business

Toyota PH affirms power to lead with unveiling of New Fortuner

October 21, 2020

Continuing its streak of digital vehicle launches, leading mobility company Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) has started the last quarter of 2020 with a highly-anticipated update on one of the most popular models in its lineup – the Toyota Fortuner. The New Fortuner range is headlined by the new LTD variant in 4x4 and 4x2 which comes in an exclusive design, followed by Q and V variants in automatic transmission, and the G variant available in AT and MT.  Starting at Php 1.63M for the G MT variant, TMP assures Filipinos of great value for money with Toyota’s signature quality, durability, and reliability embedded in the DNA of the country’s best-selling and well-loved Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV). During the online launch of the New Fortuner, TMP President Atsuhiro Okamoto recalled how the Fortuner changed the local automotive landscape at a time when entry level sedans and Asian utility vehicles were the affordable crowd favorite. “The Fortuner captured the hearts of many Filipinos as proven by strong sales.  It has an SUV body perfect for the Philippines’ flood-prone streets, an array of variants including a fuel-efficient diesel engine, a macho look that satisfies desires, and most of all, an affordable price – making it an achievable dream!” said Okamoto.  “The new Fortuner is SMARTER, STRONGER and SAFER than ever!  With its refreshed line-up led by the top-of-the-line premium LTD grade, the country’s best-selling SUV just got better!” he added. Since the Fortuner’s entry in the local market in 2005, TMP has already sold over 220,000 units of this highly-recognized SUV. In 2017, the Fortuner was crowned best-selling vehicle in the country. Just this August, the model dominated the mid-sized SUV category with over 30% market share. With the 2020 update, the Fortuner gets more confident, prestigious, safe, further proving itself a formidable and reliable SUV, perfect for any city or off-road drive.   Drive in style, drive to lead The New Fortuner LTD’s look is made more striking and more elegant coming in the 2-tone color black roof color lineup, a bolder and sportier front and rear bumper design, and machine-cut 18” alloy wheels. Split-type LED headlamps and LED front foglamps, sequential turn signal lamps, and the redesigned LED rear combination lamps give the LTD variant a more dynamic design while maintaining visibility on the road. The Q and V variants also get LED foglamps and redesigned LED rear combination lamps, as well as Bi-Beam LED Headlamps with LED Line Guide - Daytime Running Lights. G variants also now come with Bi-Beam LED Headlamps with LED DRL.   Confidence, ease, and control Ingress is smooth and easy with Smart Entry and Push Start System for LTD, Q, and V grades. The LTD variant features an elegant interior in leather with maroon accents, as well as galaxy black trim and interior illumination which adds to the sophisticated interior look of the vehicle. The Q variant also gets the classy black leather interior complemented by a dark wood trim. The driver gets more control over the ride with various modes: Eco and Sport for LTD and Q variants, Eco and Power for V and G variants, and easy access to switches on the steering wheel and through the Apple CarPlay/Android Auto-compatible audio system across all variants. LTD, Q, and V variants feature 8” display audio. Comfort and entertainment is guaranteed the whole journey for the driver and passengers as LTD and Q variants have 8-Way Power Adjust front seats, and Front Seat Ventilation System for the LTD variant. Never lose power with the wireless charger and rear USB chargers available on LTD, Q, and V grades, and experience premium sound quality over the LTD variants’ 9-speaker JBL sound system. Feel at ease throughout the ride with front and rear automatic control for V grades and up.   Made stronger and more efficient The New Fortuner LTD and Q variants are powered by the 1GD-FTV engine which gives 201 HP (204 Ps) max output and 500 Nm max torque, while the V and G variants have the 2GD-FTV engine which gives 147 HP (150Ps) max output and 400 Nm max torque.  The 2GD engine is improved for the New Fortuner V and G variants and enjoys 5% improvement in fuel efficiency versus the previous generation Fortuner.   Toyota Safety Sense now available in the New Fortuner With safety as Toyota’s utmost priority, the New Fortuner is the latest addition to the expanding Toyota Safety Sense (TSS)-equipped models in TMP’s official lineup. Made better and safer than ever, TSS settings previously featured in select Toyota models such as the Pre-Collision System, Lane Departure Alert, and Adaptive Cruise Control are now available for the Fortuner LTD and Q. All variants come with SRS airbags (7 for the LTD variants), 3-pt. ELR seatbelts, Anti-Lock Brake System with Brake Assist and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, Vehicle Stability Control with Traction Control, and Hill-Start Assist Control. The 4x4 LTD variant also has Downhill Assist Control. All variants also come with a total of 6 clearance and back sonars, in addition to the Panoramic View Monitor that comes with the LTD, Q, and V variants or reverse camera for the G variants.   Pricing The New Fortuner will be available in all of TMP’s 70 dealerships across the country by October 19, 2020. The New Fortuner is also available for safely-distanced viewing in our virtual showroom. Get the full dealership experience online and check out the product highlights, view the interior and exterior in 3D, calculate payments, and submit inquiries direct to any preferred dealer via https://toyota.com.ph/fortuner. For more information on the New Fortuner, visit TMP’s official website at www.toyota.com.ph and follow the official social media pages at ToyotaMotorPhilippines (Facebook and Instagram), @ToyotaMotorPH (Twitter), and Toyota PH (Viber and Telegram).

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SHELL’S 2ND VIRTUAL ART INTERACT SPOTLIGHTS MINDANAO | Creating stories of hope in isolation

October 20, 2020

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 [Ang daming stories ngayon tungkol sa struggle]. 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 [Maraming nag-iba since nagka-COVID. Na-affect yung career ko as an artist kasi madaming cancelled shows at exhibits, pero di lang ako tumitingin sa mga negative].  “‘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 [Pero ngayong pandemic, nakafocus ako sa sarili ko at sa art ko. Na-appreciate ko din ang bawat bagay, maliit man o malaki].” 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. [Dati, pangarap ko lang sa probinsya ay makatapos ng pag-aaral at kumuha ng trabaho. Nakakatuwa dahil di ko akalain na mananalo ako sa NSAC. Sobrang laking tulong ng NSAC. Nakatapos ako ng pag-aaral at natuto akong mangarap ng higit sa pangarap ko.]” 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. For more information, keep posted on Shell Philippines’ website and social media accounts.  Website: www.shell.com.ph Facebook: Shell

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So Many Sale Mindanao

October 19, 2020

Get extra 10% OFF* at #TheSMStore from October 19 to 25 (10AM** to 2PM) Participating branches: Cagayan de Oro, CDO Downtown Premier, Davao, Lanang Premier, General Santos. *With a minimum P3,000 single-receipt purchase **Davao and Lanang Premier starting 9AM Per DTI Fair Trade Permit No. RXII 019, Series of 2020

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Coca-Cola’s Balik Pinas program helps OFWs to restart back home

October 19, 2020

“Even as I left Qatar, I always envisioned that I would head back to work there. But with (the) “Balik Pinas (Program)” of Coca-Cola, I would say that I wouldn’t want to work anywhere else and be away from my family again.” - CARLOS MANZANO “I was suddenly jobless, and during a global crisis. I worried about supporting my family,” says Carlos Manzano, 43-year-old breadwinner for a family of two. “I really didn’t have any plans for when I returned to the Philippines—especially since I was an OFW for almost a decade.”      Carlos had been working as a company messenger in Qatar for eight years—until the COVID-19 pandemic shook the trajectory of his career and, consequently, the well-being of his family. Carlos shares that he had just planned for a short visit to his loved ones back home in the Philippines when his company carried out company-wide layoffs. “I couldn’t have known,” Carlos shares, “that my short trip would be a permanent one.”      Carlos and his brother Jazz, who shared the same fate as his, returned to the Philippines. Their livelihoods were casualties of the pandemic: their future, and that of their families, was marked by uncertainty. Their outlook mirrored those of the 180,000 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) repatriated due to the pandemic and the numerous crises it gave rise to.   A ROAD TO A NEW START With equal parts determination, resilience, and unflagging hope, Carlos, Jazz, and their father Lito—who himself had been an OFW for eighteen years—set up a beverage distribution business called Naga Jac Beverages Trading in their hometown of Naga. But, as with any new business venture, the family’s optimism was tempered with anxiety over how it would all turn out—especially during such tenuous times.      During the construction of their warehouse, however, a perfect opportunity to succeed presented itself in the form of the “Balik Pinas Program of Coca-Cola”, which was offered to the Manzano family by Carlos Rivera, the Territory Sales Manager of Coca-Cola Beverages Philippines, Inc. (CCBPI) in Naga City.       For the Manzanos, the gesture strengthened their hopes regarding their family’s future. The support and opportunities provided by the Balik Pinas Program—the trust that they held for Coca-Cola — allowed them to restart back home, taking comfort in the knowledge that they had help.      Lito can still remember his first order of coke products: 60 cases. He is all smiles as he shares that the business has grown to an average of 4,000 cases a month, just five months after they started and in the middle of pandemic, to say the least. They have also invested in routing units—a multicab and a tricycle.      For the Manzanos, “Balik Pinas” has allowed them to continuously support their family. “Even as I left Qatar, I always envisioned that I would head back to work there. But with (the) “Balik Pinas (Program)” of Coca-Cola, I would say that I wouldn’t want to work anywhere else and be away from my family again,” said Carlos.       “Saro ining blessing,” says Jazz Manzano in Bicolano. It was a blessing. A REFRESHING RESTART 45-year-old Billy Belleza, on the other hand, was excited to head home after 20 years of working in Brunei. He voluntarily left in March 2019 to start a water-refilling station business in Naga. “I was excited to head back home. I was able to rise up from being a simple janitor to a sales manager in Brunei,” says Billy. “I had the confidence and the experience; I told myself I didn’t need to worry too much.”      Billy was among the pioneer members of the program. His business, Andre Water Station, soon became an outfit that primarily sold Coca-Cola products— and has since become one of the prominent distributors in his area after he, too, discovered the Company’s Balik Pinas Program. Billy shares his first delivery from Coca-Cola— “It was during the Traslacion in Naga. It was a blessed-filled kickstart”.       Billy has since bought another routing unit, a mini truck, to expand his routes and deliveries. Andre Water Station also transferred their warehouse to a bigger and better location to support a growing business.      “Coca-Cola has never failed to present opportunities for me and my business to grow since I decided to take part in the Balik Pinas Program,” shares Billy. Besides direct guidance and support from CCBPI Territory Sales Manager Carlos Rivera, the Company helps grow Billy’s customer base and taps him to be the official supplier for booth set-ups in his area.      “The Balik Pinas program started as a small-scale effort here in Naga to help former OFWs like Billy, Carlos, and Jazz and their families to set up and successfully run a business,” shares CCBPI’s Rivera. “With their success and in light of current events, this program has been expanded to a national scale to help repatriated OFWs and their families recover gradually during these trying times.” THE COCA-COLA BALIK PINAS PROGRAM Coca-Cola in the Philippines has consistently sought to create programs to support MSMEs, more so now with the COVID-19 pandemic having disrupted lives and livelihoods. “Balik Pinas” is one of those programs; it aims to help returning OFWs like Carlos, Jazz, and Billy as they restart in the Philippines and support their families through new businesses.       With the program, the Company provides an opportunity to become a part of the Coca-Cola family as a distributor, wholesaler, stills distributor, or a community reseller.       This is a journey that the Company and these new entrepreneurs take together at every step—from setting up the business, to sustaining it, to ensuring growth. CCBPI assists former OFWs in choosing a suitable business model for their area, helps in managing their cash flow and inventory, and sees to it that they are given proper guidance and training until they are fully ready and equipped to operate on their own—all in all, a sustainable and profitable business founded on practical support from a global beverage brand.      With programs like Balik Pinas, Coca-Cola remains firm in their commitment to help local communities, contributing to the restart of the national economy—by way of reaching out to Filipinos.       “Coca-Cola’s commitment to Filipinos has only grown stronger, in weathering this crisis together,” says Gareth McGeown, CCBPI President and CEO. “We will help and support where we can. Through Balik Pinas, our goal is to help repatriated OFWs who have lost their livelihood abroad to start anew, via owning and operating their own business and be successful here, at home, with their families.”       With the help of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), CCBPI aims to reach more OFWs who are interested to start their own business through Balik Pinas. To know more about the program, you may reach Coca-Cola’s contact center at (02)-8813-COKE (2653). For SMART/PLDT users: toll-free number: 1800-1888-COKE (2653); and for GLOBE users: toll-free number: 1800-8888-COKE (2653). You may also contact 0919-160-COKE (2653) via SMS.

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Holcim reiterates readiness to support Mindanao recovery amid Covid-19

October 12, 2020

Leading cement manufacturer Holcim Philippines, Inc. recently shared the company’s commitment to support the development of Mindanao amid the Covid-19 pandemic highlighting its strengths in health and safety and commercial innovation as key contributions to recovery. In a virtual media briefing with the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) on September 02, Holcim Philippines Senior Vice President and Chief Finance Officer Jena Rojas provided an overview of the company’ Health, Cash, and Cost framework in responding to the challenges of Covid-19. She was joined by MinDA Assistant Secretary Romeo Montenegro as well as representatives from the Department of Public Works and Highways Region XI and XII offices. "Our company responded quickly and effectively to the challenging situation and we remain confident in bouncing back and sustaining our commitment to support our partners. Our response is focused on three areas: Health, Cash and Cost. The first priority is keeping our people healthy and safe, second is making sure that we preserve our cash so we can support our company needs and third is being mindful about costs so we only spend for the most essential aspects of the business," she said. Rojas also introduced the company’s new leaders for its facilities in Misamis Oriental and Davao Plant Managers, Arnold Pepino and Sam Manlosa, who respectively talked about Holcim Philippines’ efforts to be more prudent on costs and make operations safer from Covid-19. Rojas noted noted that its Mindanao plants are both headed by Mindanawons, the first time in the company's history.  Meanwhile, Holcim Philippines Senior Vice President for Sales William Sumalinog discussed the company’s readiness to support Mindanao's manufacturing industry in becoming a stronger contributor to development during the Mindanao Business Conference on September 10. He was joined in the virtual panel by Senator Imee Marcos, Board of Investments Governor Napoleon Concepcion and Oro Chamber President Robertino Pizarro. Sumalinog noted that the Department of Trade and Industry had identified poor infrastructures as among those holding back manufacturing in the Philippines in a policy paper on raising the industry's competitiveness. He added that Holcim is well equipped to support partners build these structures in Mindanao as seen by its recent Davao plant upgrade, roll out of new building solutions such as road infrastructure cement Solido and pavement repair solution SuperFastCrete, and other digital innovations. "As you can see we are not slowing down especially at this time when the government has deemed it essential to continue upgrading infrastructures in the country. Doing so does not only raise the level of competitiveness of the manufacturing industry, but also shield the economy from the blows of the pandemic. We remain confident that we are well equipped to deliver great value and support to builders working to improve the competitiveness of Mindanao’s manufacturing sector and all our stakeholders in the region who are united in their dreams of a better Mindanao," he said.  **********  Holcim Philippines, Inc. (Philippine Stock Exchange: HLCM) is one of the leading building solution companies in the country. The Company has a deep portfolio of innovative solutions fostered by a full range of products from structuring to finishing applications that can help local builders execute with high performance and efficiency a wide range of projects from massive infrastructure to simple home repairs.   With cement manufacturing facilities in La Union, Bulacan, Batangas, Misamis Oriental and Davao, as well as aggregates and dry mix business and technical support facilities for building solutions, Holcim Philippines is a reliable partner of builders in the country.   Holcim Philippines is also committed to the highest standards of sustainable operations and manufacturing excellence with its plants certified under ISO 14001:2004 (Environmental Management System), ISO 9001:2008 (Quality Management System) and OHSAS 18001:2007 (Occupational Health and Safety Management System).  Holcim Philippines is a member of the LafargeHolcim Group, the world leader in the building materials industry present in 80 countries with over 75,000 employees.

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SM 10.10 SALE

October 10, 2020

Take 10% OFF* plus an EXTRA 10% discount on select brands this October 10 at #TheSMStore! To order, call #143SM (#14376) from 10AM to 7PM. *With a minimum P3,000 single-receipt purchase Per DTI Fair Trade Permit No. FTEB-105411 Series of 2020

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