Archive for July, 2014

Agrinegosyo is Key to Poverty Alleviation

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014
For PNIOT July 31_Resized

Go Negosyo awarded the 15 Most Inspiring Agripreneurs 2014 at the first Agri-Negosyo Summit last Friday, July 25, 2014. (Front row L-R) Ronald Costales, Costales Farms; Tennyson Chen, Bounty Fresh; Jacqueline Alleje, Rizal Dairy Farms; Senen Bacani, La Frutera Inc.; Bambi Barcelona in behalf of Arsenio Barcelona, Harbest Agribusiness; Joseph Calata, Calata Corporation; Danilo Fausto, DVF Dairy Farm. (Second row L-R) Martin and Pilamar Ozaeta, Gemsun Marketing; Maximo Ricohermoso, MCPI; Arestina Papillon, Pamora Farms; Henry Lim Bon Liong, SL Agritech; Jeffrey Lim, JSJ Goat Farm; Neil Molina, JCDAF Dairy Farm; Mylene Matti, Greenearth Heritage Foundation; Anita Celdran, Philippine Biochar Association. The awards are presented by: (Third row L-R) Justin Uy, Kat Abelarde, Rosalind Wee, Sen. Cynthia Villar, Joey Concepcion, Usec. Bern Puyat, Amb. Reuben Levermore and Felix Ang.

Last Friday, we conducted our first Agri-Negosyo Summit and it was a huge success! It showed the very strong interest on this vital sector in the economy. We just expected about two thousand to attend, but two days before the event we had close to six thousand confirming participants including more agriprenuers willing to pay a nominal fee to attend, plus schools wanting to send more delegates. Luckily we were able to move to a much bigger hall at the World Trade Center and over seven thousand people came, and this shocked us and our guest speakers that day. Our 15 Agriprenuer awardees and our 40 speakers were in awe with the packed crowd as none of us expected the interest level in agri business to be this high.

In my speech, I mentioned that I am happy to see many people attending this session in agri. The notion of agriculture to many Filipinos is poverty. We hear stories of farmers in the countryside finding it difficult to make both ends meet, and whose children have no intention of becoming a farmer. What we see in post cards is a struggling farmer plowing the rice fields or a poor fisherman in his banca, catching fish. These are the images we see as we drive around the Philippines. We cannot put an end to poverty in this country if we don’t improve the income of the farmers and fisherfolks. It’s time we start to paint a new picture of a rich farmer and fisherman.

But how do we do this? First we must show that there is money in agribusiness. The Agri Negosyo Summit attempted to focus the discussions on the various successful and profitable agri negosyo models, proven by the entreps in those crops or products. It could be new ways or better technology or seed varieties that can increase the harvest and income of a farmer. One example is the hybrid rice which can increase the yield of a farmer and can double/ triple his regular income. The challenge is to always improve your current agri-business model. Tennyson Chen, owner of Bounty Fresh, has a story which basically started with a small farm and he told the audience that he bought his equipment from RFM Corporation, a company I currently run as CEO. Today, he is one of the largest producers of dressed chickens and his poultry farms are all on tunnel ventilation. He also has forward linked by creating over one thousand Chooks-to-go roasted chicken stores.

After my speech, Secretary Kiko Pangilinan gave his message that agriculture is the key to food security since majority of people are dependent on it. He also shared that 60% of the labour force are from the agri sector and when these people earn, the economy will benefit. It is true that this sector will be a large player in the economy only when given the right support from the government and private sector.

Senator Cynthia Villar also empowered the audiences by sharing that agriculture will bring back the glory days of Philippine economy. She continues to inspire the audience when she said that she wanted to uplift the lives of the farmers and fishermen in the country through programs and advocacies. Sen. Villar is one of our partners in promoting entrepreneurship.

I was so inspired listening also to Dr. Jaime Alip of CARD MRI who was part of the keynote forum. A story that shows how passion, perseverance and a good business model can increase your chance to succeed. Dr. Alip is a Ramon Masaysay awardee, founder of the biggest micro finance institutions today, and a real enabler to the micro and small entrepreneurs. When he was starting, he was invited to Japan to speak to one of the funding agencies but he had no money to stay in a hotel so he stayed in the airport for three days. His Japanese friend, who owns a funding company, noticed that he was wearing the same suit every time they meet. But it wasn’t a hindrance, instead it showed his passion and determination and because of that, his friend granted him his first loan of 10,000 dollars.

We had four great forums that day, including a panel with all agri-enablers, and while the Summit was to end at five, it reached close to 7PM due to the number of people falling in line to ask questions. We also recognized 15 inspiring Agriprenuers that day. They too were all encouraged listening to the different stories of the panellists. One agriprenuer who travelled so far just to attend the event said that she was about to give up, but after listening to all the panellists, she said that she was re-energized and will now apply her new learnings. Another farmer shared his experience with Henry Lim Bon Liong’s hybrid rice. He shared how he was able to triple his harvest and income per hectare.

The reason why Go Negosyo is promoting agripreneurship is because millions of Filipinos have no other choice but to be in agriculture. Since they live near the sea and agricultural land, they might as well learn how to maximize these resources to start a negosyo. With the Go Negosyo bill now signed into law, agri-negosyo should be a major component here. It is time we start changing mindset of many and inject the idea that there is money in tilling the land- That farmers should start being proud of themselves and stop saying that, “Magsasaka lang ako.” If farmers in America, South America, Europe and even in some parts of Asia can drive beautiful cars and own nice homes, it can also happen here in our own country. If we don’t see our agripreneurs move up the ladder of success, the poverty in the Philippines will never go away.


We would like to thank the Annual Sponsors of the 1st AgriNegosyo Summit: PLDT SME Nation, Smart Communications, Meralco, RFM Corporation, Calata Corporation, Sta. Elena Development & Construction, Profood International Corp., Double Dragon Properties, WILCON Depot. DHL, BPI Family Ka-Negosyo, LBC, Kettle Korn and Condura.

First Agripreneur Summit

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

After the stormy start of the Franchising Asia 2014 last week and the PLDT SME Nation’s Future Talks last Friday, which were both empowering to many entreps who attended, we now turn to our Agri Negosyo Summit that will be held tomorrow. We are praying that it won’t be a rainy Friday.

In the past nine years, Go Negosyo has done over 60 big summits. Some were focused on a different sector and only cover some entrepreneurs from the agri sector, but it is only now that we have a much focused summit on agri business models.

What prompted us to focus on the agri sector is that we realized that the sector has tremendous potential waiting to be maximized.  About two thirds of the population live in agricultural areas. While only about 20 percent of GDP and 40 percent of total employment is accounted for by the sector, if we include the related agri-suppliers and agro-processing sector, its contribution could increase to 40 percent of GDP and 60 percent of total employment.  These numbers, therefore, tell us the huge multiplier effect and propensity for inclusive growth, benefitting more Filipinos.

As we encourage negosyos in the sector, we are not just after the basic production and traditional ways of doing things.  Rather, we wish to promote how we can generate greater productivity, higher production efficiencies, higher value-adding and processing that lead to higher margins and incomes.  Eventually, as we make more of the value-adding products, we increase the chance of differentiation, which eventually can lead to the power of branding and the power of higher valuations.

We now see good examples such as the dried processed mangoes exported by Justin Uy’s Profoods to many countries, or Henry Lim Bon Liong’s higher yield varieties for rice crops, and for the first time popularizing a branded commodity such as his Doña Maria brands of glutinous rice we see in the supermarket, or the fast-growing branded feeds products and farm implements initiated by Joseph Calata of the Calata group, or high value-added coconut products aside from virgin coconut oils and ingredients to many wellness products, even the “buko” juice that’s making it big in the export market. They are good examples of how we can leverage on higher value agri-products that we all know can make the entrepreneurs more successful.  By the way, many of these were featured in our recent Go Negosyo book on agripreneurs.

Tomorrow, July 25, we shall be presenting the entrepreneurs behind all these successful ventures. They will be sharing how they started and will give relevant advice on how these ventures can be more meaningful. Aside from the financial returns, the ability of these entrepreneurs to mobilize farmer groups and provide a regular market for their produce, have resulted in a more encompassing kind of growth at the grassroots. The forums we are presenting tomorrow will definitely inspire and spark ideas for those wanting to have the dream farm in the future. We can then look forward to a negosyo where we can be satisfied and happy while making a reasonable profit in the end, with a chance of improving as well the lives of other people.

The Agri-Negosyo Summit will be at the World Trade Center, Pasay City. This will definitely be an enriching summit and we hope many would take advantage of the opportunities that will surely flow from the discussions and networking with the right stakeholders during the summit.

We will be privileged to hear from the wisdom of esteemed agri-champions in government such as Sen. Cynthia Villar, Senate Committee Food and agriculture chair Sec. Kiko Pangilinan, whose also the presidential consultant on food security and agricultural modernization.

We will also have New Zealand Amb. Reuben Levermore who will share his country’s program in helping the agriculture sector. CARD-MRI founder and CEO Dr. Jaime Aristotle Alip, agripreneurs such Joseph Calata, Henry Lim Bon Liong, Senen Bacani, among others will be present for our keynote forum.

Enablers will also join us in our summit and will share how their respective institutions can help farmers and fisherfolks through trainings, seminars, loans and insurances. We also have panellists from the technical and academic groups.

We will also be awarding the Most Inspiring Agripre-neurs 2014. The awardees were selected on the basis of their inspiring journey, and successful business models, higher-value products and processes, while making a positive impact in their respective communities.

Let me cite the Go Negosyo Most Inspiring Agripre-neurs: Senen Bacani from La Frutera Inc., Tennyson Chen from Bounty Fresh Foods, Henry Lim Bon Liong from SL Agritech Corporation., Danilo Fausto of DVF Dairy Farm, Arsenio Barcelona of Harbest Agribusiness Corporation, Antonio and Jacqueline Alleje of Rizal Dairy Farm, Martin and Pilamar Ozaeta of Gemsun Marketing, Arestina Papillon of Pamora Farms, Jeffrey Lim of JSJ Goat Farm, Maximo Ricohermoso of MCPI Carrageenan and Neil Molina from JCDAF Dairy Farm.

Foundations and associations are also commended for their efforts to help their farmer members. We are awarding them as the Most Inspiring Agri-enablers 2014. Included in the list are GreenEarth Heritage Foundation led by Dr. Mylene Matti and Philippine Biochar Association led by Philip Camara.

We are looking forward to the summit. We are still inviting everyone to register to our website, or they can walk-in and register tomorrow at the venue.


We would like to thank the Annual Sponsors of the 1st AgriNegosyo Summit: PLDT SME Nation, Smart Communications, Meralco, RFM Corporation, Calata Corporation, Sta. Elena Development & Construction, Profood International Corp., Double Dragon Properties, WILCON Depot. DHL, BPI Family Ka-Negosyo, LBC, Kettle Korn and Condura.

[Partner Announcement] IDEA Workshop: Final Three-day Continuation

Sunday, July 20th, 2014



The Philippine S&T Development Foundation – Manila, Inc. (PhilDev S&T), in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), is implementing a three-year program called Innovative Development through Entrepreneurship Acceleration (IDEA). It aims to create a sustainable entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Philippines.

One of its flagship projects is the annual IDEA Global Entrepreneurship Workshop Series. PhilDev S&T conducts an annual series of hands on entrepreneurship workshop for science and engineering scholars and startup entrepreneurs that includes topics on understanding global market, identifying major market needs, productization of innovative research, business incubation, searching and working with venture capital, among others.

Last March 14-15, 2014, the first two of the annual five-part IDEA Global Entrepreneurship Workshop Series 2014 was conducted. Almost 200 startup entrepreneurs and engineering students and professors participated in the workshop, which had Silicon Valley entrepreneurs Ahmet Alpdemir and Eros Resmini as speakers. PhilDev Trustees and self-made Filipinos who made it big in Silicon Valley served as Teaching Assistants.

On July 25-27, 2014, we’re inviting you (start-up-entrepreneurs and engineering professors and students) to take part in the final three-day continuation of the IDEA Workshop at the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) in Makati City.

For GoNegosyo Facebook page subscribers, we’re allotting 100 slots on a first come, first served basis. Kindly email your confirmation at with the following information:

School (if student):
Year level and course (if student):
Email address:
Cellphone #:
Telephone #:

(Source of IDEA Workshop: Go Negosyo Official Facebook Page.)

You will receive the program after you email your confirmation of attendance.

Registration is absolutely FREE OF CHARGE and meals/snacks will be provided. However, we strongly recommend that you finish the three-day workshop as it also features supplemental lecture on Intellectual Property and Venture Capital Best Practices.

Our PhilDev Team is available to discuss with any clarifications or requirements you may have. Please feel free to contact Emil Tapnio, IDEA Program Director at 0917.897.3645 / or John Hermoso, IDEA Program Coordinator at 0917.792.4729 / 02.570.5282 /

We look forward to your keen participation. Thank you.


Executive Vice Chairman, PhilDev S&T

Our 2014 Most Inspiring Agripreneurs

Saturday, July 19th, 2014

In almost 9 years of Go Negosyo, we have been recognizing inspiring entrepreneurs who have contributed to the social development of our country and their community. Many of them were featured in our books in the hope of rousing our readers’ interest in business. The stories can encourage them to try and test their skills in venturing into the right kind of idea-based entrepreneurship. And that is what we are aiming to do: to transform our country into an entrepreneurial nation. And it is great to know that some of our past audiences and readers have been emailing us to let us know that they are now entrepreneurs.

Even in our summits, we are honoring entrepreneurs who have started small but because of their passion and determination to continuously innovate to suit their products and services to market demand, their businesses have grown. Some are even recognized not only in the local market but also abroad through exporting or international operations. These entrepreneurs are now giving back as they inspire and share practical knowledge and advice to others in our fora and seminars.

This month, we are geared up for our first Agri-Negosyo Summit will happen on July 25, 2014 from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm at the World Trade Center, Pasay City. Part of the program is to recognize these role models in agri-business, who have been unselfish in sharing their time and knowhow for the good of others.

We have selected 15 awardees of the Most Inspiring Agripreneurs and Agri-Enablers 2014. These awardees are chosen through deliberate consideration of their achievements and the quality of their entrep journey. They all have inspiring stories through which they have made a strong impact to the society and have helped their community by providing trainings and employment. We are not merely after the size of the agri business; instead we placed high regard to their innovativeness and creativity in turning raw products into higher-value goods, and to their integration of technology in their production processes. These awardees have different negosyo models that can likewise serve as examples for all aspiring agripreneurs.

Here are the awardees:

Senen Bacani

Senen Bacani leads his community towards change and development through the establishment of La Frutera Inc. His efforts to transform donated land into a productive plantation for Cavendish Bananas helped the province be recognized for high-quality fruits that are exported globally. La Frutera serves as an instrument to promote peace and equality in the region and has resulted in countless opportunities for prosperity.

Tennyson Chen

After facing many challenges in different business ventures, Tennyson Chen turned to breeding and growing livestock. His limited knowledge of the poultry business did not hinder his determination to succeed in agribusiness and has resulted in Bounty Fresh Food Inc. Now Bounty Fresh Food has been distributing thousands of dressed chickens all over the country and has partnered with their roast chicken chain, Chooks-To-Go.

Henry Lim Bon Liong

With his vision of a rice self-sufficient Philippines, Henry Lim Bon Liong developed SL Agritech Corporation. The creation of hybrid rice was caused by his long and detailed research into rice grains and has now resulted in progress and bountiful harvests. SL Agritech’s aggressiveness coupled with innovation and technology has led to the modernization of the rice industry.

Joseph Calata

The youngest business tycoon in the country started by bravely turning the family business into the Philippines’ largest distributor of agrochemicals, feeds, fertilizers and seed. He has proudly led the Calata Corporation to success, armed with his belief that the agriculture sector should and can be empowered. He recognizes the hard work of their farmers and has treated them as partners in success.

Danilo Fausto

Danilo Fausto has recognized that the Filipino farmers’ partners — the carabaos — don’t simply plow the fields but are also natural sources of nourishment for Filipinos.  Through DVF Dairy Farms, he has set a standard for high-quality milk, cheese and dairy products. His different mindset towards carabaos has helped farmers gain sustainable income and livelihood.

Arsenio Barcelona

Arsenio Barcelona transported and applied ideas and techniques he learned abroad in order to grow world-class fruit-bearing seeds in the country. He mastered the art of growing fruits, took the risk and persuaded farmers to utilize the seeds. His Harbes Agribusiness Corporation has helped increase farmers’ yield and improve production. He shares his knowledge through programs and seminars supported by the government and private institutions.

Jacqueline & Antonio Alleje

The pioneer of small-scale dairy production in the country, Rizal Dairy Farms continues to expand due to their strict quality controls and devotion to exceptional client service. Their advocacy on organic farming has inspired many to try and invest in the industry. Rizal Dairy Farms now is a top supplier of high-class dairy products to hotels and restaurants.

Martin & Pilamar Ozaeta

Martin and Pilamar hatched a poultry business despite challenging situations. Their partnership has provided them the strength and courage to continue with production. Gemsun Marketing has lent a hand to the town of San Jose, Batangas, making it known as the “Egg Basket of Luzon.” They are models of perseverance, determination and fortitude in achieving growth.

Ronald Costales

A humble man with big vision for agriculture, Ronald Costales leads in the integration of agriculture and tourism through his well-developed and eye-catching Costales Nature Farms. He proved that agriculture is not simply planting crops in vast lands but should also incorporate aesthetic value. Costales Nature Farm has provided its clients with educational and enjoyable trips.

Arestina Papillon

Arestina Papillon has a big heart and interest in chickens. Learning all farming methods from scratch, her passion, patience and high regard for quality has made Pamora Farms the pride of Abra province and an agri-tourism destination. But success is not theirs alone, as they share it with their community through their livelihood programs and seminars.

Jeffrey Lim

Jeffrey Lim’s capital in his JSJ Goat Farm is his passion and genuine love for animals, specifically goats. His consideration for their well-being has led to the top-quality facility that helps them produce delicious goats’ milk. JSJ Goat Farm is now one of the prime producers of goat products.

Maximo Ricohermoso

Maximo Ricohermoso pioneered seaweed cultivation in the country and transformed it into a high-value product, carrageenan. His company, MCPI Carrageenan Corporation, is committed to providing local fisher folk with an alternative but nature-friendly source of income. His leadership has led to awareness and appreciation of the world market for carrageenan.

GreenEarth Heritage Foundation

GreenEarth Heritage Foundation headed by Dr. Mylene Matti turned a land donation into a productive plantation of organic vegetables and herbs, moving its beneficiaries from a lifetime of deforestation into the organic agricultural way of life.  Their flagship product is MORINGA TEA, which is Certified-Organic by the US Dept. of Agriculture and Ecocert France. They are also Fair Trade Certified. GreenEarth believes that the transformation of their land is dependent on the loving hands of the farmers who cultivate and nurture it.   For them to succeed,  the holistic needs of their farmers must be addressed–

Philippine Biochar Association

Philippine Biochar Association played an important role in promoting the benefits of their product, biochar, towards environmental sustainability. This is part of their mission to save the planet and improve people’s lives by converting agricultural waste into a valuable product that helps boost farm soil fertility.

Neil Molina

A farm worker turned farm owner, Neil Molina is a source of inspiration for many Filipinos here and abroad. His dream for a better future for his family started with his cow investments. He shares his formula for success and gives advice to aspiring entrepreneurs through his mentorship programs.


We would like to thank the Annual Sponsors of the 1st AgriNegosyo Summit: PLDT SME Nation, Smart Communications, Meralco, RFM Corporation, Calata Corporation, Sta. Elena Development & Construction, Profood International Corp., Double Dragon Properties, WILCON Depot. DHL, BPI Family Ka-Negosyo, LBC, Kettle Korn and Condura.

#negosyotalks: READY FOR 2015: FUTURE PROOFING SME’s

Saturday, July 19th, 2014

READY FOR 2015: FUTURE PROOFING SME’s FOR THE ASEAN ECONOMIC COMMUNITY July 18, 2014 – 9:00am to 5:00pm | Solaire Resort and Casino Grand Ballroom | 1 ASEAN Avenue, Paranaque City

e-invite   OVERVIEW:

  • The goal of the AEC is to reduce trade barriers and make business across ASEAN easier and more cost-efficient.By AEC 2015, the gates to 10 additional economies will be fully opened to the Philippines, providing more opportunities for trade. Since ASEAN economies only account for less than a percent of global economic output, the 2015 AEC is geared to boost the Philippine”s rank to 7th in the world, which would then compete with countries like Korea, Italy, and Russia.

It will also simplify customs procedures, allowing free movement of goods and products from one economy to another. It will also create the capacity for certified exporters to self-certify the origin of their respective products and to enjoy preferential taxes under the ASEAN Free Trade Areas.

A Storm of SME Events

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

That was a strong typhoon that directly hit Metro Manila. As I was finalizing this column, the wind was banging our windows and door, and water seeping through the openings. I called Samie Lim of the Philippine Franchising Association (PFA) since we were supposed to open the Franchise Asia Philippines 2014 at the SMX Convention Center. His group has prepared so much for this biggest franchise event in Asia. But unfortunately, the typhoon was hitting directly our direction and so he said they had no choice but to cancel the program for the day. It was unfortunate since I know that they prepared a rich program that will empower the many stakeholders in the franchising industry.

By today, the Franchise Conference is expected open and we hope the impact of the storm wont hamper the participation of many interested stakeholders. The Conference will run through today, while the Expo with over 500 franchise brands and exhibits will open tomorrow until Sunday. These exhibits include local and international Franchise concepts, and those under incubation and emerging concepts that will also showcase business opportunities with low franchising investments.

Different resource speakers such as industry leaders, international and local franchisors, franchisees, business solution providers and established and aspiring entrepreneurs will share their insights and expertise towards franchising and related topics.

As we in Go Negosyo promote the building of an entrepreneurial culture in the last 9 years, encouraging new kinds of business ideas based on market opportunities combined with passion, the reality of course is that new business concepts are not easy to build and pure start-ups have bigger elements of risks. This is where our friends from the franchise industry fill-in a gap as they present tried and tested business concepts that aspiring entrepreneurs can choose from.


Your columnist, with PLDT Chair MVP, a big supporter of Go Negosyo who sees entrepreneurship as the solution to our country’s poverty problems

This week is a very busy week that manifest the kind of entrepreneurship revolution we are having nowadays. Aside from the Franchise Asia 2014, we are working with our key partner PLDT SME Nation in mounting tomorrow’s Future Talks: “Ready for 2015: Future-Proofing SMEs for the ASEAN Economic Community. this will be at Solaire Resort in Paranaque, from 9:00AM to 5:00PM.

We are a partner of this program along with the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) and the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) Philippines.

With our partners from PLDT Eric Alberto, Kat Luna Abelarde and Gabby Cui, we have programmed the sessions in the Future Talks to be practical and to give prescriptive knowledge on how to gear up for the integrating ASEAN Economic Community. The ASEAN integration is inevitable and all our sectors, especially the SMEs must be prepared. They have to have relevant and competitive products and services that can serve the market, and possibly link-up with other companies in the region, that in the end will provide them the continuous demand for their products.
What we expect from this integration is on how SMEs can form part of the ASEAN value chain, to be part of a system and not be against or adversely affected by it. ASEAN integration means we think not only as a Philippine product but an ASEAN product, in which we are a part of. Intra-ASEAN trade will grow and local enterprises will have to grow with it.

I will join the forum with the PLDT Head Manny Pangilinan or MVP, who by the way has celebrated his birthday recently. A belated Happy birthday to MVP. Our session will also be joined by Penshoppe’s Bernie Liu, who is also a PLDT SME Nation Grand Bossing last year, and also with marketing guru Dr. Ned Roberto. In the afternoon, there will be breakout sessions to tackle more specific sectors such as Manufacturing, Retail, and a Session of Women in business.

The programs are here, it is now up to us to maximize and learn from all these sessions to level-up our business and always move forward.

We are also a few days away from our Agri-Negosyo Summit which is taking place next week, July 25. This summit will be packed with keynote forums, and important learning sessions on how we can maximize growth and profitability in the agriculture sector. As we say, there is “money in agriculture”. We just have to know how to do it well. Our farmers have to think like entrepreneurs. The success stories of our various speakers and panelists will surely inspire and educate us how to make it big as well in this sector.

This will be next Friday at the World Trade Center and we expect over 3,000 participants from the agri sector as well as aspiring youth attendees from various agriculture colleges and universities.

We are glad to announce that Secretary Kiko Pangilinan, Presidential Consultant on Food Security and Agricultural Modernization has confirmed to address the crowd, together with a Keynote message to be given by our dynamic entrep advocate and now Chair of the Senate Agri Oversight Committee, Senator Cynthia Villar. We are fortunate as well to have the founder of the largest Micro Finance Institution in the country, and a Ramon Magsaysay awardee, Dr. Jaime Aristotle Alip of the CARD-MRI group. Other empowering sessions with various enablers and agri entrepreneurs shall share with us how we can have a fulfilling agribusiness.

Go Negosyo would like to congratulate Manila Broadcasting Center’s DZRH for their 75th anniversary. A pioneer in the industry and one of the most trusted stations in the country today, DZRH has supported as well the entrepreneurship advocacy by partnering with us to have a Go Negosyo sa Radyo program every Friday at 3:00PM. Thank you DZRH and more power to your group!

We would like to thank the Annual Sponsors of the 1st AgriNegosyo Summit: PLDT SME Nation, Smart Communications, Meralco, RFM Corporation, Calata Corporation, Sta. Elena Devlopment & Construction, WILCON Depot. DHL, BPI Family Ka-Negosyo, Kettle Korn and Condura and Kettle Korn.

[Go Negosyo Partner Announcement] Visit your Meralco SME Partners at the Franchise Asia Philippines Expo 2014!

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Visit your Meralco SME Partners at the Franchise Asia Philippines Expo 2014!



[Go Negosyo Endorsement] Investalk2014: Mid year outlook

Thursday, July 10th, 2014
Let’s talk Investments!
Investalk2014: Mid year outlook
 July 12Saturday | 08:00 AM – 05:00PM | Main Ballroom, Solaire Resort & Casino, an online finance community where people can discuss and learn from each other, will be grand launching its First Investor’s Conference called “Investalk 2014: A Mid Year Outlook”  at the  Main Ballroom of Solaire Resort and Casino where it will be inviting aspiring young investors into a one day condensed investment boot camp.
Investalk 2014 brings a number of the country’s most prominent finance personalities together in one enriching seminar. Speakers will be covering topics from the latest trends, news, updates and basics on investing both locally and abroad.
Featured speakers are: Tommy Tiu for Finance 101, Alvin Ang for the Economic Outlook, Michaelangelo Oyson of BPI for Philippine Equity Strategy, Richard Liboro for Guru Investing Strategies, Jay Peñaflor for Stock Market Psychology, Joe Ferreria for Implementing Personal Finance Plans, and Salve Duplito for Value Investing.
“Education is a form of investment. We invited the best educators into this conference so you can learn the different modes of investments. They will guide you in finding your optimal financial plan. It is important to invest early in life so that you can maximize your finances in preparing for the future” says Paul Glenson Lim, CEO of
Online registration is still open. Regular rate is P3280. For group discounts, please call 425-6488 or 781-0902.
To learn more about Investalk 2014, please visit the website at or email
Investalk poster UPDATED July7

From Farm Worker to Farm Owner

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

As we approach the July 25 Agri-Negosyo Summit, we get to encounter more institutions and hear more inspiring stories in the agri sector. They remind us how valuable the sector is. If we include the upstream agri inputs manufacturing, the downstream agro-processing, and trading, agriculture would account for 40% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product and 60% of employment. Notable also is the fact that majority lives in and around these agricultural fields, so the potential is so huge in improving the lives of many if we are able to advance this sector. This is what can bring about true inclusive growth in the country.

We featured in our earlier columns how certain private institutions/NGOs are able to mobilize the farmers such as the Kalasag farmers who supply some vegetable requirements of the biggest fast-food chain in the country. Our Selecta ice cream joint venture has also started to develop groups of farmers in Mindanao to supply the ube requirements for our ice cream.


Ambassador Reuben, Sir Joey and Neil

Another institution that has a program to help develop the country’s agricultural sector is the New Zealand government. New Zealand Amb. Reuben Levermore, one of the youngest if not the youngest ambassador assigned in the country has been passionate in talking about their country’s program to help the Philippines in the Agriculture field. Amb. Reuben mentioned to me the New Zealand-ASEAN Programme as their way to help in four critical areas in the region: Agricultural development; Disaster Relief and Preparedness; Education and Scholarship and Youth Leadership.

New Zealand has been known as a country rich in natural resources and a developed agriculture sector that accounts for about two-thirds of its exports. Beef and dairy cattle are important components of its agriculture sector, and their country is the 8th largest milk producer. Livestock is predominantly grass-fed and they are advanced in the milking processes. They are doing a lot of assistance in sharing their dairy production system. They fly-in experts, help supply breeds and give young entrepreneurs the needed training and exposure trips in their farms so that they can share how they do things to increase the yield and efficiencies of their milk production.

We learned from Amb Reuben their decision to partner with Go Negosyo in mounting our Agri Negosyo Summit and to participate in the forum discussions to allow them to share how they can help in this sector.

He also introduced us to an inspiring Filipino who became successful in the dairy cattle industry in the NZ. His name is Neil Molina, who humbly started as an entry-level farm-worker 8 years ago, but now owns 400 milking cows.

Neil Molina was born and raised in a farm in Catanduanes. His father is also into agribusiness, that’s why his interest on agriculture is natural for him. He was a Veterinary Medicine graduate of UP Los Banos. He started to get involved in a dairy farm here in the country when his father put up a 25-cow farm. But while helping in his father’s farm, he realized that there are more systems and technologies to learn. So he eventually applied to work in a farm in New Zealand.

He started as a dairy farm worker, the entry position in farms, where he did all-around work. He was the only employee of the farm since everything was mechanized. But after a year, he was asked to help manage a local farm in Batangas, to apply the systems he learned in NZ. He was able to change the cattle raising and milking system used in Batangas. But then again, faced with the reality of starting a new family life, he realized his farm salary was not enough. For the second time, he applied and returned to New Zealand and given his experience, he was hired quickly.

His new boss was more than an employer, but a mentor who taught him how he can move up in life, by starting to build up his savings and putting part of that in buying and accumulating milking cows that will be part of the farm where he worked. At first, he started to buy 1 year old cows and when he has collected 60 cows, he loaned from a bank in order to buy more. Today, Neil has about 400 cows.

In effect, he was taught the value of compounding interest, how his savings can accumulate and generate more income. Now he was not only working for money but he started to make his money work for him.

More recently, he was able to raise some capital to be a 30% partner in a bigger cattle farm. His former boss is now his partner.

It was so inspiring to listen to Neil’s story. Neil is no longer a farm worker but also a farm owner. He said that his background in veterinary medicine and farming has helped him a lot. He also said that nothing beats hard work and being hands-on, if we want to be successful. He said his passion in cattle raising and the positive mindset are what will keep you going when the going gets tough.

With Neil’s success, he is now the one giving back by sharing his stories and advice to various groups. He is in the country for a couple of days, supposed to have the much needed vacation, but he has been going around giving talks to share his experience and knowhow to others. He said he is committed to helping the Philippines develop the highly potential dairy cattle industry.

You can catch Neil talk about his journey and the negosyo opportunities around us in our forthcoming Agri Negosyo Summit at the World Trade Center on July 25.


We would like to thank the Annual Sponsors of the 1st AgriNegosyo Summit: PLDT SME Nation, Smart Communications, Meralco, RFM Corporation, Calata Corporation, Sta. Elena Development & Construction, Profood International Corp., Double Dragon Properties, WILCON Depot. DHL, BPI Family Ka-Negosyo, LBC, Kettle Korn and Condura.

The Agripreneurs and Agri-enablers

Saturday, July 5th, 2014

It is now the month of July and we are getting closer to our first Agri-Negosyo Summit which will be happening on July 25, 2014 in World Trade Center, Pasay City. We aim to promote the agricultural sector as filled with agri-business opportunities that also promote countryside and regional development.

We believe in the saying “there’s money in agriculture” and for many Filipinos, even those in the provinces, the opportunities and the resources are just around us, and we just have to open our eyes and sharpen our pencils on how we can start an interesting agri-negosyo model that may be close to our hearts. Even to those already in the sector, we are always wondering how we can further improve our business model to upgrade our income possibilities.

How can we move up in the value chain? This is probably the biggest challenge in the sector today. How can we make the farmers think like entrepreneurs? To go beyond farming or livestock production and move towards processing them or storing and packaging well the products? How to supply directly the major supermarkets and village stores?

Agripreneurs can level-up and produce higher value-added products that can command more stable and higher price levels as they may be in greater demand here and abroad. How we can process further or apply technology in the processes to lower costs and improve the product quality and presentation.

Many lives can improve through agripreneurship. Creativity and innovativeness will help them transform their raw products into high-value goods.

We invite everyone to join the Agri Negosyo summit to benefit from the whole program packed with plenary forums and seminars. We will be also having mentoring sessions with our guest entrepreneurs who are all well-experienced and knowledgeable in terms of agripreneurship. They will be able to answer questions and give advice to the participants. For more information, visit our website, or call 637 9229/637 9347. We hope to see you there.

Meanwhile, here are some of the inspiring agripreneurs and enablers who will be with us in the summit and who are ready to share their success through hard work and passion for agriculture.


We would like to thank the Annual Sponsors of the 1st AgriNegosyo Summit: PLDT SME Nation, Smart Communications, Meralco, RFM Corporation, Calata Corporation, Sta. Elena Development & Construction, Profood International Corp., Double Dragon Properties, WILCON Depot. DHL, BPI Family Ka-Negosyo, LBC, Kettle Korn and Condura.