Multi-awarded Filipina entrepreneur launches new book to empower other women entrepreneurs
MANILA, Philippines (September 15, 2015) – Myrna Tang Yao, the savvy tycoon who made Barbie™ famous in the Philippines, shares her passion and journey from being a micro entrepreneur to CEO of several companies in her new book, “The Gift of a Dream: The GREAT Women Project,” launching last Tuesday, September 15, 2015 6:00 PM at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila.
In her book, Yao also details how as a young woman, she dreamt of one day succeeding in business so she could help underprivileged women break free from helplessness due to poverty. Her dream soon became a reality when she was appointed Chair of the Philippine Commission on Women. She was tasked to spearhead the nationwide Gender-Responsive Economic Actions for the Transformation of Women (GREAT Women) Project, “a governance and capacity development project that aims to promote and support a gender-responsive enabling environment for women’s economic empowerment, particularly those in microenterprises.” The project continues to succeed, thanks to Yao’s framework based on her invaluable business insights.
Joey Concepcion of RFM Corporation and Go Negosyo says of her book, “This book shall serve as an inspiration to women most especially to women entrepreneurs who are in their journey of reaching success. Myrna Yao’s passion is evident in all her works from her humble beginnings up until today.”
Bo Sanchez, bestselling author, also praises Yao’s latest achievement: “From page one, you’ll see Myrna’s fearless passion. But more than that, you’ll be deeply touched by her great love for disenfranchised women. These suffering women are the reason why she wakes up in the morning. Thank you Myrna for inspiring all of us and teaching us how to live.”
Indeed, the best validations come from those who benefitted from the GREAT Women Project themselves. Erlin Sullano, 35 years old, hails from Bacolod City, and has this to say about Myrna Yao’s brainchild project: “My husband was jobless a month before I delivered my fourth child. I had no experience in peddling, but I needed to earn for the baby’s delivery so I peddled food items. A lot of good-hearted people would give me money and not take my goods out of pity. A few weeks after giving birth, when our meager resources were all spent, I had no choice but to look for work. I became a manicurist.
“After 2 years, my clientele grew and then came The GREAT Women Project where I learned more and was given better tools for my trade and got a Certificate of Completion. I am very thankful for the training and certification through the project, as it has given me a better life. I have become a popular manicurist in my barangay and I am now able to save money. I was able to get our house fixed, buy appliances and, feed and clothe my children. As a woman, I now feel that I have the power to make my life and my family’s life change for the better.”
It seems the seed of Myrna Yao’s dream to empower a woman through entrepreneurship, can transform not just one woman’s life, but that of her family, and community, too.
“The Gift of a Dream: The GREAT Women Project” is published in partnership with the Vibal Publishing House, Inc., and is also available in digital format through their website, www.vibalpublishing.com.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: MYRNA TANG-YAO
A multi-awarded entrepreneur and champion of women’s rights and empowerment, MYRNA YAO is CEO of five companies including RichPrime Global, Inc., and Richwell Trading Corporation, founder and chairperson of The Philippine Federation of Local Council of Women, The Federation of the Filipino Chinese Business and Professional Women of the Philippines, the Pearl S. Buck Philippines and also served as the Chairperson of the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) for six years. (PCW is the policy making body of the government in implementing laws on women and gender empowerment). Some of the numerous awards she has received include the International Entrepreneur Award by the Global Summit of Women in 2006, the Gold Prize Award for Women’s World Excellence Award in Beijing, and the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2003. She was also granted the 2006 Presidential Merit Award by the President of the Republic of the Philippines for her success in the field of entrepreneurship in both local and international levels.
From its humble beginnings, her business has grown to include the marketing and distribution of children’s products from toys to fashion and shoes under the brands of Barbie, Hotwheels, Mattel toys and games, Fisher Price, Megablocks, Disney, Ninja Turtles, V-Tech, Ollie and more. She is very passionate in serving women and children, who inspire her to continue developing products which cater to kids’ needs. Starting with only 10 employees, her company now hires and provides livelihood to 1,400 employees.
To help underprivileged women in the Philippines, Myrna was instrumental in pushing for the enactment of Magna Carta of Women to law. The MCW is a comprehensive women’s human rights law that seeks to eliminate violence against women, and ensure equal earning opportunity, among others. She spearheaded the GREAT Women Project, which helps alleviate poverty by engaging and mentoring women into becoming micro entrepreneurs, and connecting them with different Government Agencies and business networks.