Archive for the ‘ABA 2017’ Category

ABA Awardees Share Valuable Takeaways as Scholars to AGLP

Monday, July 17th, 2017

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The ASEAN Global Leadership Program (AGLP) 2017, held last May 8 to 12, is designed for senior management of Southeast Asian countries as a crash course on relevant insights on Globalization, Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Leadership. With the theme “Shaping our Future as Leaders of Innovation” 38 senior executives, three of whom were scholars to the program, took part in lectures, exposure trips, and discussions hosted by SRW&Co. and UC Berkeley Haas School of Business. Founder & Managing Director of City Mart Win Win Tint (Myanmar); Director of VG Offshore International Containers Anusia Ramasamy (Malaysia); and Founder & CEO of Zeenoh, Inc. JD Abenaza (Philippines), were the three awardees of the scholarships as recent winners of the 2016 ASEAN Business Awards. The three scholars participated in a moderated panel discussion and shared their experiences and insights as innovators and entrepreneurs in their respective countries.

Abenaza shared that as the only Filipino in the program, he was able to appreciate the business diversity across the ASEAN region. “It gives me a lot of insights on how to think globally and thrive at the ASEAN level.”

Abenaza also elaborated on the highlights of the program— “We were fortunate to have a distinguished faculty from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business led us deep into innovation’s key drivers namely, experimentation, global and local trends, customer centric product and service design, collaboration, and culture.” He reflected that the program allowed him to have an overview on the new trends and technology happening in the world. “It gives me more ideas. When I go back home I can enable all the businesses that I started in terms of research and development. I have a clearer idea of the innovative technologies that I will pursue.”

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Ramasamy on the other hand felt that the program came at the right time for her and her organization. “Why I say it came at the right time is because the industry I am in is in a crisis right now.” Ramasamy shared that at a lecture in the program, one of the directors told them not to wait to do things out of desperation, but to do them out of aspiration. “At the moment in my organization, we are doing things out of desperation — we wanna do something new, do something great. That lesson was an eye-opener for me because it made me look and think ‘is this the right thing to do for our organization? Are we putting our people into the right direction?’”

Tint was enthusiastic about how the program was located in Silicon Valley, which she sees as the center of innovation in the world. “Seeing how fast innovations are happening and trends are changing — the knowledge and insights have given me a good sense of urgency that I will be bringing home with me. This is an unforgettable week for us.”

Overall, Abeneza says that he highly recommends the program as it will help one to become a world class and competitive business leader. Ramasamy also encourages others to join in. “Every individual who is running an organization—whether the CEO or an engineer—should be sent to such programs to open their minds, to look at a different perspective, and to look at what’s happening in the world.” Tint emphasized how value-adding the program is to business leaders. “We really see what’s happening out here in Silicon Valley and how it’s going to impact us in the near future. Senior leadership in companies need to know about these things to bring the needed change for their company.”


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Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017.  For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit  www.aba2017.com

Henry Lim Bon Liong’s Hybrid Rice Venture Won Him an ASEAN Business Award

Friday, July 14th, 2017

When I first ventured into the rice business, I did not even know how much a kilo of rice costs. Now SL Agritech is the largest in the industry.” Henry Lim Bon Liong

Henry Lim Bon Liong is a venerated business icon whose success came from his own hard work and relentless entrepreneurial spirit. The head of the Sterling Group of companies, Lim Bon Liong’s key leadership and decision-making has led the group to secure its place as a market leader in their diversified ventures. Most recently, the group’s venture into agriculture has won the praise of local and international institutions, with the Manila Standard even hailing him as the “Bill Gates of hybrid rice”.

Henry Lim Bon Liong won the ASEAN Priority Sector Excellence Awards for Agriculture in 2015 for the performance of his company SL Agritech.

Henry Lim Bon Liong won the ASEAN Priority Sector Excellence Awards for Agriculture in 2015 for the performance of his company SL Agritech.

Lim Bon Liong was featured in Go Negosyo’s 10th year anniversary publication of Joey Concepcion’s 50 Inspiring Entrepreneurial Stories. In it, Henry Lim Bon Liong his untimely assumption of his father’s role at the helm of the company due to an unfortunate accident. At a young age, Lim Bon Liong was able to lead the once humble book store and photo business, into a thriving paper and notebooks manufacturer.

Lim Bon Liong shared that the company was able to stay ahead of their competition due to the quality and originality of their designs. Went most of their competitors focused on what was trendy, their company decided to invest in great design. This eventually led Sterling Paper products to be exported abroad.

However, it wasn’t Lim Bon Liong’s Sterling Paper or even his next venture, SL Properties, that led him to be one of the most talked about billionaires in the country. In 2000, Lim Bon Liong was inspired to launch SL Agritech in a bid to make the Philippines self-sufficient through hybrid rice, which he first learned about from China. SL Agritech was an ambitious project — one that required much research and resources from the Sterling Group with a high chance of not getting any returns for a long period of time. However, it was a risk that paid well eventually as SL Agritech eventually hit its winning rice variety — the SL-8H. This variety of rice is able to produce four times the national average of 3.3 metric tons per hectare at a whopping 14 metric tons per hectare.

From his interview in the Manila Standard, Lim Bon Liong shares about the struggles of SL Agritech is paving the way for the Philippines to become self-sufficient and eventually, a net exported in the coming years. “It was never easy, how we got we are now. Especially, when we ventured into agriculture. Money was not the only thing invested. Pain, frustration and hardships were on the top of the list. But basically frustration. When I bought the 40-hectare property in Laguna for the needed research facility, I almost backed out. P100-million [investment] for a 40-hectare land, that was really too much that time. But I bit the bullet,” said Lim.


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Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 20, 2017.  For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit  www.aba2017.com

 

5 Reasons Why You Should Apply for the ASEAN Business Awards

Wednesday, July 5th, 2017
ASEAN Business Awards 2016 held in Laos.

ASEAN Business Awards 2016 held in Laos.

Joining the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) can make all the difference for large, medium, small and micro enterprises alike. Many of the most recognized businesses and the up and coming ones across the ASEAN are amongst the ABA’s past awardees. Here are five reasons why applying for the ASEAN Business Awards will be worth your while:

1) Exposure
For many awardees, the ABA is the launching pad for greater opportunities for their business. With the ABA’s vast and diverse audience, being amongst the businesses who are widely recognized definitely brings in more interest in one’s business.

2) Validation
Garnering an ABA award validates the hardwork, growth and impact entrepreneurs have poured in into their ventures. Validation leads many entrepreneurs to push forward and expand their businesses into greater heights.

3) Network
The circle of awardees and even finalists for the awards are amongst the best of the best in any country and perhaps, the whole region. Furthermore, receiving an ABA award can earn you the much needed credibility and respect amongst your peers.

4) Knowledge
Learning about ventures and best practices from different ventures across the many industries present in the ASEAN can help one’s business develop as well. Also, the panel process can also allow you to know more about your own business. With that knowledge, one can easily amplify on their business’ strengths and improve on their weaknesses.

5) Going Global
Through the ABA, many businesses interested in expanding their markets beyond their borders can have their starting point. Because the ABA is the biggest business awarding exclusively for the ASEAN, being recognized will mean one’s business is up to par with global standards. Furthermore, being exposed to the ABA’s global community will mean business owners will get insider tips on how to go global and improve their businesses.


ABA 2017 Footer 600x106
Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 20, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com

Young and Thriving ASEAN Entrepreneurs Changing the Game

Thursday, June 29th, 2017

These group of under 30 individuals have gained international recognition for their entrepreneurial drive, innovative spirit, and business success. Their young age hasn’t stopped them from greatly impacting their respective fields that range from energy, agriculture, education, food and many more. Here is the definitive list of young entrepreneurs from the different ASEAN countries who are drastically changing the entrepreneurial landscape:

PHILIPPINES

Leandro Leviste (Solar Philippines)
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A 23-year-old undergraduate at Yale University and son of Senator Loren Legarda and businessman Tony Leviste. Leviste started Solar Philippines in 2013 when he saw the opportunity of providing solar power in the Philippines. His goal is to put solar panels on every single rooftop to help bring down electricity rates in the Philippines. Solar Philippines partnered with the country’s biggest mall provider SM Prime Holdings for his company’s projects. Leviste is planning to do more solar panel projects for other malls.  Solar Philippines is said to be the Philippines’ top solar power provider and is the largest developer of Solar Rooftop power plants in South East Asia. Solar Philippines is committed to sustainable development and renewable energy to help reduce both electricity costs and carbon footprint.

Raphael Antonio Mijeno and Aisa Mijeno (SALt)

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A graduate of Bachelor of Science in Business Management and has worked for an Australian and British firm. He has background in accounting, finance and sales. Naturally born artistic, he has an eye for art and design. SALt was conceived when Aisa, a computer engineer and member of Greenpeace Philippines experienced living with the natives of the Kalinga mountains and realized that they only had kerosene lamps to be able to see things at night. As kerosene is by no means affordable, safe or sustainable, she decided to come up with an alternative. She then decided to partner up with her brother, Raphael since he was a business management graduate. A partnership between Raphael and his sister Aisa was able to create Sustainable Alternative Lighting, a sustainable and cost-effective ecologically designed lamp powered by tap water and table salt. The concept has gained recognition and won awards all over the region.

INDONESIA

Gibran Huzaifah Amsi El Farizy (eFishery)
eFishery founder and CEO Gibran Huzaifah was a fish farmer-turned-agriculture tech entrepreneur. He started his entrepreneurship while he was in his second year in college. He set up catfish farming business in 2011 and built it until it has 83 units of hatchery ponds now. After he graduated from biological science ITB in 2012, he saw an opportunity in supporting technology for fish farmers. He began to build eFishery through fish farming in Indonesia that enable farmers to feed the fish automatically, sense the fish appetite, and connected to the internet. After months of research and hundreds of units of sales, eFishery is now recognized as one of the most distinguished IoT startups in Indonesia, as it is focusing and addressing the big issue and creating impacts for both people and environment.

Indonesia's Gibran Huzaifah Amsi El Farizy (eFishery) and 4.Heni Sri Sundani Jaladara (Smart Farmer Kids in Action & AgroEdu Jampang Community)

Indonesia’s Gibran Huzaifah Amsi El Farizy (eFishery) and 4. Heni Sri Sundani Jaladara (Smart Farmer Kids in Action & AgroEdu Jampang Community)

Heni Sri Sundani Jaladara (Founder, Smart Farmer Kids in Action & AgroEdu Jampang Community)
Born into poverty, Sundani went to Hong Kong as a domestic helper to support her family. Despite unfortunate events, she was able to attend college and graduate with honors from St. Mary’s University in Hong Kong with a degree of Entrepreneurial Management. Upon returning to Indonesia, she founded Smart Farmer Kids in Action & AgroEdu Jampang Community. It’s a free school and community program to help eradicate poverty.

SINGAPORE

Christopher Hwang and Jonathan Shen (Cofounders, The Golden Duck)

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The Golden Duck Founders: Jonathan Shen (left) and Christopher Hwang (right).

Jonathan Shen is a marketing manager for the Massive Collective Group of companies, and Co-Founder of TGD (The Golden Duck) Singapore. Chris Hwang is a serial entrepreneur, potential law school dropout and Co-Founder, TGD (The Golden Duck) Singapore; Co-Founder, Impressionist: The Interview Specialists; Investor in Suite 26, Vanity Lounge, and Armoury Gastrobar; Investor in Massive Collective. As the cofounders of Singaporean food company, The Golden Duck Co., Shen and Hwang took advantage of a craze for salted egg yolk there, by creating a series of handcrafted gourmet snack products – from potato chips to crunchy fish skin – with this distinctive flavor. The Golden Duck Co. now sells an average of 10,000 packets of snacks per week.

Qin En Looi, Ying Cong Seah and Oswald Yeo (Cofounders, Glints)

From left: Glints founders - Oswald Yeo, Qin En Looi and Ying Cong Seah.

From left: Glints founders – Oswald Yeo, Qin En Looi and Ying Cong Seah.

Three Singaporean entrepreneurs dropped out of Berkeley, Standford and Wharton to launch Glints, a talent recruitment and career discovery platform for young people to find the right internship and job opportunities. Glints sought to bridge this mismatch between employer needs and skills young talent have on offer. They started by helping theirs friends source for internships by building up their career readiness through practical & real-world experiences.  Glints has managed to raise $2.7 million from East Ventures, Singapore Infocomm Investments, 500 Startups and others with a 20% monthly growth rate.

MALAYSIA

Chee Hau Goh and Nadhir Ashafiq Zainal Abidin (Cofounders, TheLorry)

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TheLorry Founders: Chee Hau Goh (left) and Nadhir Ashafiq Zainal Abidin (right).

Goh worked as a cargo manager for several global airlines before founding his own business, while Ashafiq has worked as an associate at the CIMB investment bank. Founded in 2014, The Lorry offers on demand cargo transportation services throughout Malaysia. The startup helps more than 1000 drivers with clients who can book vehicles as well as extra services such as packing and dismantling via its online platform.

Neelofa (Founder NH Prima International Sdn Bd)

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A Malaysian actress, television and commercial model before entering into the world of entrepreneurship. She loved fashion and had a passion for business so she combined the two and proceeded to set up her own label. Neelofa and her partners decided to revolutionize and simplify modest fashion, to make shawls more practical and easier to wear. After countless trials and errors, they came up with a design for an instant shawl and launched Naelofar Hijab in 2014. They started selling the shawls online and at bazaars. The instant shawls were a hit and there was an increase in demand. Currently there are stocks in Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore. Business has expanded and along with Naelofar Hijab, Neelofa have also created two other labels Nalelofar Abaya, featuring modern and stylish abayas and Lofalens, a brand offering fashionable contact lenses.

THAILAND

Vasa Iamsuri (Founding Partner, Fastwork Technologies)

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Iamsuri is the founding partner of Fastwork, the fastest growing online freelance marketplace in Thailand. The startup matches companies, mainly small and medium enterprises, with over 3,000 freelancers who are experts in 50 categories such as software development, design and illustration, content marketing, and video editing. Users can browse a variety of freelance categories and start talking to the freelancer and If there a match they can then place an order. Unlike other freelancing sites, Fastwork protects both sides of the marketplace. The startup has so far generated US$300,000 in income for freelancers and this number is growing at 37 percent month-on-month.

CAMBODIA

Daroath Phav (Executive Director WaterSHED)

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He is the Executive Director of WaterSHED. He has a background in accounting and audit, a strong sense of business and an eye for detail.He previously served as WASH Marketing Manager, responsible for WaterSHED’s pioneering sanitation marketing activities. He has been a driving force behind many of the organization’s leading initiatives, including its linkages with micro-finance for consumer purchase. Mr. Phav coordinates market development activities in rural Cambodia across a variety of stakeholder, partners, and donors. Managing a team that works across an area that is home to 40 percent of Cambodia’s population, he ensures the accountability and transparency of the organization, and oversees staff training and program quality.


ABA 2017 Footer 600x106
Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 20, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com

ABA Awardee Tony Fernandes’ Childhood Dream Turned Reailty — ‘Now Everyone Can Fly’

Thursday, June 15th, 2017

“If you have a happy workforce they’ll look after your customers anyway. You can have all the money you want in the world, and you can have all the brilliant ideas but if you don’t have the people, forget it.” – Tony Fernandes

Tony Fernandes – a Malaysian entrepreneur born in Kuala Lumpur, had a childhood dream of owning his own airline. He left Malaysia at the age of 12 to study at Epsom College in Surrey, England and then graduated from London School of Economics. Fernandes, an accountant, started his career with Warner then moved to Richard Branson’s Virgin Communications only to move back to Malaysia to explore a career in the music industry. He became the youngest managing director of Warner Music, Malaysia. After his career in music industry, he decided to finally fulfil his childhood dream of owning his own airlines.

Tony Fernandes, CEO of Air Asia won an ASEAN Priority Integration Sector Award: Aviation in 2015

Tony Fernandes, CEO of Air Asia won an ASEAN Priority Integration Sector Award: Aviation in 2015

As a firm believer of multiculturalism, Fernandes wanted to generate an airline that was accessible and affordable but with great style.  Instead of starting from scratch, Fernandes bought an existing airline; Air Asia. Right after the 9/11 terror attacks, Fernandes mortgaged his home to buy Air Asia – an ailing Malaysian owned airline for one ringgit with $11 million worth of debt.  After a year in business, Air Asia broke even and was able to settle all their debts.  Fernandes was able to turn an ailing airline into a profitable budget airline in a span of 2 years.  AirAsia has grown from a Malaysian domestic airline to the largest low-cost carrier in Asia in terms of fleet size and passengers carried. The story of redemption has been truly exceptional: the budget airline has been named the world’s best low-cost airline hence the tag line “Now everyone can fly”.

Air Asia is molded by culture, openness and transparency. Fernandes maintains a flat culture way of working whereas everyone plays a part in Air Asia and are all equally important. Fernandes says that to him “employees come number one, customers come number two. If you have a happy workforce they’ll look after your customers anyway. You can have all the money you want in the world, and you can have all the brilliant ideas but if you don’t have the people, forget it.” Fernandes adopts a “walk around” management style. According to his interview with BBC, he shared his experience working alongside his staff, “If you sit up in your ivory tower and just look at financial reports, you’re going to make some big mistakes.” For a few days every month he works on the ground or in the cabin crew. He says he’s learned a lot from working on the airline himself.  Fernandes turned down the idea of belt loaders at first but on his next stint working alongside staff, he almost broke his back while loading the plane. He says that without the experience, “I could have made a decision – a very wrong decision that damaged a lot of people and destroyed the morale of the organisation at that level.” Through this, Fernandes was able to create an environment for innovation.

The branding of Fernandes’s airline felt like Branson’s Virgin, down to the color scheme and logo typeface, but the bigger inspiration was the boom in low-cost flying that was transforming Europe’s flightmaps. Soon the fleet was expanding rapidly, and within a decade Air Asia was flying 30 million passengers annually. He is one of the first CEOs to harness the power of social media networks to sell tickets and market his airline. Fernandes believes in involving himself in the day-to-day functions of an airline.

While the group’s HQ is in Malaysia, the Air Asia brand has become a pillar for foreign airlines in which Fernandes has a stake. He bought 49% of the then AWAIR, an Indonesian low-cost carrier, in 2004, rebranding it as Indonesia Air Asia the following year. Similar joint ventures have brought Air Asia into the Philippines, Thailand, Japan and most recently into India. With large numbers of new planes in order, Fernandes has spoken of Air Asia X — linking Europe and Asia via low-cost long haul in the years ahead, starting with a London route.

Fernandes has also made ventures in other arenas – in Britain, he most famously bought football club, the Queens Park Rangers, and a Formula One racing team to add to his hotel, education, mobile phone and insurance ventures. Fernandes has received numerous awards from the industry observers and international press alike. Among the awards are, ‘Malaysia CEO of the year 2003’ by American Express and the Business Times, ‘Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year – Malaysia 2003’ at the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards in 2004, ‘Airline Business Strategy Award 2005, the first Asian to receive the Forbes Asia Businessman of the Year award in 2010, and most recently, the 2016 EY ASEAN Entrepreneurial Excellence Award.

It’s easy to see that Air Asia is now an ASEAN champion with global recognition. One that has connected the different communities through making air travel accessible to all.


Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com

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Winners Circle: A Look into Previous ABA Awardees from Each ASEAN State

Thursday, June 8th, 2017

Since 2007, the ASEAN Business Awards has already honoured and celebrated a diverse set of 174 outstanding businesses across the region. Every year, the awards only get bigger and grander as prosperity and awareness is beginning to grow in the region. Awardees span across different fields and represent unique and strong companies that are propelling the ASEAN economy. This year, the Philippines serves as the host of the of the ASEAN Business Awards 10th year and has introduced a new category — the Inclusive Business Award. The anticipation continues to grow for the announcement of the newest batch of ABA awardees on September 6, 2017, at the Okada Hotel in Manila. As the wait ensues, lets look back at previous winners who have made their homeland proud by exhibiting exemplary business leadership and ingenuity:

1) Anusia Ramsamy
Women Entrepreneur Award (2016) — MALAYSIA

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 1
Anusia Ramsamy is the Sales and Marketing Director of VG Offshore Containers International, the largest manufacturer of container units in Malaysia and amongst the largest in the world. A 2nd generation leader of the family business, Ms. Ramsamy joined the family business initially set-up by her father in 2006. On her first year in the business, she was able to lead the company sales to increase by an astounding 41%. To date, her leadership has grown the company’s revenue by 600% and their customer base by sevenfold.

Ms. Ramsamy’s exemplary leadership at VG Offshore Containers International has exponentially transformed the company from a medium-sized family enterprise to an internationally recognized one. The outstanding manufacturing company is poised for greater growth in the near future with Ms. Ramsamy at the helm.

2) Sunlight Foods Corporation
ASEAN SME Business Excellence Award in Employment (2016) — PHILIPPINES

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 2
Crispin R. Muyrong, the Co-founder and Vice President of Sunlight Foods Corp., received the prestigious award last year on behalf of his company Sunlight Foods Corp. Mr. Muyrong and his wife founded the food processing outfit in 2000, after years of extensive experience in the food production management and production facility structure design industry. They’ve worked for the likes of Philippine industry food giants such as Universal Robina Corp, RFM, and San Miguel Corporation.

Today, Sunlight Foods Corp. as a tropical fruits processor company — with their mainline of business being processing of fruit preserves — has effectively established itself as the leading supplier for the ice cream, bread, and fast food industries. What is more impressive is that Sunlight has been able to create quality products at lower prices than their competition by doing business sustainably and inclusively. They source their raw materials directly from farmers, provide trainings for all their stakeholders (employees and partner farmers), and have adopted Unilever’s Sustainable Agriculture Code standards amongst several other initiatives.

3) Adventure Myanmar Tours & Incentives
AEC Priority Integration Sector Award in Tourism (2016) — MYANMAR

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 3
Last year, Zar Ni Htwe received the ASEAN Business Award for Adventure Myanmar Tours & Incentives as the company’s Managing Director. Well-versed in the world of tourism and an employee who has risen in the ranks of the company, Mr. Htwe was fitting to represent Adventure Myanmar as their multi-lingual Managing Director and Master of Trainers for Community-Based Tourism.

Adventure Myanmar is a travel company that ensures the quality of their client’s stay in Myanmar. Established in 1993, the company has built long-lasting and trustworthy relationships over the course of two decades with local hotels, resorts and other products/service providers that will ensure a VIP experience for all their clients.

4) G Gear Co., Ltd.
AEC Priority Integration Sector Award in Electronics (2015) — CAMBODIA

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 4
Mr. Sok Piseth is the CEO and Co-Founder of G Gear Co., Ltd, a leading electronics supplier in Cambodia. Mr. Piseth is considered as one of the most active young entrepreneurs that is helping to shape the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Cambodia and is the President of the Young Entrepreneurs Association of Cambodia.

His company, G Gear, is the only strategic partner of LG electronics and is an exclusive partner of Hyundai. Around Cambodia, LG shops and electronics are becoming more accessible to the people thanks impart to G Gear Co. and Mr. Piseth.

5) Lao IT Development
AEC Priority Integration Sector Award in E-ASEAN/ICT — LAOS

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 5
The IT industry is one of the most relevant sectors poised for development in the ASEAN. Lao IT Development focuses on technical research in terms of IT and international technologies. Co-founded by CEO Thanongsack Souksavat, the company is said to specialize on software, which is of high demand in Laos. Furthermore, they translate their research into the local dialect to improve the accessibility of the information to the Laotian people.

Aside from software development, their services also include website development, providing hardware on demand such as IT accessories and equipment, multi-media and events organization, training programs, network and information security solutions and IT support.

6) Health Management International Ltd.
AEC Priority Integration Sector Award in Healthcare (2015) — SINGAPORE

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 6
Healthcare and business is a priority integration sector because ASEAN countries are mostly  developing nations that need collaboration in order to help speed up development in certain areas. Health Management International Ltd. is a healthcare company that is considered to be an early champion of regionalism. Found in countries such as Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, the private healthcare provider owns hospitals such as the Makhota Medical Center and the Regency Specialist Hospital.

On average, the group is able to serve 400,000 patients annually with about 170 in-house specialists working in their various outfits. They also have established a network of 19 patient representative offices across Southeast Asia. They are a primary force in education as they own and operate the Health Management International Institute of Health Sciences in Singapore. At the helm of the company is Group Chief Executive Officer Ms. Chin Wei Ja. Ms. Chin’s family has largely controlled the business with her mother Gan See Khem as the Executive Chairman and founding member, while her brother Chin Wei Yao is the Executive Director.

7) Megamas Training Company
Most Admired ASEAN Enterprise Award in Employment (2013) — BRUNEI

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 7
Megamas Training Company was formed in 1989 as a Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) training center with its first facility in Mumong, Kuala Belait in Burnei. Today, they are Southeast Asia’s leading HSE training and consultancy provider, racking up awards and honors on a regular basis.

Megamas provides consultancy services and are specialists in Safety Management Systems. Other consultancy services they may provide include noise assessment, air monitoring, and carbon footprinting. They also provide training programs for emergencies in offshore, fire, first aid, technical, materials handling and marine training, which can be conducted virtually anywhere and all up to international standards. The group is largely led by its Excecutive Advisor Mohd Roger Ainsworth.

8) Wise Concetti Limited
ASEAN SME Business Excellence Award in Growth (2015) — VIETNAM

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 8
Connecting people is one of the most imperative challenges the ASEAN has to face. While a lot of focus has been put on the physical and infrastructural connection of states, Wise Concetti has taken it upon itself to address another connection barrier — language.

The company was established in Vietnam by Wise Kim, the current President and Chairman, as a localisation service provider. Their mission is to help global clients reach the ASEAN’s developing market by providing multi-sector document translation, website and software localisation, multi-lingual DTP, and software testing and development. Today, they are one of the leading localisation service providers and employ more than a 100 in-house linguists in Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Lao, Cambodia, Myanmar and the Philippines.

9) Martha Tilaar Group
Most Admired ASEAN Enterprise Award in Innovation (2008) — INDONESIA

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 9

Martha Tilaar is the founder and Chairwoman of the Martha Tilaar group, a pioneering beauty company who has innovatively brought traditional Indonesian beauty traditions to suit the modern age. The company is a leading producer of high-quality beauty products and services. They use traditional herbal ingredients and other natural plant extracts and creates modern cosmetic and beauty products, which they ship worldwide.

Aside from their beauty products, the group also owns a chain of spas and salons all across Indonesia and professional training centers. As one of the first few businesses awarded by the ASEAN Business Awards, the Martha Tilaar group is best known for their active promotion of eco-friendly, natural, and eastern beauty based on their core values of culture, environment and women empowerment.

10) Chanoen Pokphand Foods Group
Most Admired ASEAN Enterprise Award in CSR (2013); ABA Award for Outstanding Business Growth (2011) — THAILAND

Past ABA Awardees Website Card 10
As one of the world largest conglomerates, it’s no wonder why Chanoen Pokphand Food Group is a two-time recipient of an ASEAN Business Award. They are Thailand’s largest meat and animal-feed producer and is the leading agro-industrial and food conglomerate across the globe. Currently, the CP Group employs over half a million people worldwide.

If that’s not impressive enough, the CP Group has also dedicated its resources to sustainability management, which focuses on society development, win-win partnerships, and supporting community livelihood. The company is praised for their efforts to direct all facets of their company to sustainability — from aiming for completely sourcing their raw materials from sustainable sources to sustainablity in the supply chain through supporting farmers and collaborating with communities. CPF Group is led by Owner and Chairman Dhanin Chearavanont.


Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com

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Glocal Revolution: Local Brands, Global Reach

Monday, June 5th, 2017

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As efforts across the ASEAN are focusing on making the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) a reality, talks on how local businesses can make that leap towards going global have become widespread. However, even before the launch of the AEC, several Philippine brands have already begun creating waves abroad. Here is the definitive list of Philippine brands who have taken ‘glocalization’ to greater heights.

jollibee
Jollibee

There has not been a brand that perfectly embodies all that is good about being Filipino quite like Jollibee. Hardworking, joyful and family-centered — these are the values that Jollibee continues to portray alongside providing fast-food that satisfies the Filipino tastebuds. It is no wonder that Jollibee is the most dominant fast food chain in the country.

As a homegrown brand, the jolly red bee has been able to weave itself deep into the hearts of Filipinos all over the world. Filipino communities flock to their restaurant openings whenever they launch within their vicinity.

Today, Jollibee has a global network of 80 stores in countries with big Filipino populations like the U.S., Vietnam, Brunei, Jeddah, Qatar, Hong Kong and Kuwait. Jollibee truly offers a taste of home to Filipinos, wherever they may be in the world.

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Potato Corner

Everyone’s favorite flavored fries kiosk has bolstered its way into the global arena, one corner at a time. Potato Corner has peppered Filipino malls and commercial spaces since 1992. 25 years later, the well-loved Filipino snack has successfully captured the global market with stores present in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Panama and the USA.

An interesting fact about the spread of Potato Corner to other countries is that, more often than not, their franchisees were once young Filipinos who have fond memories of having the delectable finger food during their childhood. Today, these Filipinos wish to bring that experience to their new hometowns, and with Potato Corners very appealing franchise model, it hasn’t been hard to do so.

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Universal Robina Corp.

Universal Robina Corp. (URC) is a Philippine pioneer in the food and beverage industry. With over 5 decades worth of service to Philippine families, URC has also built a presence in the ASEAN Market. As a formidable market leader, URC’s line of products have been strongly ingrained in the Filipino snacking make-up with it’s chips, instant noodles widely seen across sari-sari stores nationwide.

Today, the company dubbed as the ‘first Philippine multinational’ has established its brand of snacks and drinks in China, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Singapore Hong Kong, New Zealand and Australia.

san miguel

San Miguel Corporation

San Miguel Corp. is considered as the largest Philippine corporation. The conglomerate’s most famous brand is the classic San Miguel Beer under its subsidiary San Miguel Brewery. The beverage has penetrated the markets of over 24 countries worldwide. To date, San Miguel Brewery has also established Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand. Throughout more than a century of serving cold, brewed drinks across borders, San Miguel Beer has remained the dominant brewery in the country, holding 90% of the market despite many foreign entrants trying to compete with the local brand.

Aside from breweries, San Miguel has also ventured into other industries mainly oil (Petron), power generation (SMC Global Power Holding Corp.), and infrastructure (San Miguel Holding Corp.).

penshoppe
Penshoppe

While the local fashion retail market has seen many global brands entering the market, Penshoppe is aiming to go global itself by driving its brand into international territories. Penshoppe is widely known in the country for securing globally renowned endorsers such as Kendal Jenner, Gigi Hadid, Cara Delevigne and many more. In a bid to attract more regional markets in the ASEAN, Penshoppe has launched a campaign locally that features local endorsers. This move is the initial step to hopefully launch similar campaigns in countries such as Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia and Malaysia.

The local retail brand truly wants to embody the vision of ‘glocal’ — a homegrown brand that uplifts its local roots but also celebrates global diversity.

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Max’s Group

The Max’s Group is the home of several well-loved Filipino restaurants with Max’s, the namesake of the company, at the helm of them all. Aside from the go-to family restaurant for any and every celebration (Max’s has served as the venue for birthdays, receptions, graduation parties, etc. of Filipinos for generations upon generations), The Max’s Group has acquired other foodie favorites such as Pancake House, Teriyaki Boy and Yellow Cab.

While Max has largely been preoccupied with housekeeping after its acquisition of the aforementioned restaurants, they have recently set their sights on expanding globally. Last year, they announced that they aim to open 200 international outlets by 2020. Their expansion tactics initially focused on countries with big OFW populations such as U.S., Canada and the United Arab Emirates. However, the group has already secured bids to expand to Brunei, Malaysia and Singapore.


Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com
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Street Vendor Turned ‘Juice King’ Alfredo Yao is the First Filipino ABA Awardee

Monday, May 29th, 2017

Credibility is built, not given. Respect is earned, not bought” – Alfredo Yao

Alfredo Yao is undoubtedly a self-made man. After the death of his father when he was only 12 years old, Yao stepped up and became the breadwinner for his mother and six siblings. In the video above, Yao tearfully shares of his personal sacrifices such as sleeping in sidewalks as a street vendor or being the only one who didn’t get to finish school. But the tears were not from shame or sadness — they come from a place only one who has managed to overcome vast adversity in their life, knows. From a roughing it out as a street vendor, Yao is known today as the man who built the widely regarded Zest-o Corporation and an inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs across the ASEAN.

Yao was featured in Go Negosyo’s first edition of Joey Concepcion’s 50 Inspiring Entrepreneurial Stories. There he shared that entrepreneurship is a great equalizer because the entrepreneurial spirit cannot be bought or inherited “You learn it. I don’t think it’s inborn. They consider me a Tsinoy but I consider myself a Filipino. I was born in the Philippines and studied here. The Chinese have a good side and so do the Filipinos. Ang napuna ko lang sa Pilipino, sasabihan nila sa’yo, ‘pag bata ka pa, mag-aral ka nang mabuti para padating ng araw, makapagtrabaho ka ng maigi.’ Yun na ang ultimate goal. We should instill in children’s mind na dapat huwag makuntento na maging empleyado na lang. Kahit sa bangketa yan, sariling hanapbuhay yan. At the end of the day, it’s fate. Kanya-kanyang linya sa buhay.”

Alfredo Yao is the first Filipino to win an ASEAN Business Award back in 2007. His company Zest-O won the Most Admired ASEAN Enterprise in the Innovation Category.

Alfredo Yao is the first Filipino to win an ASEAN Business Award back in 2007. His company Zest-O won the Most Admired ASEAN Enterprise in the Innovation Category.

It’s no wonder that Yao was the first Filipino, and first ASEAN entrepreneur, to win the Most Admired ASEAN Enterprise in Innovation Award during the ASEAN Business Awards initial run back in 2007. Innovation is truly not something one can simply buy into. In fact, it takes an enterprising and humble spirit to lead innovation that is lasting and relevant.

Yao’s Zest-o Corporation, for example, was bred from an unrelenting passion to make something out of nothing. The beverage industry leader is known for being the first to bring the tetrapack technology to the Philippines. In fact, the story behind Zest-o was that Yao brought in tetrapacks (a.k.a. doypacks) to sell them to existing beverage companies as a new way to package their products. When no one showed interest, Yao decided to develop his own juice formula to package in tetrapacks and the rest is history.

This knack for innovation and resilient spirit is truly what makes Alfredo Yao admirable. While most established and traditional business are buckling in the face of technology disruptions and changing economic tides, Yao is largely unfazed. In his eyes, innovation, disruption and persistency is what got him far and he only wishes that more and more enterprises will be able to rise from meager circumstances to become beacons of hope.

“I started this business with just 3,000 pesos — and I’m not ashamed of that. If you want know how poor I was… look for the 10 poorest in a room of people, I was probably one of those 10. So, don’t lose hope.”

True enough, Yao at the helm of the three decades old corporation, still continues to dream big for the company. In a feature in Entrepreneur Philippines Magazine back in July 2015, he shared that “We [Zest-O Corp.] still continue to improve our products, our facilities, our technology so that we can serve our customers better. I still dream of seeing Zest-O as a big global brand. I never stop dreaming. Libre naman.”


Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit  www.aba2017.com

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Cebuano Social Enterprise Weaves Filipino Cultural Tradition and Business into an ASEAN-Recognized Enterprise

Sunday, May 21st, 2017
Anya Lim is among the select Philippine Entrepreneurs who won at last year’s ASEAN Business Awards under the AEC Priority Integration Sector Excellence Awards for Textile. Photo courtesy of Inquirer News.

Anya Lim is among the select Philippine Entrepreneurs who won at last year’s ASEAN Business Awards under the AEC Priority Integration Sector Excellence Awards for Textile. Photo courtesy of Inquirer News.


We support our indigenous weavers by providing market access and capacity- building programs for them to be able to sustain their businesses. We do this by preserving and promoting our weaves and turning them into contemporary designs to attract younger generations.”

Anya Lim— featured in last year’s Go Negosyo’s 55 Inspiring Stories of Women Entrepreneurs— won big in two separate international business awards last 2016. She garnered the special prize at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Efficiency and Success Target Awards held in Lima, Peru and the ASEAN Business AEC Priority Integration Sector Excellence Award for Textile held in Vientiane, Laos.

She serves as an inspiration for women, social entrepreneurs and all retail business owners alike for her company, the ANTHILL Fabric Gallery. ANTHILL stands for Alternative Nest and Trading Hub for Indigenous/ Ingenious Little Livelihood seekers and it is the first creative social and cultural enterprise in Metro Cebu.

ANTHILL had its humble beginnings in the year 2010, when Anya decided to partner with her mother in establishing a textile hub that sources and promotes local fabrics woven by indigenous communities. Anya credits her upbringing, her early exposure to indigenous communities, and her realizations while travelling as her inspiration for embarking on a business focused on promoting the value of Filipino traditional culture and identity.

Beyond promotion, however, Anya dreams of Filipinos weaving local textiles into our lifestyle in all aspects such as clothing, accessories, etc.

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Some of ANTHILL Fabric Gallery's creations. Photo from ANTHILL's Instagram account.

Some of ANTHILL Fabric Gallery’s creations. Photo from ANTHILL’s Instagram account.

“I’ve been fortunate to have travelled to different parts of the world and I noticed that in Asia, we have a very rich weaving culture, but it’s only in the Philippines where we only wear woven fabrics on rare occasions like weddings, cultural dances, Linggo ng Wika celebrations or burials,” Anya shared in an interview with Go Negosyo.

Moving forward, Anya hopes to bring her Cebuano social enterprise to greater heights. By introducing a management system to further professionalize the business, she hopes that ANTHILL will be able to expand its market reach and help more communities in the Philippines.


Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

Join this year’s ASEAN Business Awards! Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 2017. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com

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ASEAN Business Awards: An Overview

Saturday, May 20th, 2017

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(UPDATED) The ASEAN Business Awards is fast approaching and to give an overview of what the awards are all about, we’ve prepared a primer encompassing the background and objectives.

1. Background

Since its establishment by ASEAN Leaders in 2003, the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) has been active in promoting public-private sector partnership and consultation to assist the integration of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2017. In its efforts to bridge ASEAN Governments with its private sectors, the Council launched the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) in 2007 to give recognition to enterprises that have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the ASEAN economy.

ABA was conceived to be the first of its kind in the region, with the dual objectives of recognizing outstanding ASEAN enterprises, and to serve as a platform to spread information concerning the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). In addition, ABA also brings to the spotlight promising ASEAN small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that have the potential of becoming global economic players.

A dedicated Working Group of ‘National Gateways’ consisting of ten ASEAN-BAC Members (one representative from each Member State) forms the foundation of ABA.  The roles of the National Gateways are to promote the event in their respective countries, as well as to select ‘National Judges’ who will be responsible in selecting the recipients of ABA.

Since it was first launched in 2007, ABA has recognised more than 100 companies throughout the region that excel in the categories of: Growth, Employment, Innovation and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). In 2015, however, ASEAN-BAC expanded the categories of ABA to include the Priority Integration Sectors (PIS) of ASEAN element, as well as recognising outstanding young entrepreneurs and women entrepreneurs.

To ensure the high-quality and independency of such a prestigious event, ASEAN-BAC engages a Strategic Partner each year to administer the implementation of the ABA Framework; short listing nominations of companies; administering the Judges Meeting and assist in promoting the event throughout the ASEAN region.  This Terms of Reference (ToR) aims to briefly highlight the event’s objectives, categories and criteria, and tentative plan in carrying out ABA 2017.


2. Objectives

Aside from recognising outstanding ASEAN enterprises, ABA also has the objectives of serving as a platform to disseminate AEC-related information, as well as to bring to the spotlight SMEs that have the potential of becoming global economic players in their respective industries.


3. Categories

PRIORITY INTEGRATION SECTORS – EXCELLENCE AWARDS
Outstanding performance and presence in the ASEAN Economic Community Priority Integration Sectors. Includes the recognition of integration and connectivity between ASEAN business owned and operated by the applicant.

Subcategories: Agro-Based, Automotive, Retail, e-ASEAN, Electronics, Fisheries, Healthcare, Logistics, Rubber-based, Textiles, Tourism, and Wood-Based.

SME EXCELLENCE AWARDS
Outstanding performance and presence in the ASEAN Economic Community Priority Integration Sectors. Includes the recognition of integration and connectivity between ASEAN business owned and operated by the applicant.

Subcategories: Growth, Employment, Innovation, and CSR

SPECIAL AWARDS
Recognizes enterprises that have created massive social and economic impact in the ASEAN community.

Subcategory: Friend of ASEAN

WOMEN ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR AWARD
Outstanding business owner who has demonstrated significant success through leadership, market positioning and company performance.

YOUNG ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR AWARD
Outstanding business owner below the age of 45 who has demonstrated significant success though leadership, market positioning and company performance.

INCLUSIVE BUSINESS AWARD
Outstanding business models that sustainably create social impact through the company’s core business operations.

LEGACY AWARD
The Legacy Award is for entrepreneurs who have passionately committed themselves to growth and excellence while significantly contributing positive impact to the ASEAN Community. These entrepreneurs set examples by standing the test of time, surpassing challenges, and inspiring others through their successes and triumphs.


4PROCEDURE FOR NOMINATIONS / SELECTIONS FOR ABA 2017

The nominations or selections for ABA 2017 can be made via one the following channels:

* Automatic nominations from national level ABAs;
* Application through national gateways; and
* Online applications, either through the website of ABIS or ASEAN-BAC

With regard to application to be made through national gateways, auditors in respective countries are expected to work with national gateways in determining the nominations or selections for ABA. In terms of online applications, appointed auditors’ office in Philippines will take the coordinating role to vet online applications. Auditors are also expected to formulate simple application process, preferably based on the standard of evaluation already accepted in ASEAN.

Application Period: March 15 – July 30, 2017. Application deadline for the Inclusive Business Award Category is on June 30, 20177. For more information about the ASEAN Business Awards 2017, please visit www.aba2017.com

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