Tricia Gosingtian: Success Through Fashion Blogging
Unlike other young entrepreneurs with a specific brand or product, Tricia Gosingtian does not have a physical product or merchandise to sell. The twenty-four-year-old calls herself a creative entrepreneur. Her success stems from the fact that she simply pursued her passions: freelance photography, modelling, styling, and blogging, alongside a string of other skills. These hobbies helped her develop her skills as an entrepreneur and a fashion trendsetter. She is now one of country’s highest paid bloggers. A successful high-traffic lifestyle blog can generate up to seven figures from an accumulation of advertising, product placements, reviews and other sources of online revenues.
A graduate of Ateneo de Manila with a degree in Fine Arts and a major in Information Design, Gosingtian built her company from her blog, Tricia Will Go Places. The reknowned fashion blogger modestly claims that the blog, and the business that followed, was born accidentally.
At a young age of 18, despite lack of formal training in photography, Tricia started taking photos related to her interest in fashion, beauty and culture. She knew that there are professional photographers who are more experienced in the field, but that did not stop her. Tricia took and posted fashion photos simply because she is passionate about them.
A newspaper hired her to do street fashion photography. In contrast to fashion designed by famous name designers in studios, street fashion is any style of clothing design that emerged from youth culture. A photographer usually goes exploring places in an urban center where young people congregate, such as parks, rock concert stadiums, music festivals, malls, and university campuses. The photographer then proceeds to spot people in the crowd who stand out based on their sense of fashion, and asks them if they do not mind having their pictures taken.
It was during her stint with the newspaper when Tricia decided to upload her photography work to her blog site. She shares, “Eventually, I wasn’t able to sustain it due to my busy schedule back in college, so I decided to just take my own personal style photos. And the rest just followed.” Tricia admits that she has always been a very active internet user ever since she was in high school. She was not expecting that her hobby will turn into a full-time business venture.
Being a fashionista who loves to collect clothes, Tricia thought of putting her clothes into good use. Her idea was to make a photo documentation of herself wearing the clothes that she loves. Essentially, she became her own photographer and model. Until now, she still posts photos of herself on her blog. Her sense of style and individuality has caught the imagination of young Filipinas all over the country, who look up to her for fashion ideas.
“I never really thought it could grow to something much bigger. I’ve always had a penchant for graphic design so I remember enjoying creating layouts for all my friends’ blogs and for my own blog. Photography came into my life some time back then, when I suddenly grew obsessed with deviantART and sharing my work in this wonderful art community, ” she says.
Tricia works with publications and brands who see her as the icon of youth fashion. It isn’t far from the truth, as the blog regularly features photos of Tricia in her latest fashion getups. She believes that she has a lot of creativity to share throughout Asia and the rest of the world. She calls her style as ‘sophisti-cute’, her own mix of her two influences, Japanese fashion and Western high street fashion.
Tricia finds unique sources for inspiration, beyond the realm of traditional fashion design. “In terms of fashion and photography, I was mostly influenced by Japanese magazines. I wanted to recreate that kind of soft lighting they always had in their photos, so I decided to pick up my own camera and try to produce the same results. Fashion-wise, I don’t strictly follow Western trends, but I do follow Japanese fashion religiously. Coincidentally, Japanese fashion also takes its roots from Western trends,” she observes.
Asked what important traits one must have to be successful, she answers, “Positivity breeds positivity. Nothing good can ever come out of surrounding yourself with negative people who say negative things all the time. Focusing on the positive things can help you look at life in a different, more meaningful way.” As to her definition of success, Tricia replies, “Success is relative! My definition of success doesn’t really have much to do with fame or money, but a lot with being able to carry out my dreams with the presence and support of my loved ones.”
Richard Sanz: The Emperor of Iced Tea and Bibingka
Young entrepreneur Richard Sanz started out with nothing but a business concept and his gut feel. Going by personal instinct and intuition has been considered too risky by many business people. In Richard’s case, it has proven him right in the long run, because he now rules one of the most successful food businesses in the country.
He started his venture in 2004. “I was 23 years old when I resigned from my engineering job in a multinational firm. It was a risky decision as I had a family to provide for, but I went ahead because I was young and excited to have my own business.” He remembers his mother making iced tea from tea leaves and water. With that dearly-held childhood memory, Sanz collected Php120,000 worth of capital from personal loans and created Tea Square, the Philippines’ first specialty iced tea brand.The first Tea Square branch was opened at the Alabang Town Center in Muntinlupa City.
“We are confident that through focused development and brand-building, we can get a respectable market share in three to five years,” he shares. Despite the fact that most food businesses rely on the tried-and-tested iced tea prepared from powder, Richard Sanz has successfully popularized a line of all-natural tea beverages. Food Asia Corporation, his company, currently has four brands and 80 retail outlets nationwide, and has experienced revenue growth of over 1,000 percent during the past years.
“My target was the upscale, health-conscious AB market. Since I had a low budget, I developed my own products based on what I felt the market would enjoy. I also designed the cart, and learned how to use Adobe Photoshop to create my company’s logo and marketing materials. The entire setup took two weeks,” Richard narrates.
“Since I only had one employee, I did all the marketing, accounting, and other tasks myself. But it made me so proud to see people frequenting the store–between 50 to 100 customers came each day, probably out of curiosity. The good thing, though, is we were able to translate that curiosity into continuous sales.”
One way to ensure business success is to to educate the public about one’s products. Richarddid taste tests and set up in-mall posters informing the consumer of tea’s health benefits, such as boosting one’s immune system, preventing cancer, and reducing high blood pressure. He also had the creative idea to use ‘LoyalTea’ cardsto attract more customers. Richard believes in excellent customer service. To show his dedication in satisfying customer demand, he printed his personal cellular phone number on all packaging materials. If that isn’t engaging with your market on a very personal, down-to-earth manner, we don’t know what is.
Tea Square has grown to twenty branches nationwide. “I was able to recover my initial investment in only six months and repay my loans within a year,”Sanz proudly says.
In 2006, not wanting to rest on his laurels, Sanz sought to venture into the bibingka business. His idea is so simple and yet quite effective. “My family likes eating bibingka, but sometimes, we can’t finish a whole serving. So I thought of making smaller portions.” He called it as Bibingkinitan!, a combination of‘bibingka’ with ‘balingkinitan’, which means small or petite in Filipino.
At Php20 per piece, Bibingkinitan! rice-flour cakes are accessible to the mass-based broad C market. It has classic and flavored variants of the classic bibingka recipe, including chocolate, cream cheese, and macapuno.The mini-bibingkas sold like hotcakes. According to Richard, “Bibingkinitan! is the country’s leading bibingka chain today in terms of revenue and store number. It’s also our bestselling brand. We now have over 60 Bibingkinitan! branches.”
One would think that another business success would leave an entrepreneur to settle down, but not Richard, who seems to be quite a natural in handling a business venture. One year after Bibingkinitan!’s launch, he opened another upscale outlet called Bibingka Cafe at the Alabang Town Center in December 2007. Its menu consists of bibingka ala mode, champorado, salabat, tsokolate,and barako coffee, all classic Filipino comfort food and beverages,offered at very affordable prices. Not to be stopped, he opens three more branchesin 2008 at SM North EDSA, SM Clark, and SM Mall of Asia.
To further grow his flourishing business empire, Richardcreated another business division. Calling it Fresh-Foods, its first product offerings are ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook frozen foods, like Stuffees stuffed bread and tilapia ala pobre, as well as fresh poultry produce, like fresh white eggs, red duck eggs, and fresh chicken.
SM Supermarket was impressed with the company’s products and marketing efforts, and offered the opportunity for Richard to develop a brand of consumer food products for the broad C market. These products are now being distributed in major SM supermarkets and hypermarkets nationwide.
Richard notes that FreshFoods’s competition is much more formidable than those of their retail brands, but he remains confident about it. “We are confident that through focused development and brand-building, we can get a respectable market share in three to five years.”
FoodAsia presently has a workforce of almost 100 employees and occupies a 100square meter office in Muntinlupa City. Both Tea Square and Bibingkinitan! have begun franchising, with its combined 20 franchised outlets comprising roughly 25 percent of the current total stores. “We want to establish a presence in all towns in the Philippines,” Sanz says.
In today’s globally-oriented world, an entrepreneur should be able to think in more global perspective. “Innovation is part of our strategy. The product itself is an innovation because we changed the landscape for bibingka. I want to make Bibingkinitan a global brand. All the other food from other countries like Italy, Japan, Vietnam and Thailand are available locally but we have to establish distribution of Filipino food abroad. My dream is to make this Philippine delicacy known globally through Bibingkinitan. We have inquiries in Jakarta, Singapore and Hong Kong today. Hopefully it’s a first step,” the founder of the country’s first bibingka empire says.
DENNIS A. UY : Fueled By Passion
WHILE most businessmen prefer to do business from Manila, Dennis Uy wants to do business close to home in Davao City.
Early this year, Uy—founder, president and CEO of the Davao City based Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Inc.—gave honor to the city as a vehicle for his success receiving the Datu Bago Award for 2013.
“While many prefer to do business or find employment in bigger cities, to me Davao is richer in opportunity and richer in producing the elements of success than any place I know,” he said in his acceptance speech.
With Uy at the helm, Phoenix has grown to be the number one independent oil company in the Philippines in just seven years. From being the top 570th corporation in 2006, Phoenix has risen to the 53rd spot in 2011. It has also been recognized by the Bureau of Customs as the Top 7 Importer in the country for 2011 and 2012, and the Top 1 Importer in the port of Davao in the past two years.
Strong Track Record
Uy is an entrepreneur and senior executive with a strong track record of starting and leading his businesses to profit and growth since graduating from De La Salle University, Manila with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management in 1993.
He is the Chairman, President and CEO of Udenna Corporation, the holding company of Phoenix Petroleum Holdings, Inc. (PPHI) and Udenna Management & Resources Corp. (UMRC), since its incorporation in 2002. Mr. Uy has steered Udenna Group’s expansion to businesses in the transport, petroleum, distribution, shipping, real estate, waste management services, and power industries.
The Group’s consolidated revenues reached more than P15 billion in 2010. For these achievements, Mr. Uy was recognized as a Finalist in the 10th Asia Business Leaders Award by CNBC Asia, 2011 in Singapore. “I don’t know if we would have accomplished what we have accomplished if I grew up somewhere else, but I do know that Davao and Dabawenyos have been an indispensable part of everything that we have achieved,” Uy said. Even as Phoenix has grown to be a national brand, its headquarters remain firmly in Davao City.
“Our city is simply a better place to live, work, and prosper,” Uy said. “We have enlightened, disciplined and competent leadership, talented people, growing infrastructure, and an ideal balance between work and life. Indeed, before President Aquino advocated for ‘daang matuwid,’ it has already been ‘daang matuwid’ here in Davao for the longest time,” he said.
Uy recalled that he started what became Phoenix Petroleum in challenging circumstances. Back then, the business was a single storage tank, 11 employees, and no revenue stream. Still, he gave it a try. “I remained confident that I was surrounded by a community, a government, and an ideal that would be indispensable to our success,” he said.
Uy recalled that after the Oil Deregulation Law was passed in 1998, he saw independent oil companies that were not of the major sprout in Manila. He said he sensed a good business opportunity to bring to Davao, although he admitted it was not an easy start. “The oil deregulation law paved the way for the birth of Phoenix. Without it we wouldn’t be here! The decision was very simple. The industry used to be dominated by three companies, and when you open up an industry where it was dominated by only three companies, there’s really a big chance for us to get market share. Uy said he had then difficulty raising capital and attracting clients. His big break came when Cebu Pacific committed to lease his tanks. This was the start of Phoenix becoming their exclusive logistics provider in all their Mindanao flights.
Uy said he decided to expand to retail, and in 2005, the first five Phoenix stations opened in southern Mindanao. “For us to start in the southern part of the Philippines was not by choice, it was by chance. It was just that I do my business there, I was born there. We started there, and luckily we were able to expand nationwide. It’s always a challenge, even until now, to gain brand acceptability…” Uy said in an online interview.
To expand the company’s financial capability, Phoenix Petroleum listed at the Philippine Stock Exchanged in July 2007, becoming the first, and, so far, only oil company to launch its initial public offering after the Oil Deregulation Law was passed. Phoenix is also one of the few Mindanao companies to be traded at the PSE.
The very successful IPO gave Phoenix the capital it needed to expand, and since then the company has grown significantly.
Compound annual growth rates of revenue have risen by 65 percent, volume by 67 percent, market capitalization by 84 percent, and equity by 50 percent. Cumulative returns of the PNX stock in the five years from its IPO has been over 400 percent.
From its initial five stations, Phoenix has expanded to 300 nationwide by the end of 2012, making it the number one independent oil company.
For his leadership, Uy has received citations in the country and in the Asian region: as finalist in the Asia Business Leaders Award by CNBC Asia for 2011 and 2012; finalist in the Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Philippines; and now the Datu Bago Award in Davao City. He is also the Honorary Consul of Kazakhstan to the Philippines, having been appointed in 2011.
Uy attributed the speed of Phoenix’s growth to “an entrepreneurial-based opportunity to build the future of the downstream petroleum industry, a nurturing and encouraging beginning in our hometown environment, and a commitment to and indispensable relationship with our community, our business partners, our shareholders, and above all, our customers.”
“It’s always our service and our people that are a distinct advantage,” Uy said.
Uy also plays an active role in various business organizations. He is a Member of the Young Presidents’ Organization, Management Association of the Philippines (MAP), American Chamber of Commerce- Davao City, and Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
He is married to Cherylyn C. Uy, and has two daughters: Chelsea Denise and Charlize Donatella.
Looking ahead, Uy says he hopes to sustain the growth of the company.
“The next five years should be a period of growth – maybe a bigger market share, more stations: going from 300 to at least 500. And of course, having a more established brand, and a stronger company, balance-sheet wise.“Other Asian countries have three or five times more stations per capita…there’s a lot of room for growth,” he said.
LYDIA DE ROCA : From Sidewalk Peddler to Millionaire
LYDIA’S Lechon is a household name here in the Philippines, But not many people know that its entrepreneur Lydia de Roca started her business by selling lechon in a small stall in Baclaran market.
In the late 60s, the family-owned lechon store—known as “Mang Turing and Aling Ingga’s Native Lechon”, was doing good business with a modest store located at the Our Lady of Sorrows Church in Baclaran. Lydia, helped out in the said store.
In 1969, after some courtship, Benigno de Roca (a son of another lechon business owner) and Lydia got married. The happy couple had a joyous occasion after their wedding and with PhP500 started their own lechon busiess–Lydia’s Lechon. In a television interview, Lydia related how she used to go with her father, who was a butcher, and how she started selling lechon in Baclaran at the age of 12. “Ito ang naituro sa akin ng tatay ko noong araw, hanggang sa nagtinda ako ng lechon. Twelve years old ako sa bangketa ng Baclaran,” she said. “Yung P500 na yon binibigay ko na sa tatay ko. Pinambili ko na ng baboy niya… Marami yun, P20 lang nun ang baboy eh,” she said. Aside from pigs, she used the money to buy charcoal and sauce for the lechon.
At that time, Benigno was a jeepney and bus driver, so they had to work hard to support their children. “Mahirap ang buhay namin. Pero nagtiyaga kami talaga. Pinagsumikapan namin… Naranasan ko pa yung bahay na nakatuntong sa ilog… Yun ang unang-unang inupahan ko, diyan sa may Tambo sa Paranaque, P35 ang upa sa isang buwan,” she said. Customer’s would flock to Lydia’s Lechon to sample the good food sold there. A big break for the couple’s business came along when one day when executives from the Hyatt Regency Hotel came along to buy some Lydia’s Lechon specialties. From that simple visit came daily lechon orders from the hotel.
“Maski nga di ko kinakaya kinakaya ko eh. Hindi pwedeng mahina ang loob mo. Sasabihin mo, ay ano kaya ang gagawin ko? Tatanggapin ko kaya? Mahirap kaya ito? Kaya ko kaya ito? Ako palaging yes,” she said.
The fame and praise for Lydia’s Lechon spread by word of mouth to many prospective clients, including other hotels and restaurants, and food caterers.
In the 1970′s, the Lydia’s Lechon boneless with paella recipe got the first prize in a competition for local chefs and it soon became one of the specialties of restaurant. It was a boost for the de Roca couple’s business.
After selling lechon from the market for 22 years, de Roca finally opened a restaurant–with a single table–along Roxas Boulevard in 1986.
“Talagang restaurant ang target ko. Kaya lang wala akong kapital pa eh. Hindi ko rin magagawang restaurant. Pero trying hard ako na maging restaurant, kaya naglagay ako ng isang lamesa at isang silya,” she recounted. Soon customers started coming to her restaurant and one of her frequent customers was mall tycoon Henry Sy, Sr., who always had lunch there on Sundays. “Nagkakwentuhan kami tapos meron daw siyang SM Food Court baka raw gusto kong magtayo ng ano… Sabi ko, oho gusto ko,” she said.
In April of 1989 the first branch of Lydia’s Lechon outside of the southern part of Metro Manila , in Timog Avenue, Quezon City was established. This was followed by other stores on the eastern part of the Metro. From there, fast food outlets of Lydia’s Lechon mushroomed within the popular malls of the metropolis. Although originally intended to be a close family corporation, the first franchise of Lydia’s Lechon was sold in 2005 for a fast food and retail outlet at SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City. Today, they are known as the biggest chain of lechon outlets in the country. Presently, there are 21 branches of Lydia’s Lechon located in the Greater Manila area and Cavite.
Now, Lydia’s Lechon has some 15 branches in SM Food Courts, which account for some Php30,000 in daily sales.
The couple is now the proud owner of a 1,500 square-meter property in Baclaran, with a mansion and several luxury cars. It also houses the restaurant’s commissary and roasting area.
The De Roca couple also have their own piggery in an 8-hectare property in Malvar, Batangas where they raise 800-1,000 pigs.
In 2011, De Roca was awarded by Go Negosyo as one of the most outstanding women entrepreneurs of the Philippines.
Despite her success, De Roca remains humble and thankful that her four children—who have all graduated from college—are not spoiled and have helped the business flourish.
“Seven years old pa lang sila dinadala ko sila sa bangketa, kaya ang pangaral ko sa kanila eh sinusunod naman nila ngayon,” she said.
Up to now, De Roca still wields a knife and deftly chops up a lechon at the restaurant.
“Dito nag-simula ang swerte ko sa buhay. Kung sa tingin mo di ako marunong mag-tadtad ng lechon, umasenso kaya ako,” she said.
The smallest lechon sells for PhP6,500, and the capital for each one is in the neighborhood of PhP3,000. Lydia’s Lechon is also famous for its signature sauce made using a special recipe, de Roca said, noting this is still something none of her employees know about. Lydia has kept her lechon naturally simple but with no short cuts. It’s slowly cooked for two hours over charcoal and flavored only with tanglad, pandan, and murang sibuyas.
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Christopher Po : Heir to the King of Tuna
FOR Filipino-Chinese entrepreneurs, running the business is always a family affair.
The same is true with Ricardo Sy Po, Sr., founder of the 34-year old Century Pacific Group (CPG)—makers of Century Tuna and the country’s largest canned food manufacturer–who has bequeathed a huge responsibility of running the corporation to his son Christopher “Chris” Po.
Chris, President and CEO of CPG Holdings Inc., was the man at the helm when the Century food group teamed up with leading global tuna supplier Thai Union and local fishing giant Frabelle to build a US$20-million tuna processing plant in Papua New Guinea back in 2011.
By casting a wider net via a three-way partnership with global leaders in seafood processing and fishing, the Century Pacific Group (CPG) has built an overseas capacity especially for its private label tuna manufacturing business.
Apart from selling its own canned tuna brands like Century, 555, Blue Bay and Fresca, CPG exports to international buyers that, in turn, market canned fish under their own brands (the company also owns Blue Bay and Fresca Tuna, Birch Tree and Angel milk, Kaffe de Oro and HomePride). #OpinYon #FeatureStory
read cont | http://bit.ly/19MalAM
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How Can A Family Business Prepare for the Hard Times?
by: Prof Enrique Soriano
MANY would say (and they have a point) that initially, family members are only active in family businesses, because of the obvious reasons like being able to receive extraordinary financial gains (which they could never receive from other companies), better treatment by the administration, and the opportunity to select their preferred line of duty and their freedom to maintain a particular lifestyle. These are all undeniably true in most cases, but nonetheless, family businesses remain standing, because the family members eventually learn the value of teamwork amongst themselves.
In order to prepare the family members to develop solutions in salvaging the family business, it is always helpful to be honest with everybody’s needs and opinions. A dialogue wherein every single family member will have the chance to voice out his/her needs and thoughts about the company’s situation and other specific issues that need to be addressed could be a healthy practice. Stressing the guidelines beforehand and doing consistent reminders are ways to preventing these from happening. #OpinYon #business
read cont | http://bit.ly/GKaHla
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JUANDER LUGAW : A Little Business That Can Fly
By: Miriam Fabian
WHAT’S in a name? Apparently, a lot.
Juander Lugaw, the name of a small eatery serving lugaw (rice porridge) and “binaklot” (Ilocano for binalot) in San Pedro, Laguna, was inspired by a popular primetime series featuring a local superhero of the supernatural kind–Juan dela Cruz.
The proprietor of Juander Lugaw, Jose Ian Aguilar, admitted his fondness for superheroes, but his search for the right name for his shop proved to be challenging. First he thought of “Super Lugaw”, but after browsing the website of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), he was disappointed to find out that the name had already been taken. Then there was “Lugaw Juan”, but a quick internet search showed that it was already being used by another business.
Luckily for Aguilar, who is also a father of three, one afternoon, his children were watching Juan dela Cruz on television. Thus, “Juan dela Cruz” and a Filipinized reading of “Wonder” (one popular moniker for certain superheroes like Wonder Woman) were merged to come up with “Juander” while their byline was, “Lilipad ka sa sarap” (the taste will make you fly). #OpinYon #business #JuanderLugaw Miam Tan-Fabian
read cont | http://bit.ly/17QHuOZ
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PH tops HK Open Memory Tilt
THE Philippines topped the first Hong Kong Open Memory Championships at the True Light Girls College in Hong Kong last September 28-29.
A 20-member Philippine team got a total score of 15,198 in the event, beating representatives from Mongolia, Hong Kong, Japan, China, Indonesia and India.
“The First Hong Kong Open Memory Championships included events, such as names and faces, random numbers, speed numbers, playing cards, spoken numbers, binary numbers, abstract images, historic/future dates, random words and speed cards,” the Department of Foreign Affairs said.
In a news release, the DFA said Mark Anthony Castañeda won the gold with a high score of 5,239.
Erwin Balines won a silver while Johann Randal Abrina won a bronze in the event, it added.
The DFA said the Hong Kong Memory Championships was founded by the Hong Kong Memory Sports Council and is sanctioned by the World Memory Sports Council.
“Memory sport is for everyone. It has become popular among Western countries for some time and is rapidly gaining popularity in Southeast Asia where more people are aspiring to become mental athletes,” the DFA said. #OpinYon #Foreign #Philippines
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CARLOS CHAN: The Sweet Taste of Success
BUSINESSMAN and Philippine Special Envoy to China Carlos Chan is a newcomer to Forbes magazine’s list of the 50 Richest Filipinos [with a net worth of US$500 million as of July 2013]—but he is certainly no greenhorn in trade and commerce.
The eldest son of Chinese immigrants from Fujian province, Chan is big boss of the family-owned Liwayway Marketing Corporation (LMC), distributor of the popular laundry starch and now the Oishi brand of food products.
Notoriously shy and elusive to the media—often introducing himself as the brother of Ben Chan, founder of Bench apparel—Chan has propelled Liwayway Marketing to international recognition. #OpinYon #Feature #Success #Oishi #LiwaywayGawgaw
read cont | http://bit.ly/1bTOpb7
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