Month: January 2020

Phoenix Petroleum wins top honor at 40th Agora Awards


Publicly listed Filipino oil and energy company Phoenix Petroleum has been hailed as the Marketing Company of the Year at the 40th Agora Awards on January 20 at Okada Manila in Parañaque City.

Organized by the Philippine Marketing Association, the Agora Awards is considered the most prestigious marketing distinction in the Philippines, which aims to give recognition to Filipino marketing excellence “with an emphasis on ingenuity, versatility, and innovation.”

“We at Phoenix and Udenna are humbled to receive the Philippines’ highest marketing distinction. And it is especially heartwarming that the Agora shines a spotlight on products and services that have improved the Filipino’s way of life,” Phoenix Petroleum chairman and president Dennis A. Uy said in his acceptance speech.

It is not Uy’s first win at the Agora Awards as he also received the award for Outstanding Achievement in Entrepreneurship–Large Scale for Phoenix in 2013.

“Besides being a fan of marketing and strong brands, I am also a believer in destiny. And in a sense, we were destined to be here tonight: As our vision is to be the indispensable partner in nation building driven by passion to improve the lives of Filipinos,” added Uy.

Phoenix is the first petroleum company that was publicly listed on the Philippine Stock Exchange in 2007 since the oil industry deregulation in 1998. The company has since expanded from offering fuel and lubricants to liquified petroleum gas (LPG) and even acquiring Japanese convenience store chain FamilyMart.

The Agora Awards cited Phoenix for its marketing innovations in its products such as Phoenix PULSE Technology Fuels and Phoenix SUPER LPG, as well as its consumer engagement promotions that have led to the brand’s phenomenal growth in the past year.

“We are honored to be recognized by Agora with this prestigious award. In the last few years, we have aggressively endeavored to connect with our customers and build a solid relationship with our market. This is also part of our thrust to offer the best customer experience as we transform Phoenix into a multi-industry consumer brand,” added Phoenix Petroleum chief operating officer Henry R. Fadullon.Pre

“From a little-known brand several years ago, Phoenix now ranks third in terms of patronage and loyalty, and it is largely because of our best-value offerings complemented by innovative marketing and communication campaigns,” said Fadullon.


 This article is originally published and written by the Business Mirror which can be accessed online at

Get big discounts through the new McDonald’s app

The new McDonald’s App gives customers exclusive and exciting deals that can be redeemed at the Front Counter, Take-Out Counter, or Drive-Thru in all McDonald’s stores nationwide

MANILA, Philippines – Gone are the days of printed coupons with the launch of the new one-stop-shop for all McDonald’s discounts and deals: the McDonald’s App!

The new McDonald’s App gives customers exclusive and exciting deals that can be redeemed at the Front Counter, Take-Out Counter, or Drive-Thru in all McDonald’s stores nationwide. Just download the app, register for an account, select a deal, and show it to the McDonald’s Crew to enjoy big discounts on your McDonald’s favorites. You can now get a Big Mac for only P75 or even two Cheeseburgers for only P99!



The McDonald’s App also makes it easy for customers to find the nearest McDonald’s store with the Store Locator or book their next celebration through the McDo Party website.


This article is originally published and written by the Rappler Philippines which can be accessed online at

5 Business Lessons Everyone Can Learn from McDonald’s PH Chief, Kenneth Yang

Under Yang’s leadership, McDonald’s PH has become one of the leading fast-food chains in the country

Kenneth Yang was only 15 years old when his father, George Yang, brought him along to attend an exposure training in McDonald’s in Hong Kong.

During that time, Yang saw how passionate his father was in bringing McDonald’s to the Philippines. The elder Yang traveled to Hong Kong for training on his own initiative even without the assurance that he will get the franchise from the US.
When his father finally won the right to operate McDonald’s, Yang shared the same passion in the business as his father by volunteering to work as part-time crew in one of their first branches while still studying in college.

Yang wanted to help his father grow the business by learning more about the ins and outs of operations. Right after he graduated, he decided to work full-time as an entry-level branch management trainee that eventually promoted him as a store manager.

Soon, as his experience grew, he applied for work in the purchasing department and later on, in quality assurance and business development dealing with site selection and real estate acquisitions.

Unlike the typical family business, McDonald’s PH was organized to be professionally managed using systems patterned after best practices from the US. Yang had to work his way through the company by reporting to different managers in the organization.

In 2003, 22 years after McDonald’s PH was founded, Yang, having earned the merits of leading the company, took over the company as president and chief executive officer with less than 250 branches.

Today, under the leadership of Yang, McDonald’s PH has more than doubled to 669 in less than fifteen years, making it one of the leading fast-food chains in the country.

How did Yang manage McDonald’s PH to stay relevant amidst rising competition in the industry? Here are the five business lessons every entrepreneur can learn from McDonald’s Philippines CEO Kenneth Yang:

1. Create a customer-focused culture to beat competition

In a competitive market like the fast-food industry, customer satisfaction is a key differentiator. Customers can easily switch to competitors if they are not satisfied with your products and services.

Focusing on providing better service and quality goods with increasing customer loyalty in mind can help the business stand out of the competition in the long-term.

“Competition is inevitable,” Yang says. “There is a lot of competition out there, not just in the quick service restaurant market, but also from convenience stores. We accept that the competition is there and we try to compete by giving our best to the customers through value pricing, quality products and a comfortable store environment.

“We try not to be distracted by competition,” he adds. “It is not the right thing to do to just focus on competition without thinking about the customer. Our main focus is on the customer and we grow accordingly when there is opportunity.”

2. Create innovative products and services to stay relevant

Finding better ways to do traditional practices does not only help a business become more competitive but also help develop new markets that can lead to bigger opportunities.

“A lot of innovation will come from understanding your customer and seeing their lifestyle change,” Yang says. “Before, it was the drive-thru but because of lifestyle changes, deliveries have become very important. McDelivery contributes a big portion of our revenues now.

“Another innovation we made was the 24-hour store,” he adds. “At that time, the Philippines was just starting the BPO industry, but today, we made almost all our store 24 hours.

“In innovation, you have to look at it holistically. Sometimes when you compartmentalize the business, you may find it unprofitable. You have to look at the overall benefit to it. Maybe in the beginning, you have to build the market. You may also need to invest in order to develop the market.”

3. Create effective marketing to win the millennials

Millennials are different because they grew up with technology and social media. They are attached to their smartphones and value authentic marketing. Understanding what millennials want is key to capturing this active market.

“Communicating with the millennials is very important through social media, digital marketing, digital commerce and, later, maybe the digital experience also,” Yang says. “That is important to us because the customers today are different. So even in McDelivery, they can order through app, through mobile, through the website and in the future, that will also happen in the restaurant.

“You will see that our restaurants are more modern and contemporary,” he adds. “You have to modernize some aspects of our stores such as the design, lighting, seating and even the music. We are doing it in all outlets.”

4. Create value-added training courses to boost productivity

Investing in training is critical in driving productivity in the business because well-trained employees will not only work competently but also be happier at work.

Providing training to employees is more than sending staff and managers to a weekend course. It’s about customizing the training to both the needs of the business and employees.

“If you invest in your people they will do a great job for you,” Yang says. “You invest in them with the right skills and the right mindset and, in turn, they will also deliver to meet the needs of the customer. McDonald’s in the Philippines today—together with our franchisees—we have about 60,000 people and training is a key critical need.

“One of the things we are very proud of with our training of managers is they can actually qualify to get a diploma from Lyceum when they finish their modules,” he adds. “We have a lot of managers who never went to college but they dream to get a diploma. They are awarded with diplomas based on their experience with McDonald’s because our training is accredited.”

5. Create diversity in product lines to make it more accessible to the local market

Every market has its own culture and peculiarities. Adapting the business to the local market helps in customizing the right value proposition and improving overall customer satisfaction.

Companies that localize their products and services tend to see improvements in consumer engagement, increasing their revenues and customer base.

“Filipinos are very value-conscious and purchasing power is not that high so we have to create products that fit the local taste and are affordable,” Yang says. “We offer McDonald’s global products like the hamburger, cheeseburger and McNuggets which comprise our core menu, but we also offer local favorites such as Chicken Mcdo, which we made better a few years ago, and Chicken Fillet, which is our value priced product.

“Recently, we introduced a new beverage called McFreeze, which is a beverage that comes with different flavors,” he adds. “We also offer many occasional promotional products whether its rice-based, or sandwich or desserts. We are allowed to innovate our own products for the local market and make sure that we deliver to the standard of McDonald’s for safety and quality.”


This article is originally published and written by The Financial Advisor which can be accessed online at

SEAOIL partners with new online delivery platform, Mr. Speedy

Published online by the Business World, 
January 6, 2020

SEAOIL PHILIPPINES, Inc. (SEAOIL), the country’s leading independent fuel player, has signed an exclusive partnership with online delivery platform Mr. Speedy, with the exclusive SEAOIL Boosted VIP card to be given to its drivers.

“As part of its plans to continue giving more perks and benefits to its consumers, we are happy to announce SEAOIL’s new partnership with Mr. Speedy. We want to give Mr. Speedy’s couriers more incentives to enjoy while using SEAOIL fuels,” said Jayvee Dela Fuente, SEAOIL Philippines VP for Corporate and Consumer Marketing.

Mr. Speedy is an online delivery platform that caters to small and medium businesses. Users can schedule deliveries through the Mr. Speedy website or its mobile app.

The Boosted VIP cards issued to Mr. Speedy users will have the highest level in the VIP card tier or Auto-Gold status. The cards will have an exclusive point conversion wherein P100 is equivalent to three points for gasoline, or a P3.00 rebate. The exclusive point conversion is available at participating SEAOIL outlets. Earned points can be used to purchase fuel and lubricants from SEAOIL and may be redeemed as cash.

This article was originally posted by Business World which can be accessed at

Fruitas acquires another brand, Davao property

Published online by the Business Inquirer, 
By Karl R. Ocampo. | January 7, 2020

Newly listed Fruitas Holdings is taking on a bigger challenge as it plans to aggressively expand its operations this year.

In a disclosure to the local bourse, the company said it had acquired the assets of food retailer Heat Stroke Grill and bought a property in Sasa, Davao City, to prepare for expansion in Mindanao.

These significant strides are expected to bring the leading food and beverage kiosk operator to bigger heights, with over 20 brands already in its portfolio.

“The recent acquisition is a key addition to its food portfolio, which will complement Sabroso Lechon and its rice meals concepts,” the disclosure said. “It intends to replicate the success of its past acquisitions, Sabroso Lechon and De Original Jamaican Pattie Shop and Juice Bar.”

Heat Stroke Grill has two outlets located in Fruitas food parks in Quezon City. This acquisition is in line with the strategy of the company for its food parks, viewing them as incubators for new concepts.

Moreover, the new property in Davao City will be initially used as an office and warehouse space in preparation for the company’s fast-growing operations in Mindanao, where 6 percent of the company’s stores are situated.

Currently, Fruitas has 1,068 stores and targets to grow its network to 2,000 stores by 2023. Aside from its flagship brand Fruitas Fresh from Babot’s Farm, it offers other drink variants such as Buko Loco, Buko ni Fruitas, John Lemon and The Mango Farm.

This article was originally posted by Business Inquirer which can be accessed at

PCCI forecasts sustained growth – 7% annual GDP expansion

Published online by the Manila Bulletin, 

The business community yesterday painted a brighter domestic economy that will sustain a 7.0 percent growth over the next decade.

Ms. Alegria Bing Limjoco, newly-elected chairperson of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) said at the Pandesal Forum in Kamuning that a higher GDP growth this year would be made possible with the on-time release of the ₱4.1 trillion 2020 national budget.

“The ₱4.1 trillion national budget will be signed on Monday and plus the ₱400 billion left from the 2019 budget. That means more blessings in 2020,” said Limjoco, the first lady president elected as PCCI chairperson.

Limjoco explained that with the early passage of the national Budget, there will be no more delays in the implementation of government projects. It could be recalled that the enactment of the 2019 budget was delayed due squabbles in both the Senate and Lower House on the issue of pork barrel insertions.

Government expenditure accounts for the biggest boost in the local economy.
Foreign remittances from overseas Filipino workers also contribute big portion that helped fuel domestic consumption.

Limjoco said that if the 2019 GDP will settle at 6.3 percent, growth rate this year could hit close to 7 percent or a more optimistic 7.5 percent.

Aside from the economic boost from the huge budget to be spent for the “Build Build Build” projects, Limjoco cited the booming tourism sector.

“The Philippines is the rising star in Asia and this is a decade of growth in Asia,” said Limjoco noting that otther developed economies like EU are not growing.

“We are growing 7 percent this year and the next decade. We are in the center of growth,” she said.

Last year as president of PCCI, Limjoco said she received more than 50 courtesy calls from various foreign business groups exploring opportunities in the country.

“Sometimes, I received three courtesy calls a day. These groups want to invest here particularly in agriculture,” she said.

Henry Lim Bon Liong, president of the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc., said the economy is well poised to hit 7-7.5 GDP this year.

Aside from the budgetary boost, he cited the influx of Chinese tourists. Last year, there were more than 2 million Chinese tourists or a fourth of the record-high 8 million tourist arrivals in the country in 2019.

In addition, FFCCCII Vice-President Cecilo K. Pedro cited the continued economic growth.

He, however, pushed for the passage of the CITIRA bill to remove the cloud of doubt in the minds of investors.

Limjoco also echoed for the passage of the bill to ensure investors will choose the Philippines over other Asean countries.

This article was originally posted by Manila Bulletin which can be accessed at

Binalot’s DAHON program expands

Published online by the Business Inquirer, 
December 29, 2019

The fruitful relationship between Binalot and Barangay Buhanginan in Nagcarlan, Laguna, started after the devastation of Luzon by Typhoon “Milenyo” in 2006. Harsh winds and heavy rains damaged most of the banana leaves which were being supplied to the fast-food chain.

“Banana leaves are very fragile and most of the trees and leaves were ripped by the strong typhoon. We were then forced to import our leaves from Iloilo but the costs were not sustainable. That was the time we decided to go straight to the source,” recounts Rommel Juan, CEO of Binalot Fiesta Food, Inc.

And so the search for the source started, leading Juan to the quaint town of Nagcarlan nestled at the foothills of the mystic Mount Banahaw in Laguna.

“Vendors in the market told me to go to Nagcarlan. I found myself visiting the markets and talipapa in that town, asking where the leaves come from. Locals pointed me to the dahunan in Barangay Buhanginan,” Juan says.

There, he met resident Rodney Oriel who then agreed to supply banana leaves for Binalot. What started as an initial order of 3,000 cut pieces of banana leaves evolved into a community livelihood program participated in by 30 families under Binalot’s CSR program dubbed Dahon (Dangal at Hanapbuhay para sa Nayon)—an ode to Binalot’s iconic banana-leaf packaging.

Banana is one of the most important fruit crops of the Philippines, with the country producing 9.36 million metric tons of bananas on 448,000 hectares of land. However, except for the export Cavendish variety, banana is grown largely in small farming communities in backyards such as in Nagcarlan, traded in markets by local entrepreneurs, and consumed locally.

Running for 13 years now, the Dahon program has provided impoverished banana farmers with an added opportunity to profit from the banana trees growing in their backyards while ensuring Binalot a steady and reliable source of banana leaves for all its stores across Metro Manila. ‍

Binalot, after all, is famous for its classic Filipino meals wrapped in a banana leaf—stamping the traditional Filipino brand in a modern fast-food setting. ‍‍‍

‍Dahon has received several citations including the Centennial Prize in the 2007 UPS Out-of-the-Box Small Business Contest and the Intel-AIM Corporate Social Responsibility Award (IACRA) at the Asian Forum on Corporate Social Responsibility in 2010.

Running for 13 years now, the Dahon programhas provided impoverished banana farmers with an added opportunity to profit from the banana trees growing in their backyards while ensuring Binalot a steady and reliable source of banana leaves for all its stores across Metro Manila.

Oriel acknowledges DAHON for changing the lives of many families in the community. “Income was very difficult before as the supply of bananas from the wild trees was not steady year-round and work on the farm was not a regular arrangement.

Back then, we were lucky if we were able to eat twice a day. Today, we have more than enough to eat full meals and even merienda. I have been able to send my kids to school, two of them are in college now while the youngest is still in high school. We’re fortunate Binalot came knocking on our doors,” says Oriel.

But Binalot did not stop at the leaves. ‍

Recently, it has partnered with a program called “Embrace” to introduce salted egg production to Barangay Buhanginan and expand the economic benefits of the program to the farmers.

“We’ve thought of harvesting other vegetables and crops but we always hit a roadblock when it comes to finding a market for these products,” shares Irene Lucas, Binalot’s COO.

“Assessing our needs, we figured ‘Why not salted eggs?’ Looking at the volume of our consumption as each Binalot meal comes with one salted egg, we felt we found the perfect match for our banana leaves.”

‍In line with Embrace’s efforts to support the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, Dahon acquired 10 salted egg starter kits and consulted the Department of Science and Technology on the production process for the Eggciting Harvest Project. The starter kits, which were recently awarded to the matriarchs in Barangay Buhanginan, would enable the community to supply Binalot with 1,000 trays of fresh and high-quality salted eggs for its stores every month while receiving additional income from the livelihood program in the comfort of their community.

“The success of Binalot’s CSR program lies in its sustainability, and the way it’s sustainable is because we are the community’s direct market. Banana leaves are our primary packaging and we have salted egg with every Binalot meal. As long as there’s Binalot, it’ll be a continuous partnership and that’s our commitment to the community of Barangay Buhanginan,” says Juan.

This article was originally posted by Business Inquirer which can be accessed at