korean Air, Emirates, and PAL offer seat sales to several destinations across the globe from July 7 up to July 9, 2017 at the BPI-exclusive travel event.

Grand Travel Bazaar Cebu

GRAND TRAVEL BAZAAR. The event is ongoing at The Gallery in Ayala Center Cebu until Sunday.

Southeast Asian countries

Economy class return fares to Southeast Asian countries on SilkAir and Singapore Airlines start from US$190 per person, for a minimum of two passengers booking tickets. Single ticket purchase for the same destination is slightly higher at US$240. The quoted fares include government taxes and surcharges but do not include the Philippine travel tax.

For travel to places in North Asia, including Fukuoka, Haneda, Narita, Osaka, and Nagoya in Japan, Incheon in Korea, and Hong Kong, promo fares range from US$230 to US$360.

Discounted fares to countries in West Asia and Africa, Southwest Pacific, and Europe as well as several US destinations are also available.

Grand Travel Bazaar Cebu

The Grand Travel Bazaar is exclusive to BPI Credit, Debit or Prepaid Cardholders. BPI cardholders may avail of the travel deals at zero percent interest rate for up to three months.

Exclusive to BPI cards

Cathay Pacific fares to Hong Kong start from US$75 for economy class but these do not include service and insurance charges and other taxes. Other destinations on sale include China, Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia, West and East Coast, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and the Middle East.

Taipei flights out of Cebu on EVA Air start from US$195 while low season economy fares to US destinations range from US$648 for Los Angeles and Seattle to US$802 for Houston.

0% interest for 3 months

Top travel and tour agencies in Cebu are also selling discounted packages.

The Grand Travel Bazaar is exclusive to BPI Credit, Debit or Prepaid Cardholders. BPI cardholders may avail of the travel deals at zero percent interest rate for up to three months.

No Comments on Discounted airline fares, tour packages offered in Grand Travel Bazaar

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

Asus ZenFone AR highlights augmented reality, virtual reality capabilities

From checking out how furniture looks in a room you’re decorating to seeing dinosaurs in the sala as you tell a story to your kids or even doing a virtual…

From checking out how furniture looks in a room you’re decorating to seeing dinosaurs in the sala as you tell a story to your kids or even doing a virtual and yet hyper-realistic tour of a car, augmented reality (AR) plays a central role in the Asus ZenFone AR.

The latest flagship device from Asus was highlighted during a gathering of developers in Mandaue City last Saturday.

Asus ZenFone AR

ASUS ZENFONE AR with VR headset and controller.

The ZenFone AR will be available starting July 17 but the company provided a preview during the Google I/O Extended Cebu 2017 last July 1. Mike Santos, of Asus product and brand marketing – smartphones, said they are working with developers to build AR applications for use on ZenFone AR.

Asus ZenFone AR specs

Santos did a demonstration for journalists and bloggers on the capabilities of the ZenFone AR. He said the phone supports both Google Tango and Daydream. Tango is an AR technology while Daydream offers immersive virtual reality or VR.

Santos said the phone is able to do this because of its top of the line specs: Snapdragon 821 optimized for Tango and up to 8GB of RAM. “That’s like your laptop,” Santos said.

Asus Zenfone AR Cebu

AR DEMO. Mike Santos of Asus product and brand marketing – smartphones demonstrates the augmented reality capability of the ZenFone AR with a virtual and yet realistic tour of a BMW unit.

The ZenFone AR has a TriCam system that lets the phone track your location as you move through space. It also has depth-sensing. This Santos demonstrated through an augmented reality tour of a BMW vehicle. Using the phone, Santos was able to show reporters and bloggers features of the car – from the engine to its interior – as if they were checking an actual vehicle.

Interior design, Harry Potter game

Santos also did a demonstration of how the phone can overlay furniture on a live camera view of a room: allowing a homeowner to preview design options. He also did a demonstration of how AR can be used for shopping of dresses via an augmented reality display of the items.

For its virtual reality capability, Santos did a demonstration through a Harry Potter game that transported the player to the popular book’s universe by donning the phone as a VR headset and using a controller to wield a virtual magic wand.

Asus ZenFone AR Cebu

VIRTUAL REALITY DEMO. Students check out the VR capability of the ZenFone AR with an immersive Harry Potter game.

No Comments on Asus ZenFone AR highlights augmented reality, virtual reality capabilities

Celebrity chef Tristan Encarnacion talks burgers

An afternoon of burger-making with celebrity chef Tristan Encarnacion at Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino demonstrated three distinct ways to prepare this very American fare sans the beef patty….

An afternoon of burger-making with celebrity chef Tristan Encarnacion at Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino demonstrated three distinct ways to prepare this very American fare sans the beef patty.

Waterfront Cebu prepares a line-up of activities in its “4th of July” celebration of Filipino-American Friendship Day, from the American food buffet available at UNO up to July 4 and the exhibit of American retail brands to the make your own burger event with chef Tristan today, July 3.

Chef Tristan’s ultimate chicken burger featured chicken marinated in buttermilk. The pulled pork adobo with “mungga,” meanwhile, combined baby back ribs cooked adobo-style until tender flavored with mung beans gravy and topped with sweet mango.

BURGER FLAVORS. (From left) Cardava banana peels as patty, pulled pork adobo with monggo gravy and topped with diced mango, and ultimate chicken burger.

Taste of the burger patty

He told media and bloggers who attended the event that the trick to making burgers is to consider the amount of fat to lean meat in the patty.

“The taste of the patty depends on the doneness of the meat. Those who want rare to medium rare patties should ensure more lean meat in the mix,” he added.

A third burger had of all things banana peel as the main ingredient.

Chef Tristan Encarnacion

Chef Tristan Encarnacion demonstrates the making of burgers in an event for bloggers and journalists at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.

Cardava banana

To make it, chef Tristan said he boiled the peels of the cardava banana for about an hour, removed and washed them, and simmered them again in boiling water until tender. The peels are minced with a knife before spices and seasoning as well as eggs and bread flour are added.

Once formed into patties, these can be stored in the freezer to cook later. To complement the banana peel as patty, he added tomato salsa as topping.

Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino

Pulled pork adobo burger with “mungga” combines baby back ribs cooked adobo-style until tender flavored with mung beans gravy and topped with sweet mango.

To give it the smoky taste of beef, one can choose to add a dash of steak sauce or mix meat with the banana peel to form the patty.

Waterfront Cebu is looking into making the burgers available in the menu.

chef Tristan Encarnacion

The ultimate chicken burger features chicken marinated in buttermilk .

 

chef Tristan Encarnacion

BANANA PEEL. This burger has a patty made of cardava banana peels boiled, minced, and cooked with spices.

 

No Comments on Celebrity chef Tristan Encarnacion talks burgers

New promos, big discounts in SM City Consolacion sale from September 15 to 17

DOE raids illegal LPG refilling station in Mandaue City

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