SOHO Square Philippines, in partnership with Red Fuse—WPP’s integrated global team dedicated to serving Colgate-Palmolive—has launched a new brand campaign for Colgate Philippines titled #SmileStrong.

Ari Mandelbaum, marketing director of Colgate- Palmolive Philippines said: “The common Filipino’s ‘resilience’ has constantly been held up as a shining character trait even in the face of natural disasters, violent conflict, poverty, and a number of deep-seated societal issues. However, a growing number of people are seeing ‘The Filipino Resilience’ as a glorified coping mechanism, seemingly resigned to just powering through adversities with a mindset to live just to survive each day. At Colgate, we believe that it takes more than optimism to power through the challenges of today, thus launching #SmileStrong where we encourage Filipinos to believe and uphold the power of Optimism in Action .”  

#SmileStrong spotlights three exceptional individuals, or Muses, whose Optimism in Action sparked positive change among their respective communities and social spheres: Arizza Nocum—a peace advocate, leader, and entrepreneur who co-founded KRIS, a non-profit organization promoting peace through education; Brina Maxino—born with down syndrome but now an assistant teacher, motivational speaker, and a Special Olympics global youth ambassador; and Candy Pangilinan—an actress and a single mom to 16-year old Quentin, who has ADHD and who became her inspiration to write a book, “Mommy Dear: Our Special Love.”

“Our muses live the spirit of Optimism in Action every day, each with their own unique stories and struggles, but manage to rise above their challenges to serve as inspiration to society in their own ways” added Mandelbaum.

This campaign seeks to demonstrate the inspirational power of these remarkable individuals through a series of short videos along with integrated communications across digital and public relations. Colgate will also be launching activations in partnership with muses Arizza, Candy and Brina until 2021.

Caloy Sambrano, managing partner at SOHO Square Philippines, said: “As an agency, we have developed and implemented various equity campaigns in the past, but we must say that this Colgate #SmileStrong campaign is one, if not the most, important campaign that we have ever done. We wanted each and every Filipino to feel inspired and relate to the stories of our muses especially when they see the contents that we put out. We are grateful to have translated the vision of Colgate as a brand, and a company that believes in the potential of Filipinos and encourages optimism in action.”

This equity campaign from Colgate Philippines is a local implementation of Colgate’s global advocacy. It hopes to make the same big impact that other #SmileStrong campaign in other key markets has generated—an increase of brand love and loyalty among consumers to an already number one oral care brand in the world and in the Philippines.

The global pandemic has brought with it no shortage of surprises, but on October 9, 2020, Filipinos were treated to a sight none of them ever thought they would see: a film featuring many of the nation’s largest (often-competing) brands, all working as one towards a common cause. Through a series of vignettes featuring Filipinos of all walks of life, the film drove home that notion of banding together to restart the economy.

Launched under the tagline of “Ingat, Angat” (“Carefully, We Rise”), and broadcast simultaneously on all local channels, radio stations, and online platforms at 6.50pm sharp, the film delivered the powerful message of solidarity, cooperation, and bayanihan in these trying times.

“Having rival brands together in the scenes helped drive the message of unity,” says Melvin Mangada, whose TBWA\Santiago Mangada Puno executed the film and its overall campaign. “The challenge was to strike a delicate balance between safety and vigilance ( ingat ) and optimism and consumer confidence ( angat ).”

Produced by TBWA\SMP, the film was executed for client T3, a public-private task force with a stated mission to Teach, Trace, and Treat Filipinos during the ongoing pandemic. Having already provided and conducted over 3 million COVID-19 tests nationwide, T3 recognized the importance of informing the public about safety measures while rebuilding consumers’ trust that had been affected by the pandemic. TBWA’s job to was find a way to effectively communicate the message.

While the agency’s initial strategy and concepts were ready within a week, Mangada revealed that plans had to be run past members of Congress, as well as the entrepreneurs, broadcast, publishing, media, and online vendors on whose platforms the material would be aired and/or posted. Furthermore, the agency worked on pitching the project to brands and corporations to secure their participation.

TBWA coordinated with dozens of companies representing hundreds of brands to craft the film, enlisting the services of acclaimed director Joel Limchoc to deliver the imagery and emotion needed to get across the film’s indelible message. Produced, shot, and edited with social distancing guidelines firmly in place, months of work paid off, as the film launched on every major Filipino platform on TV, radio, and online.

While many were overwhelmed with seeing major competitors like Petron, Shell, Globe, Smart, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Jollibee, and McDonald’s sharing screen time, many more were touched by the message being imparted. Comments were overwhelmingly positive, with Filipinos expressing surprise, delight, and, most importantly, inspiration, at the film.

Currently comprising 2 online films, 5 TVC’s, 6 radio ads, print ads, OOH, and a Viber community, Mangada shared that the succeeding phases of the campaign will see major TV and film personalities create their own unique chapters which will be released online.

Living in an unprecedented time that called for an unprecedented campaign, and when the nation needed it, TBWA answered the call. Through “Ingat, Angat”, the Agency was able to show, just what can be accomplished when people unite to challenge the impossible.


As part of an initiative to expand its membership across the Asia-Pacific region, ICOM, one of the world’s leading global networks of independent agencies providing advertising, marketing communications, media, digital and related services, has appointed Russell Curtis and Janes Media Advertising (RCJ) as exclusive representative in Australia and the Philippines.

In addition to RCJ offices in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane, the appointment includes LeapOut Digital in the Philippines as well as service coverage in New Zealand. This appointment brings the number of ICOM agency members in the Asia Pacific to 10, covering eight countries.

“We were looking for an agency to represent ICOM in Australia,” said ICOM Executive Director Emma Keenan, and RCJ impressed us with their knowledge of the market and experience working with many long-term clients. In addition, LeapOut, their Philippine agency, comprises a pool of highly talented resources. The Philippines has emerged as a destination of choice for many global enterprises for outsourcing digital marketing initiatives, and we believe this could be a huge advantage to ICOM, our members, and their clients.”

Led by co-owner and executive director Carlos Correa, RCJ, has an impressive list of clients, including Athletes Foot sportswear retailer, Callaway golf equipment, Nimble loans, Polaris vehicles including Indian Motorcycles, Skechers footwear, and Trivago travel search platform.

“Carlos and his colleagues have rich capabilities and THE unique expertise that will help us grow in our Asia-Pacific region, where we are looking to expand our footprint,” said ICOM board chairman Bob Morrison. “Importantly, as the leader of one of the oldest independent agencies in Australia, Carlos also understands the value to entrepreneurs of belonging to a network of like-minded professionals not only sharing business but also sharing knowledge and expertise. He is a welcome addition to the ICOM family.”

Founded in 1965, RCJ group offers a variety of integrated media and marketing communications services involving brand strategy, creative, media, and a digital offering that operates under the name Leapfrogger and covers Australia and New Zealand. The group, one of the longest-standing independent agencies in Australia has grown from six to 50 staffers in the past six years.

LeapOut is a full-service digital marketing agency positioned to help global brands expand throughout the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Its resource and digital marketing support model also can help global agencies enhance their digital capabilities with cost-effective, high-end solutions. The offering is further strengthened this year with the launch of LeapOut360, which provides dedicated marketing specialists, experts to media and digital agencies around the world.

“We have put together a talented team with experience in digital, social, programmatic, content and SEO skillsets to help agency and brand partners thrive,” said Correa. “Our position as a major independent agency is further solidified by our appointment as exclusive ICOM representative in Australia and the Philippines. This game-changing growth opportunity will strengthen our capabilities with current clients and expand our international footprint as well as grow our client roster in our own markets. With our new relationship with ICOM, we are looking not only to build solid friendships and business contacts but also to share insights, innovative ideas, and opportunities that can benefit all parties.”

Information and Communications Technology helped Filipinos survive through the COVID-19 pandemic -- from quickly disseminating info about the virus, keeping them connected even when physically apart, and offering virtual ways for demand to meet supply for almost any commodity.

"The Philippines is no global leader yet in the tech universe. But with an innately intellectual and industrious workforce, what our country truly needs is the opportunity for learning in an uplifting yet ambitious environment. It’s what will get us out of our economic rut and power us through the new normal,"  shares Anne David, segment marketing director of Globe myBusiness.

This is why companies like Spring Valley Tech Corp, an ally of the Globe Partner Network, are putting all their efforts in doing just that. The Globe Partner Network is a program aiming to foster an ecosystem of Tech Enablers with SMEs.

This network aims to drive and speed up tech adoption. SMEs often request for help on where to start, and it takes visionaries with robust muscle and decades-long experiences like Globe myBusiness and Spring Valley to point them in the right direction.

The Silicon Valley of the  Philippines

Unifying their knowledge and developing an incubation hub is the driving force behind the creation of Spring Valley Tech Corp, a rising technological township in Panay, and which has expanded its operations in Negros Occidental. Spring Valley aims to be the Philippines’ counterpart to California’s famous Silicon Valley.

“I thought about the problems of our nation when it comes to technology and innovation. A lot of Pinoys work in the headquarters of companies like LinkedIn or Facebook, but we’ve forgotten how to create our own products. Maybe it’s because of colonization that created a subservient culture for us. Another issue is the terrible gap between what the academe produces and what industries require. What would be a solution to all these? That’s why Spring Valley was born,” shares Spring Valley Tech Corp founder and CEO, Jonathan Defensor De Luzuriaga.

Besides the word spring connoting the season of growth, the business name stands for “Software Products Incubation Group,” a term hailing from one of the Philippine Software Industry Association’s committees, whose initiative for the last 32 years has been to grow the IT knowledge and skills of Filipinos.

De Luzuriaga is developing three arms for Spring Valley. First is Sprint (Spring Valley Incubation and Training), which matches workforce skillset to industry needs. Second is Spring Valley ARK (Advanced Research and Knowledge Center), which is for hardware and software development. And third is Spring Valley Academy, the arm focused on fostering a community of learners that inspires them to be innovators.

The 11-hectare plot also has room for local and foreign IT and BPO offices, tech manufacturing facilities including agri-tech and aqua-tech, sports amenities, and housing units that will establish it into a secure, self-sustaining city.

With several projects already under their belt after the company’s conceptualization only four years ago, De Luzuriaga shares that their journey to build fast inevitably led to some failures. But their fearlessness to pivot fast and repurpose efforts gave birth to sought-after products in the market. He emphasizes, “In the world of innovation, there’s no such thing as failure. It’s just about pivoting or changing direction.”

Another key to realizing De Luzuriaga's vision for Spring Valley, which has been valuable to the company's success, is their active participation in top tech companies. Networking with as many people in the industry as possible, whether locally, regionally, or internationally, is vital to Spring Valley's growth. Through running associations such as the IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines, the Philippine Software Industry Association, and the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines, many valuable connections have turned into partnerships for Spring Valley.  

The rise of innovators

CLEAR PASS (Personnel Access for Safety and Security), a digital gatekeeper solution; Read and Bill, a utilities meter reading platform; and, a job-matching app for undergrads, are products of Spring Valley’s blossoming collaboration with Globe myBusiness, who had shown support beyond the usual telco and data servicing. “It’s imperative that you find the right partners along the very difficult journey [of building a business.] You have to put your money where your mouth is. Globe myBusiness has been supporting our products and requirements. But more than that, they’ve made events that help promote Spring Valley,” De Luzuriaga says.

As two tech-driven companies, their services intersect, and so does their vision. For instance, Globe Labs APIs and other solutions complement the specialized apps and facilities Spring Valley developed for its clients and the township. Aside from APIs, Globe's core services empower their daily operations from direct internet to mobile services. This interdependence will likely grow moving forward, with both businesses’ social responsibility and commercial trajectories aligned to elevate Filipino lives. 

As a member of the Globe Partner Network, Spring Valley is also able to offer connectivity to enable online education.  “We need to tackle academic disciplines for professionals, like Cyber Forensics, Mobile Development, or essential [IT] skills. These will help make our countrymen marketable. Thanks to Globe myBusiness, we can offer connectivity to students.”

The new business landscape

At the onset of the pandemic, Spring Valley’s unique proposition became even more valuable as it offered a safe, self-contained working township. Inquiries soared, whilst businesses pivoting operations online needed swift assistance: an opportunity that grew out of adversity for Spring Valley. “In 2016 when Spring Valley was conceptualized, a lot of people didn’t believe in the concept of having an environment where innovators can work, play, live, and change the world at the same time," De Luzuriaga mentioned.  "Now, [clients] are asking if our facilities are ready. It’s the time now for Spring Valley. A place to create solutions and platforms.” 

Globe has likewise been an ICT leader creating future-ready products that help protect and empower businesses, even before innovative trends rise. An example is GCash that has been around for years before people noticed and utilized it.

De Luzuriaga outlined one of their objectives:  “These days we are betting on at least three things: that scientists develop a COVID-19 vaccine, the government to manage the chaos, and the tech industry to find novel and speedy ways to make pandemic life tolerable. Retraining our IT workforce with specialized courses can put the Philippines at par with the global IT giants. However, it will only be possible if we also support locally made IT products, plus trusting talents and dreamers from our smallest islands, not just those already established in Metro Manila or Metro Cebu.”

“Everything that we do, we equate to a greater purpose. It’s not just about revenue. At the end of the day, we want to get into as many activities to hire many countrymen as much as possible. A lot of people lost their job. To jumpstart the economy, we have to build things no matter the difficulty. And as consumers, prioritize products made in the Philippines. We need to hold hands and help each other out,” De Luzuriaga added. 

De Luzuriaga says that teamwork will make the dream work, “Globe myBusiness in Iloilo worked tirelessly to help us set up. When you find partners, your purpose should align. They align with Spring Valley’s aspiration, and that is to create more products and services to uplift our countrymen and their quality of life.”

The local network of the Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies or ARISE - Philippines renewed its support and commitment to creating a risk-resilient society amid the COVID-19 pandemic during its recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) on October .

The first virtual ARISE PH AGM was attended by distinguished guests from the public and private sectors in the Philippines, Geneva, and Bangkok.  They were joined by the newly elected ARISE- Philippines board of directors and over 100 CEOs and representatives from ARISE PH member companies. The organization focused on the efforts and initiatives that were done in the global, regional, and Philippine-setting, including the initiatives done by the government and the ARISE - Philippines member companies to help combat COVID-19.

The AGM was opened by a welcome message from Engr. Liza B. Silerio, Vice President of SM Supermalls and Global ARISE Board Member.

Mr. Hans Sy, Chairman of the Executive Committee, SM Prime Holdings Inc. and Co-Chair of ARISE PH, discussed the important role that the private sector plays in espousing disaster risk preparedness. “I always believe that the call for preparedness, prevention, and mitigation is at the forefront of disaster risk reduction. Our role as private sector members is to supplement public sector assistance with our expert knowledge and available resources. In doing our own DRR and forging partnership with the local and national government, we can lift the majority away from hazards of disasters,” Sy said.

In her recorded opening remarks, Mami Mizutori, the head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) and Permanent Co-chair of ARISE, further zeroed in on the importance of preparedness in a world that is growing more uncertain. She said, It is not enough to learn from the past but we must be able to do a lot of thinking into the future and planning against a variety of interconnected hazards and scenarios. Today, the world is dealing with a virus. Tomorrow, it could be something completely different. Only by bringing everyone together from all segments of the society can this be achieved. And this must include the private sector which is a key stakeholder and can contribute in many ways.”

She added, “ARISE - Philippines is a shining example of an organization whose members take disaster prevention to heart across its free oral exchange of disaster management strategies, education and training, and urban risk reduction and resilience.”

Meanwhile, Timothy Wilcox, Private Sector Focal Point, UNDRR Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (ROAP), laid down the plans that the UNDRR has to help the region in response to the pandemic. He said, “There is actually a need to assist small businesses with COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.”

The UNDRR has created tools that are geared towards supporting the MSMEs in the region. These tools include an MSMBE Business Continuity and Recovery Planning Toolkit specific for COVID-19 which has been translated into 11 languages including Filipino and Cebuano; an E-learning Course to supplement the business continuity toolkit; and, a Business Quick Risk Estimate Tool for MSMEs that will assess a bus’ resiliency against risks and disasters at the end of a survey. All of which are accessible and can be downloaded online.

  Private-public collaboration is key to a disaster-resilient nation

Defense Secretary and Chairman of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), Delfin Lorenzana, who represented the government sector, thanked ARISE – Philippines for their significant contributions in mitigating the COVID-19 crisis and said that the organization has always been a reliable partner in involving the business sector in disaster risk and preparedness.

“The collaboration between public and private institutions is a vital component to efficiently and effectively mitigate the adverse effects of the pandemic. The Filipino bayanihan spirit is very much alive and strong in the form of public and private partnership. This is the same strength and commitment we will need as we transition to what is now the new normal,” said Sec. Lorenzana.

Select members of the Board discussed the initiatives that the private sector has implemented to help businesses mitigate the risks of the pandemic. Mr. Rene “Butch” Meily, President of the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), talked about the key projects of the PDRF to assist the government in responding to the crisis, especially in providing valuable services to the healthcare workers. For the multi-stakeholder collaboration, Ms. Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga, President, National Resilience Council, shared public-private capacity-building and resiliency programs amid the COVID-19 pandemic as well as their recovery and response plans targeted to help local government units.

For businesses, Ms. Maribeth L. Marasigan, President and COO of the Aboitiz Foundation, shared the key practices of the Aboitiz Group in business recovery under the new normal. Atty. Alex B. Cabrera, Chairman and Senior Partner of PwC Philippines and Vice-Chair of ARISE - Philippines, showed some of the ways that are crucial to averting risks in the future. These future projects, including net-zero emissions by 2030, plastic neutrality, and recommendations on how to resolve the challenges brought by the informal settlers, are important to focus on in terms of disaster risk reduction.

  Organise, synergise, and harmonise

Before the AGM concluded, VAdm Alexander P. Pama AFP (ret), Co-Chair of ARISE – Philippines, summarized the key points discussed in the two-hour meeting. He also mentioned the proposed members mapping that will take the lead in focusing the four priorities of ARISE, namely: Small and Medium-sized Businesses headed by the PDRF, Investors, and Investments headed by the Aboitiz Group of Companies, (Re)-Insurance led by the Philippines Insurers and Reinsurers Association, Inc., and Resilient Infrastructure to be led by the Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers Inc (PICE). ARISE PH added another key area which is Special Projects led by PwC.

“We are fully aware that much is needed to be done. Be rest assured however that together, we shall be focused and deliberate in the planning and subsequent executions of our actions. We intend to start by organizing and strengthening our administrative and operational capabilities. Consequent to this, we shall synergize and harmonize the individual and collective strengths and value-added of our members, to relentlessly pursue our mandate and achieve our mission,” Pama concluded.

The Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies, or ARISE, is a global network of private sector entities that work globally to advance the commitments of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. It also promotes business resilience as a central factor for global sustainable development.

Mindanao is hailed for its abundant natural resources and breathtaking landscapes. But beyond its pristine beaches and lush mountains is a burgeoning community of creatives who are injecting their unique Mindanaoan identity into art and using it as a force for good. As the country continues to grapple with COVID-19, Mindanaoan artists are stepping up to create stories of hope while in isolation.

Following the theme of “HOPE IN OUR ART,” Pilipinas Shell’s 53rd National Students Art Competition (NSAC) held the second leg of Virtual Art Interact last October 17, in collaboration with creative collective Fringe Manila. Virtual Art Interact is also a platform where creatives can share their insights about their profession for the next generation. While the pilot event focused on the Luzon art scene, this recent forum put the spotlight on the growing community of creators in Mindanao.

Since NSAC’s inception, Shell has acknowledged the vital role of visual artists, illustrators, sculptors, and other imaginative talents in shaping the youth and country’s future—especially now. “Through NSAC, we pledge our support to keep artists and art institutions alive. We want to amplify the youth’s voices, and continue the conversation on art’s importance,” said Sankie Simbulan, Country Social Performance and Investment Manager of Pilipinas Shell.

Simbulan continued, “The ethnic and cultural diversity of Mindanao and its rich history have given birth to a young generation of artists whose voices need to spread and be heard throughout the Philippines.”

Andrei Pamintuan, Creative Director of Fringe Manila and host of Virtual Art Interact, added, “This is a great opportunity to share stories from Mindanao. It’s important to be inclusive, especially for platforms like this, so that we can showcase the diversity of what’s happening in the Philippines.”

Having survived many conflicts and calamities, Mindanao has proven itself to be a region of resilience—with artists at the helm of inspiring hope that propels the community forward.

Through his projects with Mindanao local governments, Zabala has been championing a fresh perspective of the region that does not let its past define its future. “At work, our goal is to recreate Mindanao’s image using art. For example, we created a campaign called ‘Zoom in Zamboanga City’ that is inspired by our rich history, nature, tourist spots, native patterns, and more,” Zabala explained.

Being no strangers to crises, Zabala and fellow Mindaoan artists immediately heeded the call to once again inspire hope and courage as COVID struck the country. He shared, “The pandemic is a challenge for everyone. People have lost jobs, families have gone hungry, and mental health is affected. As public servants and artists, our work should never stop. We have since created several campaigns that promote generosity and kindness in the community.”

Zabala, who did a live demonstration of digital illustration during the event, also discussed the many themes present in today’s art. “There are so many stories now about struggles and difficulties, both personal and in our country. As creatives, we use art to express our emotions and what we are going through.”

Zabala also pointed out one essential, if often overlooked, role that artists perform during crisis: “We also act as historians who visually piece together this moment in time—including all the contemplation and uncertainty it holds. When we look back on this period someday, art will help us make sense of it.”                                   

Isko Andrade, a former contestant and three-time winner of the NSAC, shared how he overcame the more discouraging moments during the pandemic. “COVID-19 has affected my career as an artist because of cancelled shows and exhibits, but I choose not to dwell on the negative side.

“‘The pandemic has given me time to focus on myself, my craft, and taught me to appreciate and find inspiration in everything—whether they’re big or small.”

The Bulacan-based Andrade looked back on how opportunities presented themselves to him in the middle of adversity. One such door was his win during the NSAC competition in 2014. His winning oil on canvas piece, entitled ‘ Ipinagkakait na Kalayaan ,’ was in itself an example of triumph over adversity:  this life-changing canvas depicts paintbrushes ready to be buried, and was inspired by the death of his mother and the pains that come from being part of a broken family.

He said, “As a young student artist from the province, I had simple dreams of finishing college and getting a normal job. I didn’t think I could ever win NSAC, but it was such a big help for me and my family. I was able to pursue my art, and I learned to dream bigger.”

Zabala concurred that creative platforms such as NSAC are bringers of hope that can keep communities alive during the most difficult times. He said, “Art is a great tool for healing. It’s cathartic. We can use it to give people something to hold on to as they live through the pandemic.”

Simbulan reminded the audience to remember and explore its rich heritage to mine stories for encouragement. She said, “As Filipinos, we have a wealth of culture and creativity that can act as reservoirs of hope and fuel for economic recovery. We can all learn a thing or two from artists—how to create more with less, how to discover new perspectives in the mundane, and how to find the silver lining amid this isolation..”

The next and final leg of Shell Virtual Art Interact is set to happen on November 7 and will focus on the Visayas region. Meanwhile, the awarding of the NSAC, which currently has 1,300 entries, will take place on November 27.

When the COVID-19 pandemic started affecting the country, businesses all over the country came up with ways to extend help to those who are in need. The companies’ CSR programs significantly contributed to helping health facilities and frontliners and providing food and financial assistance to affected communities.

Top business leaders in the Philippines are converging to share their experiences and learnings during the pandemic at World Vision’s two-day virtual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Summit on October 13 and 14, 2020.   World Vision’s CSR Summit entitled “Doing Good is Good Business” will talk about the value of doing Corporate Social Responsibility amid the pandemic. The speakers of the two-day online event consist of distinguished business leaders in the country.

World Vision is a Christian relief, development, and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, their families, and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. Inspired by its Christian faith and values, it is dedicated to working with the world’s most vulnerable people. It serves and collaborates with all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender.

World Vision’s CSR Summit is free for everyone and will be streamed live on World Vision Philippines YouTube channel on October 13 and 14, from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM.

The first day of the summit will showcase ways on how a business can survive by protecting its stakeholders like suppliers, partners, and employees. The speakers’ line-up includes Ms. Maribeth Marasigan of Aboitiz Foundation, Mr. Guillermo Luz of Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation, Mr. RJ Cabaluna  of Grab PH, and Mr. Carlos Barrera of Lazada E-Services Philippines Inc.

Meanwhile, the second day of the conference will talk about how CSR affects brand positioning and awareness, and how to successfully engage the employees, customers, and other stakeholders. Speakers of the second day are Norman Agatep, APR of the Public Relations Society of the Philippines (PRSP), Angela Totanes of Robinsons Supermarket Corporation, Anna Legarda-Locsin of Procter & Gamble, Louisa Mila V. Echevarria of People Management Association of the Philippines, Pamela Donato of Conduent, and Ms. Kit Sison of Willis Towers Watson.

The World Vision CSR Summit will be moderated by Ritzi Villarico-Ronquillo, APR, IABC fellow of PRSP and Aneth Lim, a board trustee of World Vision.

“Corporate social responsibility programs keep the Filipino 'bayanihan' spirit thrive, and World Vision and its partners are honored to present these in the upcoming World Vision CSR Summit. We hope that this will help the business sector and other organizations as they work for communities and the most vulnerable children especially those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Together, we will heal as one,” said Mr. Rommel Fuerte, World Vision national director.

Award-winning mobile application Free Bee, which is powered by technology services provider PLDT Global Corporation, is launching an online video series for overseas Filipinos to help them stay informed, entertained, and healthy amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Entitled Rated Global Pinoy , this hour-long lifestyle online talk show will feature topics that are close to the hearts of Filipinos around the world. 

“This online campaign is meant to make our kababayans feel that they are not alone. We are going beyond connectivity to creating a venue where we can help Filipinos worldwide find ways to support their emotional needs while they are in a long-distance setup,” said Albert V. Villa-Real, chief commercial officer at PLDT Global.

“Through these video series, we hope to deliver meaningful content that hopefully will make our OFWs feel closer to home,” he added.

Free Bee also aims to strengthen the connection of OFWs with their loved ones back home by enabling longer, ad-free calls in key migrant destinations such as the United States, Canada, India, South Korea, among others, at affordable rates.

This premium, reliable, and affordable call plans are tailored to suit the needs of Filipinos with families living or working abroad and help them maintain strong family ties.

Launched in 2017, Free Bee has also partnered with other companies and organizations all over the world to provide services such as Smart, TNT, and Sun load top-ups, online bills payment, application for insurance and loan products, and lifestyle guides for Filipinos overseas.

Kalaro a digital esports platform, will be launching on October 12, 2020. It will be Asia’s fist fully-integrated end-to-end Esports online platform that was created by an internationally-experienced team of Filipino tech experts. Inc. officially announced also its alliances from top corporate brands namely National Computer Systems (NCS) of Singapore, ERNI from Switzerland, and local companies Union Bank of the Philippines, DragonPay, GCash and Globe Labs.

On its launch in October, the nationwide online sign-up will be made available to esports fans and players. Interested gamers can join Kalaro using their mobile number, Facebook, Twitch, Razer, or Google accounts.

 “We are thrilled to finally unveil Kalaro to be the catalyst in rapidly developing world-class Filipino esports talents. With the incredible support we are getting from our partners and the gaming community, we’re excited to realize the synergy Kalaro will create among corporate brands and more than 30+ million Esports enthusiasts in the Philippines,” said Renalyn B. David, board of directors member of Inc./ Pnex Int’l Corporation.

NCS handles the technology cloud infrastructure to ensure that Kalaro is globally available to all Filipinos 24/7. They also handle the various integration requirements of Kalaro so that it can connect online to all other apps like Facebook, GCash, DragonPay, Twitch, and other 3rd-party systems.

On the other hand, ERNI is responsible for the design of the User Interface (UI) and overall User Experience (UX); translating these designs into actual working systems for Kalaro users to enjoy. Together with the in-house tech experts of, Kalaro has achieved the global standards in software (app) design and development.

“Kalaro was able to capture the aspirations of all the eSports stakeholders and present it in a creatively designed User Interface (UI) which results in a fun, easy to use and with a comprehensive set of features fitting to the demands of tech-savvy millennials and Gen Zs,” said David Nithyananthan, co-founder of Inc./Pnex Int’l Corporation.

The digital platform also paves the way for corporate brands to collaborate with Kalaro's stakeholders. They can have storefronts inside Kalaro to enable them to promote and sell their products online to Kalaro users. Brands can also sponsor gamers, streamers, teams and leagues. Kalaro members can electronically transact 24/7 anywhere around the globe. This e-wallet feature of Kalaro is powered by Union Bank of the Philippines, DragonPay, GCash, and Globe Labs.

On its launch in October, the nationwide online sign-up will be made available to Esports fans and players. Interested gamers can join Kalaro using their mobile number, Facebook, Twitch, Razer, or Google accounts.

“We at Pnex Int’l Corporation are both proud and excited to launch our Esports platform, initially, to the Filipino gaming community. The more than 30 million Filipino gamers are a huge market and Kalaro will surely be their gaming companion. Our team has done an incredible job in creating a world-class product we Filipinos can all be very proud of,” said Marvin Alberto, president of Pnex Int’l Corporation.

The timeliness of Kalaro seems to be in perfect alignment with the need to boost the Philippine economy. Kalaro can mobilize the 30+ million Filipinos gamers market for some economic activities which would give jobs to corporate brands who will focus on this market segment, create work-from-home opportunities for streamers & gamers, spark some consumer spending and at the same time hone future esports world champions.

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