Business Entrepreneurship

DTI brings integrated services to small businesses in Negosyo, Konsyumer caravan

Micro to medium enterprises and would-be entrepreneurs get an overview of the different services of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) during the three-day Negosyo, Konsyumer at Iba Pa caravan in Cebu from June 9-11, 2016.

The three-day event aims to equip micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) as well as those who aspire to start their own business with additional learning on such topics as food safety, e-commerce, intellectual property, financing, and global markets, said DTI Secretary Adrian S. Cristobal Jr.

DTI Secretary Adrian S. Cristobal Jr.
MORE EFFECTIVE. DTI Secretary Adrian S. Cristobal Jr. says they wanted to put “together all services and products of DTI and make them more effective for MSMEs.” (Photo: Marlen Limpag)

“Early this year, we decided to put together all services and products of DTI and make them more effective for MSMEs,” he said during the opening of the event in Cebu on Thursday, adding that those who come to the caravan can access a range of information–from the basic requirements for starting a business to accessing markets.

DTI products, services

Cristobal added that aside from raising awareness on DTI activities, the Negosyo, Konsyumer at Iba Pa event allows the agency to bring its partners together and provides an opportunity for calibrating and synchronizing its different services.

In case of access to financing, which is the main challenge for small businesses, DTI has included the Small Business Corporation (SB Corp.) in the caravan. SB Corp. caters to the segment that cannot yet be served by banks, which require collaterals for business loans.

Gov. Hilario Davide III
CAPITOL SUPPORT. Cebu Gov. Hilario Davide III says the facility is an excellent venue for the development of local enterprises. He said the province is supportive of businesses and has put up an investment promotions center. (Photo: Marlen Limpag)

SB Corp. president and chief executive officer Bartholomew Brillo L. Reynes said the state-owned financial institution has loaned out P600 million of its P2 billion portfolio. In Cebu, he added, they’ve provided loans to poultry businesses in Bantayan hard hit by super typhoon Yolanda in 2013.

Negosyo, Konsyumer caravan

There will be trainings and simultaneous sessions up to Saturday, June 11, and booths where interested participants can have personalized consultation with experts, said DTI Central Visayas Regional Director Aster C. Caberte.

Breakout workshops set for tomorrow, Friday, include expanding businesses through e-commerce, online marketing, food safety, intellectual property rights and capability building. On Saturday, participants can pick from the following topics: effective business branding, integrating into the global market, and the Slingshot program for startups and innovators.

The maker trainings happening on Friday and Saturday will tackle basic digital fabrication technology and material manipulation as well as design modeling using state-of-the-art fabrication equipment at the newly launched FabLab in UP Cebu. The open access FabLab has a 3D printer, laser cutter, printer and cutter, desktop vinyl cutter, CNC router (shopbot), and small CNC Benchtop milling machine. DTI also launched on Thursday, June 18, the Negosyo Center at UP Cebu that includes a co-working space and training room. DTI said it will come out with the policies for the use of these shared services soon.

DTI Negosyo Center Cebu
NEGOSYO CENTER. The Negosyo Center at UP Cebu includes a co-working space and training room. (Photo: Marlen Limpag)

Governor Davide signs revised agreement for Ciudad Project

Cebu Province and Fifth Avenue Development Corp. signed an amended build, transfer and operate agreement to resuscitate the long-stalled Ciudad Project in Banilad, Cebu City.

Cebu Governor Hilario P. Davide III, representing the Cebu Provincial Government, expressed his optimism on the project’s realization. “We endeavored to correct the mistakes before. Naniguro gyud ko nga ang agreement gi-signan karon naa na gyuy authority (from the Provincial Board),” he said.

Michael Dino, executive vice president of Fifth Ave., also expressed their desire to move forward with the project. “We are rushing as well. This has been stalled for quite some time already. We are itching to start the project,” he said.

He said the project cost may now reach P2 billion.

Fifth Avenue recently entered into a memorandum of understanding with Filinvest Land Inc. (FLI), which would finance the development of the Ciudad property, as well as act as its “exclusive marketing, operation and management arm.”


Cebu News Digest Jan. 7, 2015: More Sinulog contingents, leaner crowd; barangay captain shot dead; Rama still hopes Pope will visit Cebu

Sinulog organizers say the visit by Pope Francis next week will impact Sinulog attendance. Those in Luzon or Leyte would likely attend papal visit activities rather than fly to Cebu for the Sinulog. Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama and some local government and church officials, however, still talk up hopes for the pope to swing by Cebu.

Meanwhile, another public official has been shot dead in an ambush. Here are the top stories in Cebu’s papers today, January 7, 2015.

Sinulog 2015
SINULOG IS HERE. Organizers say they expect more contingents to join this year’s Sinulog grand parade. (Photo by Teddy Uy used with permission from the Sinulog Foundation)

Organizers see fewer people attending Sinulog but expect more contingents joining festivities

Sinulog organizers expect fewer people to attend Sinulog activities because of Pope Francis’ visit to Manila and Tacloban starting next week. On top of the papal visit, many flights have been cancelled because Manila has been declared a no-fly zone at certain hours when Pop Francis will arrive on January 15 and leave on January 19.

Sinulog Foundation Inc. Executive Director Ricky Ballesteros said many in Luzon and Leyte will choose to join activities with the Pope in Manila or in Tacloban rather than head to Cebu for the Sinulog since the visit is a “once-in-a-lifetime experience.”

“Affected gyud ang Sinulog ani (in terms of number of people) because they are torn between two big events… Those from Luzon, Manila and Leyte might decide to attend the Pope’s activities instead,” — Sinulog Foundation Inc. Executive Director Ricky Ballesteros during the Association of Government Information Officers forum.

Ballesteros said that as of January 6, 36 contingents have confirmed joining the grand parade. They expect the number to increase to 45 next week, more than last year’s 42 contingents.

Ballesteros said the history of Cebu will be told in the grand finale performance.

“Sinulog is Cebu. Let us defend, protect and contribute to its success. To all the undesirables, please take a leave and be spiritual instead. Attend all the religious activities at the basilica,” — Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama

Mayor Rama still hopes Pope Francis will visit Cebu

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said he still hopes Pope Francis will visit Cebu, which he repeatedly pointed out as the cradle of Christianity in the Philippines. The city is also “very near” Tacloban City, which the pope will visit.

“I can’t understand why the Pope can’t drop by Cebu. I don’t understand why such an arrangement can’t be done and Manila is being highlighted. But let’s continue to pray,” — Mayor Michael Rama

Cebu Daily News and Sun.Star Cebu
FRONT PAGES. Today’s front pages of Cebu Daily News and Sun.Star Cebu

Toledo barangay captain shot dead

A barangay captain of Toledo City was shot dead Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. while driving his Ford Everest SUV on the national highway after dropping off his children at school.

Timoteo Largo, 65, died in a ditch where he was gunned down allegedly by Dionesio Juarez. Largo is the barangay captain of Cambang-ug, Toledo City. Juarez, on the other hand, was identified as a member of Civil Service Unit (CSU) of the Toledo City Hall and a police asset.

Toledo City Police Chief Ricky Delelis told Sun.Star Cebu they are considering 2 motives for the attack: 1) Largo’s refusal to accept illegal drugs payment and 2) Largo’s refusal to allow Juarez to be part of the sand and gravel business in the barangay.

“Istoryahan nato ni, pre (Let’s talk about this).” Timoteo Largo to Dionesio Juarez shortly before the killing.

Capitol meeting
SOLVING BRIDGE PROBLEM. Cebu Governor Hilario P. Davide III meets with officials from Sibonga town and other government agencies to speed up solution to the collapse of the Dumlog bridge connecting the towns of Argao and Sibonga. (Cebu Province PIO photo)

DSWD says Ronda mayor turned down offer to provide relief goods before Seniang

DSWD 7 Assistant Director Shailane Marie Lucero said they offered to supply relief goods to Ronda before Tropical Storm Seniang made landfall but Ronda Mayor Mariano Blanco III wanted these only after the storm.

Lucero said they could not distribute the relief goods because they needed a signed request from Mayor Blanco since all calamity-related expenses of DSWD are subject to audit. The goods would have been delivered immediately had the mayor signed the letter

“We are only following the law, otherwise we will go to jail.” — DSWD 7 Assistant Director Shailane Marie Lucero

Sun.Star Cebu: Ronda ‘turned down’ DSWD’s offer to provide relief goods before storm

Also interesting:


Local retailers seek government protection

Local retailers are asking for “special non-discriminatory locations” and special rates for businesses located in Mandaue and Cebu Cities. Philippine Retailers Association (PRA) – Cebu Chapter president Robert Go said this would help local retailers reeling from the challenges of the dominance by global brands of the market.

“Many of our home grown retailers are helpless and have nowhere to go, either deteriorating or are running out of business, being too dependent on malls,” — Robert Go.

Suroy-Suroy Sugbo bookings on the rise

Cebu Provincial Government tourism consultant Patria Aurora Roa has reported strong demand for the “Suroy-Suroy sa Sugbo” program for the southern part of the province. She said the southern leg will have new destinations such as the Aguinid Falls in Samboan and Mainit Spring in Malabuyoc.

The Freeman: Bookings for Southern Suroy-Suroy on the rise

Events Feature Heritage News

Cebu-wide digital tourism project launched in Argao

When someone mentions torta, I usually and immediately think of Argao because I associate this popular Cebu delicacy with the town. I’m sure a lot of Cebuanos do the same.

Our frequent visits to Argao however have made me realize that its indigenous industries of torta and tableya, another specialty, are just one of the many facets that make up this southern town of Cebu.

From research and interviews, I’ve learned things about Argao that are not common knowledge and have come to better appreciate my visits. Beyond the torta, and it is delicious by the way, I’ve come to know Argao as a town steeped in history, rich in socio-cultural heritage, and with an abundance of natural resources.

Trips are truly more meaningful if you know what to look for in a place. The problem is, information about Cebu’s rich historical and socio-cultural heritage as it relates to towns like Argao is not easily accessible to the ordinary traveler.

argao guide
The unveiling of a quick response (QR) code marker marks the start in Argao of a province-wide implementation of a digital tourism program for Cebu. In the photo are: (from L) Argao Vice Mayor Stanley Caminero, PLDT-Smart Public Affairs head Mon Isberto, Cebu Gov. Hilario “Junjun” Davide III, Argao Mayor Edsel Galeos, and InnoPub co-founder Max Limpag.

Take for example the San Miguel Arcangel Church, a late 18th century structure remaining of Spanish colonial times.

While it may seem at first glance to be like any other church built by the Spanish clergy, this structure in Argao differs in the artistic and elaborate ornamentation that can be found on the facade, pediment, retablo, pulpit, ceiling, and other interior portions.

A marker at the Argao Hall of Justice contains a short paragraph about the structure and  a quick response (QR) code that allows the download of more information when scanned with a smartphone or tablet.
A marker at the Argao Hall of Justice contains a short paragraph about the structure and a quick response (QR) code that allows the download of more information when scanned with a smartphone or tablet.

Its facade, according to Paul Gerschwiler in his historical outline of Argao, is divided into nine panels by two double cornices that intersect with four vertical paired half columns and only five of the more than 160 Augustinian churches used this style, all of them built in the southeastern coast of Cebu.

This and other relevant information related to the church in particular and travel to the town in general is being made available to travelers through a digital tourism program that is a collaboration among our new media start-up, InnoPub, our main partner Smart Communications, Inc., and the local governments of Cebu Province and Argao.

Our digital tourism project comes in three components. It involves a web-based guide to Argao, mobile application format, and markers placed on historical and heritage structures. The markers carry quick response codes which allows guests to download more information when scanned with a smartphone or tablet. The guide, web-based an app versions, lists all places and activities of interest in the town.

The project was launched Friday at Argao’s historic “cabecera” or town center, with Cebu Gov. Hilario “Junjun” Davide, Argao Mayor Edsel Galeos, and PLDT-Smart public affairs head Mon Isberto in attendance.

If you ever find yourself going around the town, we have a quick guide accessible at, mobile app for Android devices that can be downloaded at Google Play, and QR code markers placed on important structures within the “cabecera de Argao.”