Archive for April, 2017

Prosperity for All Summit

Thursday, April 20th, 2017
ASEAN Business Advisory Council hosts the first Prosperity for All Summit on April 28, 2017.

ASEAN Business Advisory Council hosts the first Prosperity for All Summit on April 28, 2017.

As you all know, Philippines is the host of ASEAN and it’s a great opportunity to celebrate ASEAN’s 50th Anniversary.

10 years ago, my father was the chairman of ASEAN. 10 years after, I am in the same position as Chairman of ASEAN Business Advisory Council. We have prepared a whole list of activities for this year’s chairmanship. The goal is to help more micro and small entrepreneurs. As you all know MSME development is close to my heart. For the past 12 years, we at Go Negosyo have been empowering and helping the micro and small entrepreneurs out of poverty. This year, ASEAN Business Advisory Council’s theme is Partnering for Change, Prosperity for All. Just like President Duterte’s goal of bringing inclusive growth in the country, we at ASEAN BAC supports the promotion of inclusive growth, not only in the Philippines but also across the ASEAN region.

The ASEAN Business Advisory Council is hosting the first Prosperity for All Summit on April 28, 2017 at the City of Dreams Manila. With the theme, “Driving growth through micro and small entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture”, this Summit aims to pursue genuine and inclusive growth and prosperity for the ASEAN peoples.  At the heart of this summit are the MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) where majority remain within the poverty line and whose means of livelihood and economic future remain uncertain despite developments in the establishment of the AEC (ASEAN Economic Community).

We all know that 99.6% of the businesses in the Philippines are micro, small, and medium enterprises. It is a must for all of us to create an enabling environment where enterprises will be empowered to improve their products and services and compete in not just in the ASEAN market but also globally.

I am glad to share with you that Malaysian Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak and Thailand Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha (Ret.) have both confirmed their attendance to the event. As we get closer to the date of the event, we are positive that we can get more leaders to attend.

We are glad to have Vice President Leni Robredo as well.

Session 1 discussion will feature former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Sen. Bam Aquino, Royal Group Vice President Mr. Rami Sharaf, and Inang Lupa Movement President Dr. William Dar. We have also invited Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco Jr. They will be discussing the topic: Enabling Environment to Achieve Prosperity for All.

International Container Terminal Services Chairman and President Mr. Enrique Razon, Sakae Holdings Ltd. Founder and Chairman and ASEAN BAC Singapore Member Mr. Douglas Foo, and Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industries President and ASEAN BAC Philippines Member Mr. George Barcelon will share their insights on the topic: Strengthening the One ASEAN Market to Access Global Markets. We have also invited Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez to join the discussion.

Funding, one of the major challenges for MSMEs, will be discussed by Mr. Alex Buenaventura of Landbank of the Philippines, Dr. Raymond Kwong of Silverlake Axis Group, Dr. Jaime Aristotle Alip of Center for Agriculture and Rural Development, and Mr. Jojo Flores of Plug and Play Technology Center.

Forum on innovation and technology will feature Department of Science and Tecnology Sec. Fortunato Dela Pena, YCH Group Executive Chairman and ASEAN BAC Singapore Chair Dr. Robert Yap, Lazada Philippines CEO Mr. Inanc Balci and ANZ Laos CEO Ms. Anna Green.

ASEAN BAC will also be launching the ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurs Network (AMEN), which aims to provide a private-public partnership platform where mentors and world class teaching modules for MSME empowerment can be developed and actively shared among ASEAN Member States (AMS). To discuss this call to action for all mentors and enablers, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and ASEAN BAC Chairman Joey Concepcion will be joined by Sen. Miguel Zubiri, Ms. Teresita Sy-Coson of SM Investments Corporation and ASEAN BAC Philippines, Mr. Manny V. Pangilinan of Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT), and Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Mohd Munir Bin Abdul Majid of Bank Muamalat Berhad and ASEAN BAC Malysia.

The fora will be moderated by well-known journalists such as Rico Hizon of BBC World News, Cathy Yang of ANC, former Business News Head of ANC Coco Alcuaz, Pia Hontiveros-Pagkalinawan of CNN Philippines, and Maria Ressa of Rappler.

We are happy to have the interest of many entrepreneurs, enablers, advocates, and other supporters. Some students are also interested to be part of the Summit. We thank partners and sponsors for their outpouring support. Through this summit, we aim to encourage entrepreneurs and enablers alike to help bring prosperity for all sectors in ASEAN region.

Insights on Start-ups, Financial Inclusion and MSMEs from Jojo Flores

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

jojo_flores
Jojo Flores is one of the top influencers in the Philippine start-up community. On April 28, 2017, he will be joining Dr. Aristotle Alip, Founder and Managing Director of CARD-MRI, Landbank President and CEO Alex Bueneventura, and Dr. Raymond Kwong from Malaysia, the CEO and Managing Director of Silverlake Axis Group of Companies, in a panel discussion about financial inclusion for micro, small and medium enterprises at the Prosperity for All Summit.

Jojo Flores has earned his clout in the local start-up community as Co-Founder of Launchgarage, a tech-focused start-up innovation hub and incubator that is home to the likes of Medifi, Tralulu and Taxumo. Internationally, he is also known as the Co-Founder and Vice President of Plug and Play Technology Center, the world’s largest start-up accelerator based in the mecca of innovation— Silicon Valley. In just a little over a decade since its inception, Plug and Play Technologies has raised in excess of $2.2 billion USD.

Flores’ extensive knowledge on start-ups, incubation and funding, is integral to facilitating the discussion of improving the funding mechanisms for start-ups in the region.

PFA Summit Panelists Per Session_03
“We currently face a market gap between startups and traditional funding institutions in the Philippines.  With the absence of credit history and collateral, startups encounter challenges in raising money or loans from banks.  Further, it is common that financial institutions don’t fully understand disruptive technologies.  Thus, banks need to educate themselves in exploiting this opportunity,” Flores shared.

Flores also observes that the main challenge for ASEAN regulations being set-up for start-up funding is “[alighting] taxes and [providing] incentives between the ASEAN nations.”  He cites Singapore as the hotspot for start-ups and new funds because of its friendlier terms, ease of doing business, and exits.

Looking forward, Flores sees a positive outlook for the future of financing when it comes to start-ups. “There are a number of opportunities, but one that is popular and trending now is in the area of block chain technology.  There are great potentials for better economics and security, not only for MSMEs but also for their target markets.”

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Prosperity for All Summit Web Image
The Prosperity for All Summit is organized by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, headed by its current Chair and the Philippine Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. The summit is a a one-day event focused on “Driving growth through micro and small entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture”, and will be held in the City of Dreams, Manila, Philippines on April 28, 2017.

The summit is expected to be a gathering of enablers from both the private and public sectors in view of MSME development. It will also be the initial meeting to lay out the blueprint for the ASEAN Business Advisory Council’s regional mentorship program, AMEN, and an avenue for leaders and heads of states to share their plans on achieving inclusive growth and prosperity not only in their own respective countries, but also in the region, collectively.

ASEAN BAC & ASEAN Japan Business Council Established ASEAN-Japan Innovation Network

Tuesday, April 18th, 2017
ASEAN Business Advisory Chairman Joey Concepcion and Vice Chairman of ASEAN Japan Business Council and Chairman of Sumitomo Corporation Kazuo Ohmori presented the signed Memorandum of Cooperation for the ASEAN Japan Innovation Network (AJIN). AJIN is a private sector led initiative for promoting innovation across sectors and industries including digital business platforms for MSMES and emerging industries. Witnessing the presentation are the ASEAN Economic Ministers led by the 2017 Chair, Department of Trade and Industry Sec. Ramon Lopez.

ASEAN Business Advisory Chairman Joey Concepcion and Vice Chairman of ASEAN Japan Business Council and Chairman of Sumitomo Corporation Kazuo Ohmori presented the signed Memorandum of Cooperation for the ASEAN Japan Innovation Network (AJIN). AJIN is a private sector led initiative for promoting innovation across sectors and industries including digital business platforms for MSMES and emerging industries. Witnessing the presentation are the ASEAN Economic Ministers led by the 2017 Chair, Department of Trade and Industry Sec. Ramon Lopez.

The ASEAN Business Advisory Council, led by its Chairman, Joey Concepcion III, and the ASEAN Business Club, represented by its Chair, Tan Sri Dr. Munir, joined forces with leading Japanese private business organizations in establishing the ASEAN-Japan Innovation Network (AJIN) in Tokyo last April 7, 2017. AJIN aims to promote innovation across key sectors in ASEAN especially in support of emerging new digital driven industries through collaboration and cooperation between ASEAN-Japan businesses.

This collaboration was highlighted by the signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation.  Mr. Concepcion representing ASEAN business and Mr. Kazuo Ohmori, Vice Chair of Asean Japan Business Council led the signing of the MoC.  Nine collaborating Japanese institutions co-signed the MoC namely: 1) ASEAN Japan Business Council, 2) The Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, 3) KEIDANREN (Japan Business Federation), 4) KEIZAI DOYUKAI (Japan Association of Corporate Executives), 5) Japan Foreign Trade Council, 6) Japan Association of New Economy, 7) Japan External Trade Organization, 8) Federation of Japanese Chambers of Commerce and Industry in ASEAN, and 9) Japan-ASEAN Innovation Support Network.

The signing of memorandum of cooperation happened last April 7, 2017 in Tokyo, Japan.

The signing of memorandum of cooperation happened last April 7, 2017 in Tokyo, Japan.

In the photo (L-R): Mr. Jun Hasegawa, Representative Director of Japan-ASEAN Innovation Support Network; Mr. Tsukasa Kawazu, Executive Managing Director of Japan Foreign Trade Council, Inc.; Dr. Kiyohiko Ito, Managing Director of KEIZAI DOYUKAI; Mr. Satoshi Mukuta, Senior Managing Director of KEIDANREN; Mr. Kazuo Ohmori, Vice Chairman of The Japan Section of the ASEAN-Japan Business Council; Mr. Joey Concepcion, Chairman of ASEAN Business Advisory Council; Tan Sri Dr. Mohd Munir, Chair of ASEAN BAC Malaysia; Dr. Yuri Sato, Executive Vice President of Japan External Trade Organization; and Mr. Takashi Ueno, Vice Chairman of The Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

In the photo (L-R): Mr. Jun Hasegawa, Representative Director of Japan-ASEAN Innovation Support Network; Mr. Tsukasa Kawazu, Executive Managing Director of Japan Foreign Trade Council, Inc.; Dr. Kiyohiko Ito, Managing Director of KEIZAI DOYUKAI; Mr. Satoshi Mukuta, Senior Managing Director of KEIDANREN; Mr. Kazuo Ohmori, Vice Chairman of The Japan Section of the ASEAN-Japan Business Council; Mr. Joey Concepcion, Chairman of ASEAN Business Advisory Council; Tan Sri Dr. Mohd Munir, Chair of ASEAN BAC Malaysia; Dr. Yuri Sato, Executive Vice President of Japan External Trade Organization; and Mr. Takashi Ueno, Vice Chairman of The Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The signed MoC was thereafter presented formally at the start of a full packed ASEAN-Japan Open Innovation Forum with the presence and strong support of all the ASEAN Economic Ministers led by the 2017 AEM Chair Ramon Lopez of the Philippines.

The AJIN initiative was a culmination of Japan’s private sector engagement and dialogue with new industries which started in Naypyidaw, Myanmar in 2014 (on Green Healthcare), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 2015 (on Venture Start up) and Bangkok, Thailand in 2016 (Service Sector).  For 2017, the AJIN serves as an ideal platform to bring about concrete programs in support of the Philippine government’s theme of an Innovation-driven economy and ASEAN BAC’s focus on MSME Empowerment and Inclusive Business towards Prosperity for All.

Are We Up For It?: Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid from Malaysia Weighs in on ASEAN Integration and MSME Development

Monday, April 17th, 2017
dr_munir

Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid of ASEAN BAC Malaysia.

On April 28, 2017, Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid will join ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) Chair Joey Concepcion, Philippine Senator Miguel Zubiri, ASEAN-BAC Member Tessie Sy-Coson, and Filipino Tycoon and Philanthropist Manuel V. Pangilinan as panelists for a session moderated by BBC World News anchor Rico Hizon entitled Call to Action: Initiating ASEAN Mentors for Entrepreneurs Network at the Prosperity for All Summit in the City of Dreams, Manila.

A well-recognized figure in ASEAN discourse, Dr. Majid was the previous Chair of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, Malaysia.

The ASEAN Mentors for Entrepreneurs Network (AMEN) is a private-public partnership platform where mentors and world class teaching modules for micro, small and medium enterprise empowerment can be developed and actively shared among ASEAN Member States (AMS).

“AMEN is an excellent initiative by Go Negosyo and the Philippines,” Dr. Majid says, “The concentrated effort and focus will help MSMEs reach out and expand their businesses. There is no free lunch of course, but the guidance afforded them can provide linkages if there is a business fit. The mentor with his suite of activities may even find MSMEs that can supply, produce, market and sell goods and services for his business empire.”

Indeed, AMEN will open up a world of opportunities for entrepreneurs all over the region. “Information is king. First, to market is not just an expression. We must be aware that what ASEAN is into is free market and competition. This is the ethic of the ASEAN Economic Community,” Dr. Majid shares. “What initiatives like the mentorship program and the ASEAN MSME master plan are trying to do is to create as level a playing field as possible. But there is no avoiding there will be winners and losers. Are we up for it?

This raises the query of how exactly can MSMEs be further capacitated asides from mentorship and skills training. “Access to finance is key,” Dr. Majid stresses. “New forms of availability beyond the banks through e-finance platforms domestic and cross-border should be encouraged if ASEAN is serious about helping MSMEs.” Dr. Majid depicts a pragmatic picture of why finance is a primary focus area for the ASEAN. “[Financial services’] availability at reasonable rates would provide a solution to many other areas in which MSMEs are weak: good management and account-keeping; better use of technology in internal systems, production and sales; improving the standard of English, which is ASEAN’s business language (although there should be assistance through translations of more important information) – many of the things the mentorship program is designed to achieve.”

Prosperity for All Summit Web Image
The Prosperity for All Summit is organized by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, headed by its current Chair and the Philippine Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. The summit is a one-day event focused on “Driving growth through micro and small entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture”, and will be held in the City of Dreams, Manila, Philippines on April 28, 2017.

To register, accomplish the online form at www.tinyurl.com/AseanProsperityforAll-Public. For additional information on the Prosperity for All Summit, please contact: (+632) 6315001, email info@asean-bac.org, or visit www.gonegosyo.net.

Going Global: ASEAN and the Future of MSMEs

Saturday, April 8th, 2017

Radio Synthesis 07 Dr
Last March 29, 2017, Go Negosyo Radyo hosts Sen. Bam Aquino & DJ Cheska San Diego-Bobadilla were joined by ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN BAC) Executive Director Gil Gonzales and ASEAN Business Advisory Council Malaysia member and former Chair, Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid for the weekly episode of Go Negosyo sa Radyo on DZRH.

The prominent guests who are experts in the topic of business and the ASEAN, took upon the task of explaining the ASEAN, the ASEAN Economic Community, and integration to our listeners. Oftentimes, the nuanced and complex structure of the ASEAN can leave many Filipinos confused and consequently, misinformed of what the ASEAN and the forthcoming economic interdependence implies.

Many Filipino negosyantes wonder — how can foreign entrants into the Filipino market be beneficial for a small business like mine? Isn’t it anti-Filipino to make it harder for us micro and small enterprises to compete globally?

In the discussion between our hosts and guests, Executive Director Gonzales and Dr. Munir Majid shared insights to help Filipinos understand the real benefits and challenges presented by the changes brought about by ASEAN. Addressing the fears of the Filipinos, Dr. Munir Majid said “Why are you afraid? It’s not just ASEAN countries, but the whole integrated movement is worldwide. It’s happening everywhere — so we really must compete. Don’t be afraid—if you’re afraid you will lose. Take advantage of the financial advances and technologies that will be made more available.”

Gonzales also weighed in on the matter, saying “The fear is there because there is a lack of awareness of knowledge. But we have the support of the government and the private sector. The conversation about ASEAN needs to be alive and widespread, but we also have to progress; we have to move the conversation to how we can take advantage of the changing and opening market.”

“We have to be tough, we have to wish to be competitive! But there’s also lots of support especially from DTI and other government agencies,” Gonzalez added.

When asked how businesses can start to prepare for the changes, Gonzales said “First things first, you have to ask: who are my competitors? Go to PCCI and look for the association that corresponds to your business. Then look at who else in ASEAN does the same thing as you. The thinking should be partnerships rather than fighting for the market. We have to partner to raise our quality, standards, and production so we can reach global standards and penetrate the global market.”

Dr. Majid added “The various standards that different countries have could become a problem. To address this, one initiative is that we should have common standards. Agri-food business is something we’re concentrating on. For example, we’re removing certain tariff barriers. You really have to look at other countries and look at your competition. Assess how you can be efficient in your area because only then can you expand.”

In terms of the different institutions the MSMEs can approach for help, Dr. Majid said “Go Negosyo’s mentorship program is something great that [The Philippines] has because you get to sell and provide for an existing supply-chain. Another, is GAX a loan platform form Malaysia. Trade associations and your local chambers of commerce are also good starting points to look for assistance and to map out businesses similar to yours. Everybody is involved in the ASEAN Economic Agenda.”

Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid

Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid

In photo (L-R): ASEAN BAC Malaysia Member Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid, DJ Cheska San Diego-Bobadilla, ASEAN BAC Executive Director Gil Gonzales and Sen. Bam Aquino.

In photo (L-R): ASEAN BAC Malaysia Member Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Munir Majid, DJ Cheska San Diego-Bobadilla, ASEAN BAC Executive Director Gil Gonzales and Sen. Bam Aquino.

So, what’s next for the ASEAN?
Dr. Majid posits that the “downside when your market is big, is that you sometimes want to get out. Philippines is quite behind in terms of tourism compared to other ASEAN countries and that’s something we can focus on.” Also, important events focused on business are the ASEAN Business and Investments Summit and the upcoming MSME Summit entitled Prosperity for All (read: ASEAN Summit on MSME Development in Manila).

Other future initiatives that were discussed was the ASEAN Mentors for Entrepreneurs Network (AMEN), which takes inspiration from the Kapatid Mentor Me Program and its capacity to link up the supply chains of the big and small.

Dr. Majid and Gonzales shared that the ASEAN, at its current rate of growth, could be the 4th biggest economy in the world by 2030.

The final question addressed by the ASEAN-BAC Executive Director was the supposed isolation of the Philippines. Gonzales agreed that the PH is a little isolated “It’s a little like Britain in the EU. But the distance is now being reduced and the markets are being brought closer together. So the distance will become less and less significant. That’s why there is a growing need for architects and engineers in order to boost the infrastructure development of the region.”

Dr. Majid, who was the previous ASEAN-BAC Chair, was asked what advise he had for current ASEAN-BAC Chair Joey Concepcion. “Joey is an old hand, he’s a great guy and he’s pursuing the MSME and shared prosperity targets. He has the support of Gil who’s a great management man. We have a lot of support from this council. If I can say one thing: Go Get! Make it Happen!

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Prosperity for All Summit Web Image
The Prosperity for All Summit is organized by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, headed by its current Chair and the Philippine Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. The summit is a one-day event focused on
Driving growth through micro and small entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture”, and will be held in the City of Dreams, Manila, Philippines on April 28, 2017.

To register, accomplish the online form at www.tinyurl.com/AseanProsperityforAll-Public. For additional information on the Prosperity for All Summit, please contact: (+632) 6315001 or  info@asean-bac.org, or visit www.gonegosyo.net. 

Kapatid Agri Mentor Me

Thursday, April 6th, 2017
Go Negosyo and Department of Agriculture sealed their partnership for the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program (KAMMP) (In photo L-R Ginggay Hontiveros, Go Negosyo Adviser on Agripreneurship, Dr. William Dar, Go Negosyo Adviser, Presidential Adviser Joey Concepcion, Sec. Manny Pinol, Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, DA Undersecretary for Marketing, and Luz Tapusok, Director of Agricultural Training Institute).

Go Negosyo and Department of Agriculture sealed their partnership for the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program (KAMMP) (In photo L-R Ginggay Hontiveros, Go Negosyo Adviser on Agripreneurship, Dr. William Dar, Go Negosyo Adviser, Presidential Adviser Joey Concepcion, Sec. Manny Pinol, Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, DA Undersecretary for Marketing, and Luz Tapusok, Director of Agricultural Training Institute).

In our mission to mentor all entrepreneurs in different sectors, we are forging partnerships with different institutions and government offices to reach even the low-lying communities of the country. Agriculture is one of the sectors I personally want to equip and empower. Why? Because as an agricultural country, I know that we have the resources and the market for crops and agri products. We are also blessed with farmers and fishermen who work hard to provide us with the food we see in markets.

This is why we need to mentor them. We need them to improve their practices, teach them techniques, and introduce them to agricultural technologies. And hopefully, their sons and daughters prepared with an enterprising mindset will become the next successful agripreneurs.

Last Monday, Go Negosyo sealed its partnership with the Department of Agriculture led by Sec. Manny Piñol. This has been in the works since we launched the Kapatid, Angat Lahat program in August 2016. Under this partnership, we are launching the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program (KAMMP) which applies the same model of Kapatid Mentor Me, a 12-week coaching session for micro and small entrepreneurs.

KAMMP wishes to take the same proven and enabling formula as the KMME and apply it to the context of Agripreneurs. The DA is mandated to promote agricultural development by providing the policy framework, public investments, and support services needed for domestic and export-oriented business enterprises. Thus, KAMMP was developed with Go Negosyo as a coaching program for Agriculture as a complement to the DA’s initiatives to help sustain and scale up Agri-business in the country.

The program’s modules will be taught by Agri-business Industry practitioners with an extensive knowledge in their field. The objectives of the program are to equip Agripreneurs and farmers with the proper production techniques, mindset and values, practical knowledge and strategies, and consultation services to foster successful and sustainable agri-enterprises. Mentees for the program will be selected from farmers’ cooperatives by the respective Regional Directors of the DA.

During the signing ceremony, we were joined by Merly Cruz, Adviser for MSME Development, and Ginggay Hontiveros, Adviser for Agripreneurship. Also present were Go Negosyo Agri Mentors led by Dr. William Dar, Henry Lim Bon Liong, Toto Barcelona, Pamela Chan, Flor Tarriela, Mike Caballes, Cherrie Atilano, Vix Madlangbayan, Sandy Montano, Babie Atanacio, Mat Maderazo and Bobby Amores.  The Department of Agriculture is represented by Secretary Manny Piñol, together with Undersecretary Ariel Cayanan of Operations and Undersecretary Berna Romulo Puyat of Marketing. Also present to witness the signing is the Director for ATI Ms. Luz Tapusok and members of the ATI, AFID and AMAS teams. ATI is integral to the implementation of the KAMMP program in all regions of the country.

The MOU Signing was followed with a discussion by the two parties for several initiatives of agri development in the countryside, as well as the proposed ASEAN Agri Summit slated for October 2017.

We are excited to share this good news to our farmers! With this program, we wish for a stronger agri sector in the coming years equipped not only with the positive entrepreneurial mindset but also with agricultural knowledge and equipment.

Prior to this official partnership, we have been collaborating with Sec. Piñol and his team for some projects including the linkage of onion farmers to big brothers. Last February, farmers from Bongabon Nueva Ecija met with some representatives of the big companies to share their plights and offer their produce to them. Like big brothers, companies were quick to extend their support to Sec. Piñol and the farmers. SM Group and Robinsons among others are continuously offering the local onions in their supermarkets because of this coordination. We are working on bringing more vegetables and fruits to the nearest groceries, and cutting the unnecessary processes in the value chain.

Apart from this, our Sulu Project is mainly because of Sec. Piño. He was the one who tapped us to make the programs in Sulu a reality. When President Duterte asked Sec. Piñol to create development programs in Sulu, Sec. Piñol asked me to help thus the birth of the Sulu Project. With the outpouring support of the big brothers, we already had groundbreaking ceremonies last month to start the construction of classrooms and houses in different areas of the province.

With the full support now of DA, we hope to bring more livelihood and micro and small entrepreneurship development programs to our agri players. There are a lot of successful entrepreneurs who found greener pastures in agriculture and we want to create more successful agripreneurs. Together, DA and Go Negosyo will bring prosperity to our agriculture community!

Go Negosyo and Department of Agriculture Form the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017
Go Negosyo and Department of Agriculture sealed their partnership for the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program (KAMMP). In photo (L-R): Ginggay Hontiveros, Go Negosyo Adviser on Agripreneurship, Dr. William Dar, Go Negosyo Adviser, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo Founder Joey Concepcion, Department of Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol, Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, DA Undersecretary for Marketing, and Luz Tapusok, Director of Agricultural Training Institute.

Go Negosyo and Department of Agriculture sealed their partnership for the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program (KAMMP). In photo (L-R): Ginggay Hontiveros, Go Negosyo Adviser on Agripreneurship, Dr. William Dar, Go Negosyo Adviser, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo Founder Joey Concepcion, Department of Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol, Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, DA Undersecretary for Marketing, and Luz Tapusok, Director of Agricultural Training Institute.

April 3, 2017–The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Signing between the Department of Agriculture (DA) and Go Negosyo at the Casa Roces, Malacañan, Manila City officiates the partnership between the two institutions in launching the Kapatid Agri Mentor Me Program (KAMMP).

Last 2016, Go Negosyo in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry, rolled-out the Kapatid Mentor ME Program (KMME) which helps micro and small business scale up thru weekly coaching sessions done by their mentors. Mentors are business owners or practitioners across different functional areas of entrepreneurship. The sessions are held in DTI’s Negosyo Centers across the country and are stretched over the course of 12 weeks.

KAMMP in this regard, wishes to take the same proven and enabling formula as the KMME and apply it to the context of Agripreneurs. The DA is mandated to promote agricultural development by providing the policy framework, public investments, and support services needed for domestic and export-oriented business enterprises. Thus, KAMMP was developed with Go Negosyo as a coaching program for Agriculture as a complement to the DA’s initiatives to help sustain and scale up Agri-business in the country.

The program’s modules will be taught by Agri-business Industry practitioners with an extensive knowledge in their field. The objectives of the program are to equip Agri-preneurs with the proper production techniques, mindset and values, practical knowledge and strategies, and consultation services to foster successful and sustainable agri-enterprises. Mentees for the program will be selected from farmers groups by the respective Regional Directors of the DA.

Go Negosyo is represented by its Founder, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion, together with Merly Cruz, Adviser for MSME Development, and Ginggay Hontiveros, Adviser for Agripreneurship. Also present were Go Negosyo Agri Mentors led by Dr. William Dar, Henry Lim Bon Liong, Toto Barcelona, Pamela Chan, Flor Tarriela, Mike Caballes, Cherrie Atilano, Vix Madlangbayan, Sandy Montano, Babie Atanacio, Mat Maderazo and Bobby Amores.  The Department of Agriculture is represented by Secretary Manny Pinol, together with Undersecretary Ariel Cayanan of Operations and Undersecretary Berna Romulo Puyat of Marketing. Also present to witness the signing is the Director for ATI Ms. Luz Tapusok and members of the ATI,

AFID and AMAS teams. ATI is integral to the implementation of the KAMMP program in all regions of the country.

The MOU Singning was followed with a discussion by the two parties for several initiatives of agri development in the countryside, as well as the proposed ASEAN Agri Summit slated for October 2017.

A Celebration for Women as Catalysts for Change

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

filipina photo 1
March 30, 2017—Women from across the Philippines flocked the Malacañan palace, in a display of support for those who were recognized for their capacity to be catalyst for change and progress in the Go Negosyo Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs Awards 2017. The event was aligned with the first national celebration of Women’s Month under President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s administration. The President, as the guest of honor that night, gave a short message on women and their role in the much needed change we seek in our country.

“More Filipinas are becoming leaders of their respective industries, contributing significantly to their institutions and making remarkable major strides that uplift the living conditions of their families and communities.”

The President then proceeded to highlight women’s role in nation building—underscoring the overarching theme of women’s month: We Make Change Work for Women.

Other notable attendees were Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, SM Investment Corporation Vice Chairman and ASEAN Business Advisory Council Member Tessie Sy-Coson and Department of Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez who gave a a brief address about women and their instrumental role in change. “Women are an inspiring breed because they are agents of change and progress. 80% of enterprises are started by women entrepreneurs. They are resourceful, very entrepreneurial and they find ways to augment the income of their families. We have several role models of entrepreneurship that provide for us a revolution of mindset—the change they inspire is something to look up to and aspire towards,” DTI Sec. Lopez said.

In the photo (L-R): President Rodrigo Duterte; Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo Founder Joey Concepcion; and DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez.

In the photo (L-R): President Rodrigo Duterte; Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo Founder Joey Concepcion; and DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez.

Of course, in attendance and the head of the event was Founder of Go Negosyo and Presidential Adviser for Entrepeneurship, Joey Concepcion.

“Filipinos are not destined for poverty. We really have to put our work, heart and passion to become successful. The awards [the women entrepreneurs] will be receiving will inspire youth entrepreneurs because we need more of them. And they will be drawing inspiration from all of you,” Concepcion said. “One in a million [women entrepreneurs] will become one of the Legacy Awardees in the future. Hopefully, through these really inspiring, hardworking women, we all will learn never to give up,”

For many years, Joey Concepcion has been at the forefront of honoring women entrepreneurs across the nation. In fact, since its inception in 2005, Go Negosyo has already awarded over 200 outstanding women entrepreneurs for serving as inspirations in their respective fields. The Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs Awards highlights the strength and perseverance of women entrepreneurs in the ever developing landscape of entrepreneurship in our country. The awarding ceremony celebrated the women who have greatly contributed and excelled in various ways in their respective fields. The new laudable batch of awardees were selected from an impressive pool of nominees and classified into seven categories: Youth, Inclusive Business, Women MSME Development Enabler, Micro, Small-Medium, Large, and Legacy.

Youth Awardee Arizza Nocum of KRIS Library & Good Karma Shirts gave a heartwarming message on how the women present and honored that night will continue to be sources of inspiration for herself and other as a positive indication of the bright future of women in entrepreneurship. She considers those awarded alongside her as “moms and titas” and promised before the audience that she aspire to be a source of inspiration to others as well.

Youth Entrepreneur Awardee Arizza Ann Nocum delivers a response speech in behalf of the 2017 Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs.

Youth Entrepreneur Awardee Arizza Ann Nocum delivers a response speech in behalf of the 2017 Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs.

Here are the list of awardees for this year’s Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs:

YOUTH
* Arizza Nocum, KRIS Library & Good Karma Shirts

INCLUSIVE BUSINESS
* Felicitas Pantoja, Coffee for Peace
* Rachel de Villa, Cropital

MICRO-SMALL
* Honie Krizia Navor, HK Stone Craft Trading
* Evelyn Daytao. Daytao Native Cake
* Pamela Henares. BuroBuro Springs Vermi Farm
* Imelda Dagus, Dennis Coffee Garden
* Cherrie Atilano, AGREA
* Maria Lydia Lomibao, J. Emmanuel Pastries
* Arlene Mabute, Mabute Lumpia Wrapper & Cheese Stick Maker
* Ester Vitto, Bahag Footwear

MEDIUM-LARGE
* Ana de Ocampo, Wildflour Café & Bakery
* Mary Ann Montemayor, Villa Margarita Hotel & Catering
* Sheree Gotuaco, Omnimoda International
* Anne Gonzalez, Terry S.A.
* Evelyn Palomo, Great Image
* Gina Lorenzana, Unilever Philippines
* Rebecca Mills, Chalre Associates
* Felicia Atienza, Chinese International School Manila

WOMEN MSME DEVELOPMENT ENABLERS
* Pacita Juan, ECHOstore
* Doris Ho, Magsaysay Maritime Corporation
* Cynthia Villar, Senate of the Philippines

LEGACY
* Corazon Ong, CDO Foodsphere, Inc.
* Socorro Ramos, National Bookstore
* Rosalind Wee, W Group of Companies
* Mercedes Gotianun, Filinvest Development Corp.

Senator Bam Aquino’s Personal Insights on MSME Development

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017
Photo courtesy of Sen. Bam Aquino's official Facebook Page.

Photo courtesy of Sen. Bam Aquino’s official Facebook Page.

Senator Bam Aquino, as the youngest Senator currently seated in the Philippine senate, is a staunch advocate of capacitating and empowering micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the country. He has authored the Go Negosyo Act in the Philippines wherein the establishment of negosyo centers (one-stop shops for an entrepreneur’s varying needs) is mandated in all provinces, cities, and municipalities. Furthermore, Senator Bam Aquino has championed other initiatives to fast-track and aid the development of MSMEs such as lowering their tax rates and consolidating MSME assistance programs.

On April 28, Sen. Aquino will be joining four other panelists in a session moderated by Cathy Yang entitled Creating an Enabling Environment in Achieving Prosperity For All. This session aims to present the current environment and ecosystem for micro, small and medium entrepreneurs from the perspective of the enablers both from the private and public sectors respectively. It also aims to present the current programs of the speakers and how these affect and shape a more enabling business environment.

In a short interview, Sen. Aquino gave his brief insights on the upcoming summit and MSME development.

Q:  In your perspective, what constitutes as an “enabling environment” for the micro, small, and medium entrepreneurs?

BA: An enabling business environment is one that minimizes barriers to success and encourages more Filipinos to build a sustainable business.

In my work with sari-sari store owners as a social entrepreneur, I found that there are 3 key areas of support that every entrepreneur needs to succeed – the 3Ms. These are Money, Market and Mentorship.

For Money, entrepreneurs – from micro to small and medium – need access to financing with reasonable interest rates to meet their capital requirements.

Access to markets, the second M, is another critical element in building a sustainable business. An environment where it easy to enter markets and where market linkage is strong is an environment that enables the growth of MSMEs.

The third M, Mentorship, refers to the training and strengthening of entrepreneurial skills. More importantly, mentorship provides moral and technical support for our MSMEs. Any entrepreneur will tell you that growing a business is not easy. Having mentors and a support group of fellow entrepreneurs to guide and push you can bring you closer to success.

To create an enabling environment, we need to ensure that MSMEs have easy access to these 3Ms.

But it’s also important to note that the government has a role to play, not just in empowering MSMEs with the 3Ms but also in ensuring that government regulations and processes do not hinder the growth of startups and MSMEs.

Government should, for example, strive to minimize red tape and simplify taxation.

Q: Can you give us an example of one of your initiatives/programs that directly contributes to an enabling environment for MSMEs?

BA: My first 3 years as a senator was dedicated to the development of the MSME sector. In fact, 6 out of 17 laws that we passed are in support of MSMEs. The very first law that our office passed, with the help of Go Negosyo, was the Go Negosyo Act.This law mandates that every municipality in the Philippines will have a Negosyo Center where Pinoy entrepreneurs can receive support from qualified business counselors – from trainings in basic accounting, to product design, market linkages, and access to financing. We envisioned entrepreneur hubs where every Filipino can gain access to the 3Ms and can be assured of success in their business.

To date, there are 470 Negosyo Centers up and running that are a joint effort between local government units and the DTI. These Negosyo Centers have serviced 750,000 Filipinos and will continue to grow and improve the quality of their service.

We also have the Microfinance NGOs Act and the Credit Surety Fund Cooperative Act to enable better access to financing for micro to small enterprises. There is the Youth Entrepreneurship Act that mandates entrepreneurship and financial literacy training in our schools so young Filipinos have the basic knowledge to start a business.

Lastly, the Philippine Competition Act and the Foreign Ships Co-Loading Act are 2 landmark legislations that help MSMEs become more competitive in the local market.

Q: What aspect/s of the Prosperity for All Summit are you most looking forward to?

BA: I’m looking forward to learning about new ways to empower Pinoy MSMEs to scale-up and penetrate the ASEAN market. I’m also excited to hear about the new opportunities for MSMEs in the region.

It will be interesting to learn from our neighbors about innovations and best practices in the private sector, in legislation, and in government. On the other hand, we are happy to share the positive experience we’ve had working hand-in-hand with MSMEs here in the Philippines.

I’m hopeful that through this summit, we can form stronger partnerships, learn together, and grow together as a united ASEAN.

Prosperity for All Summit Web Image
The Prosperity for All Summit is organized by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, headed by its current Chair and the Philippine Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. The summit is a a one-day event focused on “Driving growth through micro and small entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture”, and will be held in the City of Dreams, Manila, Philippines on April 28, 2017.

To register, accomplish the online form at www.tinyurl.com/AseanProsperityforAll-Public. For additional information on the Prosperity for All Summit, please contact: (+632) 6315001 or  info@asean-bac.org, or visit www.gonegosyo.net.