Friday, June 26, 2015

Scholarship Portal Wins Startup Weekend Cebu Idea Competition

Being a recipient of several scholarship grants from grade school to post-graduate degree, 25-year old computer engineer Kerwin Jorbina also wanted to make it easier for other underprivileged but deserving young Filipinos to get an education.

Thus, Jorbina came out with the idea of an online portal called “Scholar’s Field” that will provide students with the necessary information on scholarship grants from schools and different private and government organizations, and allow them to submit multiple applications minus the tedious task of going through various websites to do so.

Interested students need only to sign up to Scholar’s Field and enter personal details such as grades and family income, among other pertinent data, and through an algorithm, students can be matched to available scholarships which they can immediately apply for without leaving the portal.

“I was a scholar my entire life because my father died when I was seven years old. I’m the youngest in a brood of three but the eldest was prioritized so that he can help later on. It was instilled in me that I have to work and study hard to get a scholarship,” the magna cum laude graduate said.

He added:  “Recently, I went looking for a post-graduate scholarship but every time I applied for one, I had to input the same information.  I realized that it was taking too much time because the forms are long.  Also, I have to go to several websites to find the scholarships I’m qualified for.  There’s no one portal for all of that. There would be some that provide links but then, no application processes can be done immediately. So I thought, why not give students more options but in a one-stop shop portal.”

Scholar’s Field bested 14 other groups at Startup Weekend Cebu 5 (SWC5), which was participated in by 127 developers, designers, marketers, and technopreneurs.  Other members of the team are Geraldine Granada, Arnel Saquilabon, Inaki Paday, Garik Tate, Le-an Lacaba, John Bhattrai, and Jan Gazo.

In second place was SpendCheck, a mobile app that aims to help micro-business owners spend wisely while third place went to TeeVee, a t-shirt vending machine for special events.

“Kickstart sees the Philippine startup ecosystem still in the beginning stages so there is much room for learning and growth. We support Startup Weekend Cebu because it’s a great ‘starter’ for people who want to build and test their ideas in just 54 hours. From the ideas that come out of SWC5, some will be pursued, most will not but the key thing is another crop of participants has been exposed to a different way of becoming an entrepreneur. You don’t need an MBA to get started,” said Pia Angeli Bernal, Social Impact Investments Manager of Kickstart Ventures, Inc.
 Kickstart, a wholly-owned venture capital firm of the country’s number one mobile brand Globe Telecom, continues to support SWE Cebu since its first run in May 2012.

Another SWE Cebu supporter is  Globe Telecom’s developer community arm, Globe Labs which also provided Application Programming Interface (API) credits to the winners to help them further develop their ideas, with Scholar’s Field receiving 15,000; SpendCheck, 10,000, and TeeVee, 5,000.  The API credits are valid for use until December 31, 2015

Judges for this year’s activity are:  RJ David, Co-Founder and Managing Director at (; Melanie Ng, Executive Vice-President, Ng Khai Dev. Corp. / Managing Director, Premium; Mark Buenconsejo, Co-Founder, Caresharing; Wesley Chiongbian, Founder & CEO, Mynimo; James Cruz, Managing Director - International at Fountainhead Technologies; Rhett Jones; CEO, Synacy / CEO, Monopond; Victor Caindec, Head of Sales – South & Member, Country Executive Management Team HILTI Philippines; and Alex Alabiso, Head of Portfolio Development, Kickstart Ventures.

Startup Weekend is a Seattle-based global grassroots movement where people come together to share ideas, form teams, build products, and launch startup businesses. It is an intense 54-hour event focused on building web or mobile applications over the course of a weekend, which later could form the basis of a credible business.

Startup Weekends are specifically designed for entrepreneurs interested in receiving feedback for an idea, looking for a co-founder, or who want to learn a new skill, especially in the field of mobile and internet applications. The concept quickly became a global movement to generate breakthrough ideas in communities all over the world, taking digital start-ups businesses from ideas to investment readiness through intensive mentoring from industry experts and access to mobile markets and investors.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

AirAsia launches Airbus Smarter Fleet Electronic Flight Folder

PARIS, 17 JUNE 2015 - AirAsia has become the launch customer for the latest Airbus “Smarter Fleet” electronic Flight Folder (eFF), following the signature of an agreement at the Paris Air Show today. The signature was witnessed by Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia.

eFF is a comprehensive software application that allows pilots to access their briefing package on-board the aircraft, or from home, the hotel, or the crew briefing room. The software also offers enhanced capabilities to manage electronic forms such as the post flight journey log and air safety reports. It is interconnected with the airline environment delivering briefing packages and automatically archiving data.

“At AirAsia we place great importance in making sure that our crew are equipped with the latest applications and an optimised working environment,” said Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia. “With the latest solutions being offered by Airbus, we can reduce paper in the cockpit, enhance overall efficiency and ensure that we maintain the very highest standards of safety and operational excellence.”

“We are pleased to launch our latest innovation with AirAsia,” said Didier Lux, Head of Customer Services, Airbus. “As one of our largest customers, AirAsia continuously demonstrates its commitment to ensure the most efficient and reliable flight operations and today the airline once again leads the way in working towards a truly Smarter Fleet.”

The new eFF application can be combined with a whole suite of Smarter Fleet solutions to optimize end-to-end operations. For instance, with the Maintenance Mobility module, maintenance personnel will be provided with timely information including documentation, work packages, and critical aircraft technical data, harnessing the benefits of mobile technology.

The AirAsia Group is one of Airbus’ largest customers worldwide and has now placed orders for a total of 571 Aircraft. These include 475 A320 Family aircraft for the pan-Asian short haul fleet, plus 96 widebodies (86 A330s and 10 A350 XWBs) for operation by long haul affiliate AirAsia X.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Globe Telecom Beefs Up Content Partnership Portfolio With Collaboration With Zalora Philippines

Globe Telecom remains the preferred partner of the world’s biggest content brands with its partnership with Zalora Philippines, further growing the e-commerce industry in the country.

With the collaboration, customers get easy and hassle-free access to the online shopping portal across mobile devices to fully empower the Filipino digital lifestyle experience with the Shopping Bundle, available to mobile and Tattoo postpaid customers for only P299 a month.

Zalora recently opened its first digital pop-up store in the country at the EDSA Shangri-la Mall, where all transactions will be done online using tablets, phones and laptops that will be displayed throughout the space.

As an exclusive offer, Globe customers can enjoy a 20% discount for purchases at the pop-up store.

Globe Telecom Beefs Up Content Partnership Portfolio With Collaboration With Zalora Philippines

Present during the launch of the store were (L-R) Samsung Philippines Head of Content and Services Cris Concepcion, ZALORA Philippines CEO & Co-Founder Paulo Campos III, Globe President and CEO Ernest Cu, ZALORA Philippines Managing Director Constantin Robertz, Globe Senior Advisor for Consumer Business Dan Horan, and Samsung Philippines Head of Accessories Erik Sulit.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Foundations Hold Math Olympics For Pasil Kids

The Arcanys Early Learning Foundation and the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI)-Dolores Aboitiz Children's Fund conducted a Math Olympics for beneficiaries of their "District Transformation Through Parent Coaching" project last May 13 and 15, benefiting children and parents of Barangay Pasil, Cebu City.

Under the program, Arcanys teachers went house-to-house to teach children Math skills, specifically rote counting, number recognition, object identification, numerical magnitude, missing number and simple addition.

The teachers also made the parents participate by letting them help teaching their children.  The parents were made to interact with their children while the teacher observed their behaviors.  This way, the parents realized that they, too, have the responsibility in teaching their children instead of just making their kids go off to school and leaving the responsibility to the teachers.

RAFI-DACF Grants Officer Jan Montilla said that through the project, the parents likewise learned to monitor their children's progress in school.

"This project aims to teach young children with early mathematical skills that are proven by research to contribute to cognitive development and personal success in life. It also aims to teach and develop parents' ability to teach their children and gain positive parents skill,” she said.

Montilla said the project was also an opportunity for parents to gain something, as Arcanys and RAFI held Parenting Education Session for them to learn how to teach their children correctly.

After months of being taught by Arcany’s teachers, the pupils and their parents showed what they learned through a Math Olympics at the Pasil Gym, where they also participated in the fun games and activities.

Supervised by a teacher, a Pasil, Cebu City child ponders over the answer during a number identification game in the Math Olympics.

Parents who participated in the Math Olympics also have their roles during the games

Monday, June 22, 2015

AirAsia named Asia & World’s Best Low Cost Airline for 7th Consecutive Year

PARIS, 16 JUNE 2015 - AirAsia has been named the World’s Best Low Cost Airline and Asia's Best Low Cost Airlinefor the seventh consecutive year at the Skytrax World’s Airline Awards held at the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget.

Skytrax is the global benchmark of airline excellence and one of the most prestigious accolades for the airline industry with 19 million customer surveys completed worldwide by over 160 nationalities, measuring standards across 41 key performance indicators of an airline’s front-line products and services.

Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia was present to receive the awards at the Paris Air Show 2015 along with CEOs from the AirAsia Group.

Tan Sri Tony Fernandes said, “We faced many challenges this past year but I am proud to say that our staff banded together for our guests and we have emerged stronger than ever. To be named the ‘World’s Best’ for the seventh consecutive year is an incredible honour, and I dedicate it to the 17,000 AirAsia Allstars who are the force behind it all.”

“We would also like to thank our guests and stakeholders for continuing to believe in us. We are committed to continue innovating on all fronts to provide our guests with not only the best value but also a superior travel experience and convenience using technology,” added Tony Fernandes.

AirAsia named Asia and World’s Best Low Cost Airline for 7th Consecutive Year

(L-R) : Sunu Widyatmoko, CEO of AirAsia Indonesia; Mittu Chandilya, CEO of AirAsia India; Tassapon Bijleveld, CEO of Thai AirAsia; Tan Sri Rafidah, Chairman of AirAsia X Berhad; Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia;  Aireen Omar, CEO of AirAsia Berhad ; Joy Caneba, CEO of AirAsia Philippines; Benyamin Ismail, Acting CEO of AirAsia X Berhad.

Also commenting on the recognition by Skytrax to AirAsia Group, Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, Executive Chairman of AirAsia Berhad said, “This recognition as Asia’s and the World’s Best reinforces the efforts that the Group is taking to strengthen our services and our network, and we will take every effort to live up to this recognition.”

The AirAsia Group consists of short-haul low-cost airlines AirAsia Berhad (airline code AK), Indonesia AirAsia (airline code QZ), Thai AirAsia (airline code FD), Philippines’ AirAsia (airline codes PQ & Z2) and AirAsia India (airline code I5).

Throughout its existence, AirAsia Group have established themselves as market leaders and innovators in travel and technology, offering not just flights but a wholesome travel experience with the introduction of the mobile app, interactive travel guides, full scale self-service options, WiFi on-board, premium coffee via Barista-In-The-Sky and much more lined up, such as online Duty Free shopping before schedule departure flights.

All airline affiliates in the AirAsia Group operate one of the youngest fleet of Airbus A320 in the world, with an average age of only 3 years group wide; with firm orders of 475 Airbus A320 aircraft and deliveries up till 2028.

In addition to the modern fleet, AirAsia offers consumer-friendly products and services complemented with everyday low fares, extensive route network, including over 60 unique routes in the Asean region and unmatched flight frequencies; along with convenient booking and payment channels; and value added services such as Fly-Thru, Premium Flex and much more.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Haier is Chillin’ Summer until June 30

Mild drizzles and overcast skies have frequently been making appearances lately, signalling that summer is winding down; but don’t put away your sunscreen and beach hats just yet because the sun keeps shining over at Haier, with its Chillin’ Summer Promo. Make the rest of your summer count by making Haier a part of it, and let the summer fun continue!

Choose to buy a Haier or Sanyo appliance from specially selected items and score a cool freebie to take home for free! Each purchase has a corresponding freebie that you and your family can enjoy and even take on your pahabol summer vacations.  So head on to the leading appliance stores near you and start enjoying some hot home appliances, and the free gifts that come with them.

For every 32-inch or any bigger size LED TV you get the chance to choose between a 5400 MAH power bank that’s surely useful for long drives to the beach, and a wall bracket for that new screen of yours.

Wanna chill? Then get a Haier or Sanyo refrigerator! Whether it’s a single door or a two-door you’re eyeing, the choice is yours between a free Rubbermaid Food Keeper + 3 Sports Bottle or a Rubbermaid Food Keeper + 1 Chug Bottle + Slotted Spoon. If you’d rather get a 1/3 gallon Coleman Cooler Water Jug or a Sanyo pressure cooker, then buy a 2-door no-frost refrigerator instead.

A window type air conditioner (AC) can get you free AC brackets while a split type will come with a 1/3 gallon Cooler Water Jug from Coleman or a P3,000 Installation Subsidy.

Get a 500g Surf Blossom Fresh w/ Fabcon Detergent when you buy a single tub washing machine. Make it a twin tub and score a Rubbermaid Food Keeper + 3 Sports Bottle or Rubbermaid Food Keeper + 1 Chug Bottle + Slotted Spoon.

Beat the heat with a free air cooler when you purchase a front load washing machine, and a Sanyo pressure cooker when you buy a Fully Automatic Washing Machine or a washing machine dryer. What could be a cooler deal than that!

To avail of your freebies, just present a proof of purchase from the same store where you bought your items (except for the P3,000 subsidy for the wall-mounted air conditioning system, for which you will be referred to call the Haier hotline), within 60 days of your purchase.

Find out more about this promo and other cool products, visit and like Haier Philippines’s Facebook page or call the Haier hotline at 1-800-8-9999999 for Globe subscribers, 1-800-10-9999999 for PLDT subscribers, or get in touch with the customer care center at (02) 883-9999.

About Haier
Haier is a leading first-class brand of innovative home appliance products and services that creates value for consumers beyond their expectations.  Haier is about inspiring Filipino homes to live life in a higher standard with more energy-efficient, user-friendly and environment-friendly home appliances – ‘Smarter Life, Better Planet’.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Art Attack!: A Sneaker Outreach Project Caring Cup by The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf x Converse

Maayong Adlaw, Cebu!

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf®, thru its Caring Cup program, will be coming to Cebu for a Sneaker Outreach Project in partnership with Converse and Mercy in Action Foundation.

The event, called Art Attack!, will be held on June 27 (Sat) from 10AM-12NN in Talisay, Cebu. Experience designing Converse sneakers that the rescued street children of Mercy in Action can use to school! Add to that food, games, and laughter and you’re sure to have a memorable and fulfilling day!

They are looking for 30 volunteers who can help out during the day. To score an exclusive invite, simply follow the mechanics on the poster.

Don’t know how to travel to Talisay, Cebu? No worries, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf® will be providing transportation from Ayala Terraces Cebu. May you be the reason behind the children’s smiles! See you there!


To stay updated with The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf®’s events, follow their official pages.
Instagram and Twitter: @cbtlph @brewph
Website: /

Globe Telecom Sets Standard In PR Practice In Asia, Gets Shortlisted In PRWeek Awards Asia 2015

Globe Telecom has once again raised the bar in the practice of public relations (PR) in Asia after being one of the only two companies in the country and the only Philippine telco shortlisted in this year’s PRWeek Awards Asia.

“We are honored to join the ranks of companies and PR agencies across Asia and be recognized for our communication programs and practitioners that have catapulted Globe to be the preferred brand of choice for consumers today,” said Yoly Crisanto, Senior Vice President for Corporate Communications at Globe.

Globe has received four (4) finalist citations from the highly-prestigious award-giving body that recognizes cutting-edge PR programs and practitioners across Asia. Now on its 14th year, the PRWeek Awards Asia 2015 is once again setting out to celebrate the most inspired and successful campaigns, companies and individuals in the region’s communications industry that have been transforming businesses and brands.

For this year, Globe Telecom is shortlisted in the following categories: Crisis or Issues Management Campaign of the Year for GoSURF Consumable Data Plans, Sports Campaign of the Year for Globe Slipstream, Environmental Campaign of the Year for Project 1 Phone and Young PR Professional of the Year – In House for Brand PR lead Edward Joseph “EJ” Francisco.

Consumable mobile data plan GoSURF was launched to give customers a more seamless and better mobile browsing experience. GoSURF was a proactive service offered to customers who are shifting from an unlimited data plan to a consumable data plan to experience faster and more consistent internet speeds. The campaign also taught customers responsible data usage and monitoring and used digital materials to shape public perception about global trends showcasing how global telecom companies are regulating excess use with a consumable data plan.

Meanwhile, Globe Slipstream became a platform to promote Formula One racing in the Philippines and increase awareness of Filipinos towards the sport using junior F1 driver Marlon Stockinger as face of the campaign. Globe Slipstream not only brought F1 to the consciousness of Filipinos but was also used to demonstrate the speed of its world-class network. Globe Slipstream brought the excitement and exhilaration of a real F1 race to Filipinos with a grand scale event that saw the company transforming a portion of Bonifacio Global City to a racing venue a la F1 Grand Prix with a car parade, outdoor concert, and driving exhibition.

On the other hand, Globe embarked on an ambitious mobile recycling program dubbed as Project 1 Phone designed to create awareness on proper e-waste disposal, promote sustainability, and contribute to environmental preservation. Globe expands its footprint on the advocacy by opening up the program into a full communications campaign backed by three important changes – expanding collection base to e-wastes beyond mobile phones, strategic engagement with Globe enterprise clients, and a relevant beneficiary that supports nation-building.

Capping the list of the company’s finalist citations to the PR Week Awards Asia is 29-year old EJ Francisco vying for the Young PR Professional of the Year – In House Award, the only Filipino nominated in the category.  As the company’s Brand PR lead, he is in-charge of setting overall brand and product PR strategy as well as the integration of various PR executions in print, broadcast, and digital channels across the company's core business segments which include mobile, broadband, business, and value-added services.  He is a seasoned communications and public relations professional with a decade of experience in the publishing, banking, and telecom industries.

Leading professionals from in-house ranks as well as senior agency executives were tapped to serve as judges to ensure that entries are reviewed according to the demanding set of criteria. Awarding of winners will be held at JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong on June 18, 2015.

Last year, Globe Telecom won a Certificate Excellence for Bangon Pinoy under the Crisis, an integrated disaster response program that allows devastated communities to benefit from relief operations, free Globe services, and immediate network restoration efforts.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Learn How To Be Your Best Self At Work With This Year’S Hedgren Style Clinic In SM City Cebu

Based in Antwerp, Belgium, Hedgren was created by well-known Belgian designer, Xavier Kegels back in 1993, showing over 20 years of heritage. The brand’s product collections consist of handbags, shoulder bags, backpacks and business bags for male and female, and eventually expanded throughout Europe, ASIA, and the US.

As its target market remains to be the urban professionals, Hedgren has come up with a highly-successful Style Clinic series, which aim to help these professionals develop not just a better sense of style but a better sense of self through informative and highly-engaging programs as well.

For this year’s Style Clinic, which will be held on June 25, 2015, at The Northwing of SM City Cebu, participants will be treated to a two-hour productivity talk facilitated by beauty queen, model, and certified image consultant Abbygale Arenas De Leon.

This training program will cover various personality development concerns simplified through the acronym, POWER – Perfect Smile, Open Stance, Warm Body Language, Excellent Appearance, and Revamp Outfit of the Day. Hedgren is proud to give participants practical advice that will definitely help them to look and act appropriately at work.

Learn How To Be Your Best Self At Work With This Year’S Hedgren Style Clinic In SM City Cebu

Aside from discussing the Power of Image, De Leon will also have a special talk on the different types of Hedgren bags that are appropriate for every need and occasion.

In addition to the Style Clinic platform, as a follow through, Hedgren will be awarding a Style Ambassador, a top performer who exemplifies Style in their work place through physical and social aspects and is also excellent at work.

The Brand
Born and bred in the hub of innovative fashion that is Antwerp, Hedgren maintains its roots in a vibrant Belgian design scene. Established in 1993, over the last 20 years the Hedgren brand has perfected the craft of making long-lasting bags with a focus on functionality. Designed with both men and women in mind, these are unisex accessories built to withstand the rigors of daily life – for the busy commuter as for the seasoned traveler. Our timeless designs embody the energy of the city with clever features, stylish structures and a casual European flair.

AirAsia X Recognized With World’S Best Low Cost Airline Premium Cabin and Premium Seat For 3rd Consecutive Year

PARIS, 16 JUNE 2015 – AirAsia X, the long haul affiliate of the AirAsia Group has been named the ‘World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Cabin’ and ‘Best Low Cost Airline Premium Seat’ for the third consecutive year.

Tan Sri Rafidah, Chairman of AirAsia X Berhad and Benyamin Ismail, acting CEO of AirAsia X Berhad were present to receive the awards at the Skytrax World’s Airline Awards held at the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget.

Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, the Group CEO of AirAsia X said, “We are thrilled to know that our guests have been enjoying the AirAsia X Premium Flatbed seats and we will work to further enhance our guests’ comfort and maintain our position as the best premium class cabin & seats in the low-cost airline category.”

Both the AirAsia and AirAsia X Group have carried nearly 300 million guests since their inception. AirAsia was established in 2001, and AirAsia X started off in 2007.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes with Joy Caneba, CEO of AirAsia Philippines
AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes with Joy Caneba, CEO of AirAsia Philippines. 

In 2014, the AirAsia X Group has expanded with the establishment of Thai AirAsia X (airline code XJ) and Indonesia AirAsia Extra (airline code XT), apart from the Malaysian-based AirAsia X Berhad (airline code D7).

The AirAsia X Group operates 26 Airbus A330s with an average age of 5 years and has a firm order of 55 Airbus A330neos with first delivery to begin in 2018.

The AirAsia X Premium Flatbeds feature universal power sockets, adjustable headrests and built-in personal utilities such as tray table, drink holder, reading light and privacy screen. Premium Flatbed guests also enjoy premium complimentary products and services including Pick A Seat, Priority Check-in, Priority Boarding, Priority Baggage, 40kg Baggage Allowance, Complimentary Meal and Pillow & Duvet.

Stay updated with AirAsia and AirAsia X’s activities via Facebook ( and Twitter (

Friday, June 12, 2015

Voyager Innovations Designs PH Workplace Of The Future

If you step into the office of Voyager Innovations. in Ortigas, you could easily think you are in the heart of Silicon Valley. This effect is intentional. The workplace was designed to put employees in the frame of mind they need to envision, create, and innovate, which is all based on best practices set by some of the most renowned tech companies in the valley, such as Google and Facebook.

Voyager Innovations, a subsidiary of Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart), is the digital arm of PLDT, so it’s imperative for the unit to exist and thrive on the cutting edge of technology.

An open floorplan

To facilitate collaboration, the floorplan is completely open. There is not a single office room - even the executives have only a cubicle, whose walls are deliberately kept low. Managers sit with their team members. There are ping pong tables, multiple lounge areas, and wall art. Many employees avail of the waveboards scattered around the office to travel from one end to the other.

Employees appreciate the outlets they have for relaxation.

“Some employers might think that entertainment options like our X-Box will be a distraction, but it’s always the opposite. When I’m a bit tired, I take a breather and play table-tennis or X-Box. Then when I resume work, I am recharged and ready to rock. I end up being more productive compared to if I had just forced myself to work straight,” said Dennis Macaspac, the product manager of Talk2.

The decorations for the office also have a purpose behind them. Meeting rooms, for instance, are designed and decorated after a particular theme, each coming from the name of a Filipino invention or inventor. The support beams are adorned with framed objects that employees have donated, so as to give the place a feeling of familiarity and home.

The Voyager Innovation team has had an active role in building the entire workplace. The statue in the lobby, which was fashioned from scrap metal, was even designed by Benjie Fernandez, the managing director of Voyager Innovations. He believes that tech companies, particularly those in the Philippines, do not give enough attention to the workspace and how it can affect morale and productivity.

“Most people in the tech space want to talk about things like growth or funding, but neglect the fact that these things are made possible by the environment in which we work. You need to have a workspace that inspires you. At Voyager, we’re continually iterating and improving on our office, much in the same way we do with our digital apps and platforms,” Fernandez said.

This is not just talk - significant thought goes into every detail of the office, no matter how small. As an example, user experience experts from the product team designed all of the walls, including a freedom wall, where employees are free to write whatever they want, and a photo wall, where some of Voyager’s most significant milestones are documented.

The effect of these details is not lost on employees.

“Coming from more traditional workplaces, where it seems like they’re trying to squeeze in as many people as possible, the Voyager office is a refreshing change of pace. I can design from the comfort of a couch or a workstation or a group table. Because the office allows me to be mobile and move around as I like, I feel more energized and creative,” said Monnik Togle, a graphic designer at Voyager Innovations.

Silicon Valley-style perks  

Voyager Innovations does not just stop at the physical environment. The people team also makes it a point to have perks and policies that empower all employees. Breakfast and fruit are served daily. All employees are on flexitime. The dress code is casual. There are quarterly celebrations of Voyager milestones, and more frequent gatherings called iShare in which employees share their passions.

All employees, including executives and managers, take economy when flying to international conferences and meetings. This allows more people to travel per year for training, which is highly encouraged. When they return home to Voyager, they then share their learnings with their team members in a cascade.

“Voyager has a global vision, so it wants you to learn from the best. While we do attend some local conferences and events, the company places a big emphasis on going abroad to learn from world class experts. Just this month, I got to travel to New York to attend a content marketing summit featuring some of the best content marketers in the business,” said Nigel Maranan, who handles content marketing and public relations for SafeZone, a platform that provides free data service to the best mobile apps and platforms in the world.

One of the cooler employee policies is borrowed from Google’s playbook. All full-time employees get what is called 10% time. For 10% of their work-time, which would be 4 hours a week or a half day of one full workday, employees take on special projects outside of their core responsibilities that they feel are important to do.

Maranan, for instance, spearheaded the development of the main Voyager website, taking charge of its creative direction and overall messaging. He also created and institutionalized Voyager’s internship program, so that it can better meet the needs of students looking to gain work experience in an ever-shifting digital landscape.

“It’s easy to assume that special projects have no relation to your core work, but they really do. Every time I’ve done something with my 10% time, I’ve found that it revitalizes my core work as a content marketer. I get to see the bigger picture of what Voyager is trying to accomplish in the Philippines and practice new skills to see to it that we reach it,” said Maranan.

Undisputable results

The effort it took to develop the workplace and culture of Voyager Innovations is clearly paying off. The accelerator has improved the time to market for all its assets, reducing the industry average time of video asset creation from two months to one week and leave behind marketing collaterals from two months to one week.

Most impressively, Voyager Innovations launches websites in as little as two weeks, which is down from the industry average time of three months. These are not throwaways, either. The company has produced websites, platforms, and apps that are already shining in their respective spaces.

To highlight just a few examples, SafeZone, which provides free data access to mobile subscribers, is now the fourth most frequented mobile website in the Philippines and the number one community site. Online store creator TackThis has more than 30,000 merchants across Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka.

Takatack is the largest online ecommerce store in the Philippines, clocking it well over 100,000 SKUs. Smart Padala generated more than 80 billion pesos in annual remittances, making it the number one domestic remittance provider. Soon-to-launch fin-tech platform PayMaya holds the distinction of being the first non-bank in Asia to be awarded a Visa issuing and acquiring principal license.

“Would we have reached these milestones without the office being the way it is? Undoubtedly, yes. But we would not have been able to do it as fast, nor as resource efficient, without our workplace and culture being designed the way it is. Our work environment allows us to focus on the only thing that matters: execution,” said Fernandez.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

EMC Building Centers for Typhoon Yolanda Victims in the Philippines

The project will help local communities to rebuild their lives through a series of education, protection, emergency and volunteer programs

EMC hosted the groundbreaking ceremony of the first Center of Hope at the National Housing Authority Relocation Site in Brgy. Cabalawan, Tacloban City, Philippines. This project is part of EMC’s global social responsibility initiatives which aims to strengthen societies and help shape the future of local communities. EMC plans to open three Centers of Hope in the Philippines in Tacloban, Ormoc and Daabantayan in Cebu by the end of 2015. The total cost of the project is 9 million Philippines pesos, raised through private and company donations.

Established at the heart of Tacloban City, the construction of the first center is expected to be finalized in the last quarter of 2015. The 230 sq m facility features a daycare center, two rooms designed for accommodating different livelihood recovery activities, trainings, computer and library rooms, and a receiving area. The centers will provide various services, including education, protection, emergency and volunteer programs for the development and transformation of the local community.

“The EMC Centers of Hope is a very important project for EMC with which we hope to bring together staff, donors, and volunteers to provide first class assistance to the survivors of typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), especially those who belong to extreme poverty”, says Ronnie Latinazo, Country Manager of EMC Philippines. “EMC is committed to giving back to the local community and through these continued efforts, we hope to play in rebuilding people’s lives in the areas affected the most by typhoons,” added Ronnie Latinazo.

”Over the last year, 333,750 typhoon survivors have received assistance. Our partnership with EMC will further help our community to rebuild their lives after a natural disaster. We value our partnership with them and together hope to continue providing support to the community,” says Jun Velasco, HOPE worldwide Philippines.

The three centers will employ 157 people in the next two years. The main programs of the centers include: livelihood recovery, education, health, protection advocacy, emergency, and volunteerism. Implementation of the livelihood program has kicked off  in Tacloban. More than 80 mothers whose husband is a fisherman or farmer, together with the help from the HOPE Disaster Recovery Fund, started a fish drying and fish souse making project. The same strategy will be implemented in other Centers of Hope in the Visayas region.

Child Sponsorship Program
Under the Child Sponsorship Program child survivors will be provided meal allowance and school sponsorship, so that they can continue their education. Facilities that will be made available to these children include the computer laboratory, library and tutorial services.

Health Program
The daycare program will cater to children aged four to five and will focus on basic literacy, health and protection needs. Beneficiaries of this project are children from poor families, affected by the typhoon Yolanda.

Other Programs
The four other programs managed by the Centers of Hope are protection, advocacy, emergency, and volunteerism.

Under the protection program, children in need of special protection, case management, and recovery services will be referred to network institutions in their respective area.

The advocacy program will include education and training on prevention of child abuse, child rights advocacy, and collaboration and strengthening of Barangay and school protection system.

When disaster arises, the center will be a venue for emergency relief, protection, and shelter for those in need. The services provided by the center include: emergency relief, protection, feeding, logistics, psychological support, shelter kits and specially designed spaces for kids.

Interested volunteers can participate in the program to provide staff support, program support, technical support, spiritual support, and funding for the Centers of Hope.

About EMC
EMC Corporation is a global leader in enabling businesses and service providers to transform their operations and deliver IT as a service. Fundamental to this transformation is cloud computing.

Through innovative products and services, EMC accelerates the journey to cloud computing, helping IT departments to store, manage, protect and analyze their most valuable asset — information — in a more agile, trusted and cost-efficient way. Additional information about EMC can be found at

About the Hope worldwide Philippines
HOPE worldwide Philippines is a non-profit, non-government, faith-based charity that has been caring for needy children and youth since 1993. The organization is licensed, registered, and accredited by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Philippine Council for NGO Certification (PCNC), and National Council for Social Development (NCSD). HOPE, in partnership with many government and non-government organizations, currently implements a system of child welfare and protection system through its community and center-based programs in the largest urban poor communities within Metro Manila and the Visayas Region, residential and treatment facility for abused children in Laguna, mobile advocacy programs throughout the National Capital Region, Calabarzon, and the Visayas Region, and Disaster Risk Reduction and Emergency Response in communities affected by current calamities all over the archipelago.

HOPE worldwide Philippines'comprehensive system of child welfare touches over 100,000 poor children, youth and families annually and maintains for them a sustained safety net while tackling long-term problems that perpetuate child emergencies, poverty and abuse.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Bosch Philippines Delivers Last Three School Structures In Leyte

June 1, 2015, Leyte, Philippines – As it celebrates its 20th year in the Philippines, Bosch announced today that it has completed the construction of school structures in Leyte that were damaged by Typhoon Yolanda. Under its Tindog Pilipinas initiative, Bosch turned over the newly-constructed Math and Science Center to the Alang-Alang National High School and a computer laboratory to the Alang-alang Agro-Industrial School. The two facilities were officially inaugurated by Bosch Philippines‘managing director Andrew Powell, Alang-alang Mayor Loreto Yu and the Board Member of the Province of Leyte, Bob Abellanosa. A third site, the Tanauan II Central School will also be opening its newly-built Industrial Center by the end of the month.

Now that reconstruction projects have been completed, sites built by Tindog Pilipinas will be able to accommodate about 4,000 schoolchildren in Central and Eastern Visayas.

“Seeing the renewed hope of the school administrators and students as a result of the Tindog Pilipinas initiative makes me extremely proud to bepart of a company that is both commercially-driven, and socially-aware,” said Andrew Powell. “Bosch is a strong advocate of education; and as a leader in technology innovation, we are committed to be a partner of these beneficiary schools not just in constructing their facilities but also in building a strong nation of innovators.”

Bosch Philippines Managing Director Andrew Powell (extreme left) receives a plaque of appreciation from (left to right) Alangalang National High School Principal II Ofelia Alcober, Alangalang City Mayor Loreto Yu, Department of Education Superintendent Ronelo Firmo and Board Member of the Province of Leyte Bob Abellanosa.

The rehabilitation efforts were mobilized with the help of Habitat for Humanity. According to Habitat for Humanity Chief Operating Officer, Tots Escalada, “Rebuilding the schools in affected sites was imperative in giving its residents a chance to prosper once more. As we turn-over these new facilities to the school administrators and students, we hope to equip the with the tools and opportunity to create a brighter future for their communities.”

Bosch innovations such as its power tools enabled construction to proceed faster at higher levels of accuracy to produce superior output. By establishing a tie-up with Hansgrohe SE, Tindog Pilipinas also had the advantage of Hansgrohe basin mixers, which resolved the sanitation concern in all rebuild locations in Northern Cebu and Leyte.

Apart from the two school rebuilding projects in Leyte, Tindog Pilipinas also completed the construction of a two-classroom building in Purgason Primary School, as well as a library for the Looc Primary School, both in Daanbantayan province in Cebu.

Students of Alangalang Agro-Industrial School celebrate the start of the schoolyear with a new computer lab donated by Bosch

Raised mostly by Robert Bosch, Inc. in Stuttgart, Germany, funds for Tindog Pilipinas amounted to €175,000 (PHP 10,822,356), including significant contributions voluntarily coming from Bosch associates across the globe.

The construction of the school facilities in Leyte and Cebu kicked-off in May 2014 when 22 Bosch associates flew to affected areas in both provinces for the company’s service week initiative. Using their vacation leave, the volunteers exchanged their computers for shovels and pick axes to work in the communities affected by Typhoon Yolanda. As a result, Bosch volunteers managed to sift seven cubic feet of sand, excavate land for five buildings, and build 70 sets of reinforcement bars to stand as foundation for 12 buildings.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Globe Business Gets Nod From Leading Cargo Forwarding Company Provides Mobile Services And Fleet Management System

   Globe Business has once again gained the trust of one of the country’s biggest enterprises as primary domestic cargo forwarding company Ximex Delivery Express, Inc. recently signed a partnership with the enterprise arm of Globe Telecom for its mobile telephony services and fleet management system  in time for the upgrade of its services.

With business in worldwide freight logistics, Ximex Delivery Express, Inc. acquired new postpaid lines and a fleet management system. All the new services are to equip their employees together with their cargo vehicles and trucks to increase productivity and ease in asset management.

Globe Business’ Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Solution for Fleet Management enables Ximex’s machines and other equipment to remotely exchange real-time data with other machines, people or information systems through Globe’s reliable communication network with minimal human intervention.    

With Globe Business’ Fleet Management System, Ximex can efficiently track their moving assets like delivery, service, or other vehicles using GPS devices. It allows for proper monitoring of the vehicles’ location, distance traveled, engine status and speed. The service also includes the capability to send alerts wherever there is an incident, anytime and anywhere.

Ximex Delivery Express, Inc. recently signed a partnership with Globe Business to equip its cargo vehicles and trucks with the latest Fleet Management solutions. The formal signing was attended by (L-R) Globe Senior Vice President for Enterprise Group Nikko Acosta, Globe VP for IT-Enabled Services Rey Lugtu, Ximex President Jerome Ibanez and Ximex Sales and Marketing Head Ryan De Leon.

“We look forward to a long lasting partnership with Ximex as we help grow their operations with our innovative mobile and ICT solutions services,” shares Globe Senior Vice President for Enterprise Group Nikko Acosta. He says that Globe Business remains a trailblazer when it comes to innovative technological solutions that help boost operations of enterprises.

Globe Vice President for IT Enabled Services Rey Lugtu attests, “A reliable solution like our M2M Fleet Management System ensures that a company has complete control of their moving assets. We are privileged to be Ximex’s preferred service provider and we will continue to prioritize offering them solutions that will help them focus on their main business.”

The Ximex Delivery Express, Inc. team together with the Enterprise Group Sales team, from (L-R) Enterprise Group Sales Industry Head, Joanne Quebengco-Perez; Enterprise Group Sales Cluster Head, Robie Reyes; XIMEX President and Chief Executive Officer, Jerome Ibanez, XIMEX Express Business Manager, Francis Atacador and Enterprise Group Account Manager, Benedick Fernandez.

Ximex President Jerome Ibanez adds, “It is an advantage that Globe Business is making these kinds of solutions readily available for companies like ours. These types of services are exactly what we need for us to improve our operations and promote increased productivity. We are confident that with this partnership, we can better equip Ximex with efficient and productive solutions.”

For over 2 decades, Ximex has consistently been a frontrunner in the industry with more than 20 branches located nationwide alongside 3 regional hubs, employing local agents and partners worldwide. Covering Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, Ximex specializes in prompt door-to-door deliveries of full load and co-load shipments via land, air and sea.

Globe Business is the corporate arm of Globe Telecom that provides a comprehensive range of ICT interconnectivity for the country’s top industries, businesses and commercial enterprises engineered according to their business requirements. The portfolio of products and services comprise of mobile, wireline, broadband, data connections, internet, managed services and IT-enabling services as well as cloud computing solutions. The company’s data center and carrier ethernet services are ISO- and MEF global standards-certified, respectively. To learn more, visit, or contact your Globe Business Account Manager.

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