Today's Top Stories

  • IMEE: Scrap Pork Imports

    IMEE: Scrap Pork Imports

      Senator Imee Marcos has called on the government to prevent pork importers from taking over local market supply and pushing Filipino producers out of business. “The slaughter of our local hog raisers will begin if the Department of Agriculture (DA) succeeds in its push to raise the minimum access volume of pork imports from the present 54,000 metric tons,” Marcos said. In a Senate hearing last Monday, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said that the government was considering pork imports that may exceed 400,000 metric tons. Marcos, who chairs the Senate committee on economic affairs, said that pork imports “may deal the coup de grace to our pork industry before Vietnam could release a vaccine against African swine fever (ASF) later this year,” Marcos added. The spread of African swine fever has forced Luzon to import some 80% of its pork supply from the Visayas and Mindanao. Marcos said the government can bring down meat prices by subsidizing the cost of transporting pork products to Luzon, pointing out that the DA got the single biggest item for emergency and stimulus funding under Bayanihan 2, amounting to Php24 billion. “Many local hog raisers have already shut down their business. Importation amid the Covid-19 pandemic means more local jobs will be lost and surrendering the country’s food security to foreigners,” Marcos said.  

    February 24, 2021

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  • Pacquiao visits birthplace, reminisces  hard life

    Pacquiao visits birthplace, reminisces  hard life

    FOR the first time since  his family quietly left his birthplace in the rural town of Kibawe,  Bukidnon to try their luck in the city, Senator Manny Pacquiao has returned in a grand homecoming that allowed him to share not only the fruits of his success but his story of hardships  that molded him to greatness.   Kibawe municipal hall, Mayor Reynaldo "Jimboy Tebontu" S. Ang Rabanes said they invited Senator Pacquiao to Kibawe to give tribute not only for his extra-ordinary achievements in boxing but also for his unparalleled dedication to serve the people.   In a symbolic ceremony at the Kibawe municipal hall,  Rabanes turned over to  Pacquaio a copy of his birth certificate to show that he is truly a son of Kibawe.   Pacquiao  was only five years old when his family decided to leave Kibawe and move to General Santos City because of the constant skirmishes between government security forces and communist rebels.   Pacquiao's mom, Mommy Dionisia was originally from the town of Glan, Sarangani ( originally part of South Cotabato)  but after a tortous marriage, she  eloped with her second husband and went to Kibawe where he was born.   But with the constant fighting in the town that was once infested with insurgents, Senator Pacquaio's family struggled to make ends meet and survived on root crops. The hard life forced his family to move to General Santos City where Pacquaio continued to live a life of struggle and hardship.   Pacquiao said that his visit to Kibawe is a fitting reminder of his roots which was built and strengthened by his sheer determination to succeed.   " Hinding-hindi ko makakalimutan itong lugar dahil dito ako namulat kung paano ang maging mahirap. Ang Kibawe na kinamulatan ko ay  napakahirap ang pamumuhay at pugad ito ng mga rebelde noon kaya  kailangan naming umalis at makipagsapalaran sa Gensan," Pacquiao related.   "Kahit madilim ang hinarap ng aming pamilya hindi ako nawalan ng pag- asa. Tulad ng marami sa ating mga kababayan dito sa Kibawe  ay araw -araw tayong lumalaban sa kahirapan at kalayaang makapamuhay kahit simple basta malayo sa takot at ligtas ang ating pamilya," he added.   After the symbolic ceremony and a brief meeting with local government officials,. Pacquaio went on to give away grocery packs and P1,000 cash gifts to poor residents.   In his speech, Pacquiao renewed his challenge to rich politicians to share their money to the poor. He said that if only rich officials would all pitch in to help the poor,  the number of impoverished Filipinos would be a lot lesser.   He said if given the chance, he would prioritize building a "mega prison" facility which would be intended for corrupt government officials.   "Sa puso ko gusto kong bigyan ng hustisya ang mga kababayan nating mahihirap mula sa mga kurap na politiko," Pacquiao said.   "Wala na akong kailangan. Di ko na kailangan ang kasikatan at kanya. God always provide. But i want to give justice to the poor. Kaya sa mga ganid na  politiko na walang ginawa kundi magnakaw sa gobyerno, may araw din kayo," he added.   Accompanying Pacquiao in his homecoming trip to Kibawe are Bukidnon Rep. Manuel Zubiri and other provincial government officials.

    February 24, 2021

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Mindanao Daily News

Toyota PH affirms power to lead with unveiling of New Fortuner

October 21, 2020

Motoring

By: , 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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Trucks dealer NZH International expands to Mindanao

July 27, 2020

Motoring

By: Mark Francisco, QUEZON City-based NZH International Vehicle & Machinery, Inc. has established its first branch outside Luzon right here in Cagayan de Oro City. NZH Mindanao was inaugurated last Saturday (July 18) in its premises at the heart of the city particularly at Cugman Highway. It is now the fourth branch of the ever growing NZH International Vehicle & Machinery, Inc. which has maintained two more branches in the northern part of the country outside of its flagship dealership in Quezon City. According to NZH International Vehicle & Machinery, Inc. national sales director Robin Lu, they chose Cagayan de Oro as their stepping stone in other parts of the Philippines even in this time of pandemic since the government here has managed the COVID-19 crisis well so as to steer the economy as well. In the words of Maybelle Quilnat of NZH Mindanao herself, she opined that the administration of Mayor Oscar Moreno has recognized the continuing relevance of supply providers such as their business in keeping the economy float and at the same time managing the coronavirus pandemic. At the same time, Quilnat also said that NZH International Vehicle & Machinery, Inc. ventured into the Mindanao market particularly here in Cagayan de Oro City since it is the gateway to the northern part of the island. Quilnat said that industry vehicle providers such as their company are essential especially at this time of the pandemic to keep the movement of supplies stable. NZH Mindanao has a wide range of Shacman dumptrucks, transit mixers, tractor heads, wing vans and cargo trucks. She said that these are used in construction, freight forwarding, aggregates trucking and mining, among others. “Even during the time of pandemic, they continue to operate.” For his part, Moreno expressed his gratitude to NZH International Vehicle & Machinery, Inc. for putting their investments in Cagayan de Oro City in the midst of these trying times, saying they are not just helping to buoy up the economy but their transport conveyances are essential in all sectors. At present, Shacman heavy duty trucks are sold in more than 90 countries, the export and export volume ranking in the leading position of the industry, providing a full range of logistics solutions. Indeed it is here in the Philippines. Lu said the trend of the trucking industry in the country is for the logistics and construction sectors to buy durable equipment over less expensive but unworthy ones. He assured potential clients that NZH International Vehicle & Machinery, Inc. excels in after-sales service in all its dealerships nationwide.

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Toyota Motor Philippines Online E-Sports program – GR Supra GT Cup Asia – Philippines

June 15, 2020

Motoring

By: , This move was brought about by the latest situation where safety is of highest concern to everyone and mass gatherings like physical races are foreseen to be limited in the coming months. “Safety of our customers, employees, and fans are always at the top of our priority,” expressed TMP President Atsuhiro Okamoto.  “But we also recognize the value of waku-doki spirit in everyone!  This is a great way to sustain the excitement of motorsports program in the Philippines in a safe environment.” The GR Supra GT Cup Asia – Philippines, an e-racing event under Toyota’s Gazoo Racing motorsports program, will be fully held online and will be open to the public, ages 18 and above.  “Finally, Toyota fans can participate in our sports program at the comfort and safety of their own homes.  We also expect this activity to reach a wider and younger audience, based on the profile of gamers.”  The online e-race, using Toyota’s legendary sports car icon, the GR Supra, is expected to start in July 2020.  Winners of the e-race will get a chance to participate in the regional finals, the GR Supra GT Cup – Asia. E-Sports in the Philippines have grown in popularity over the years. The addition of E-sports programs in various international competitions, producing Filipino medalists, have further legitimized the sport. The GR Supra GT Cup Asia – Philippines is Toyota’s fun and safe alternative to holding the country’s number one motorsports program, The Vios Racing Festival. Usually held in 3 legs from the second to the fourth quarter, the current situation makes it very challenging for Toyota, the racings teams, the drivers, and public spectators to do this physical event. “We look forward to a better 2021 Vios Racing Festival Season where we can go back to the tracks again and feel the heat and excitement.  But for now, we invite everyone to join the GR Supra GT Cup Asia E-Sports Program,” Okamoto concluded. More details of the GR Supra GT Cup Asia – Philippines will be announced soon.  Stay tuned at Toyota.com.ph and facebook/ToyotaMotorPhilippines to get updates.

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Hino Reopens Dealerships Nationwide

June 15, 2020

Motoring

By: , Hino Motors Philippines, the exclusive distributor of Hino trucks and buses in the country, recently reopened its doors to Filipinos as the national quarantine guidelines eased up. All of Hino’s 21 dealerships nationwide are back in operations. With the majority of the country now in General Community Quarantine (GCQ), Modified GCQ (MGCQ) and many business establishments are already reopening, Hino resumes operations to help the economy recuperate from the hit it took from the COVID-19 pandemic. Hino’s reopening of its dealerships is in line with the provisions and guidelines of community quarantine on each area. To ensure the health and safety of its customers, workers and partners, Hino observes strict cleanliness and health protocols such as the regular checking of temperature. All dealerships nationwide will undergo regular and thorough sanitization to maintain a safe and clean environment. Those entering the dealerships are required to hand sanitize with alcohol and to keep their face masks on during their entire stay inside. In compliance with physical distancing guidelines, only a limited number of customers will be allowed at a time. Hino will also be stringent in limiting human contact for all customer transactions. Hino has 21 3S dealerships across Metro Manila and key provincial cities. Below is the list of operational Hino 3S dealerships: NCR: Hino Balintawak Hino J. Abad Santos Hino U.N. Avenue Hino Pasig Hino Paranaque Luzon: Hino Isabela Hino Nueva Ecija Hino Pampanga Hino Carmona Hino Laguna Hino Batangas Hino Naga   Visayas: Hino Leyte Hino Panay Hino Negros Hino Cebu Hino Mandaue   Mindanao: Hino Butuan Hino Cagayan de Oro Hino Davao Hino Gen. Santos To access Hino’s full list of dealership centers and contact numbers, customers may refer to this link. More announcements are updated in Hino’s official website and social media pages on Facebook and Twitter.

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Globe announces full year 2020 results

February 17, 2021

Corporate

By: PR, AS a testament to Globe’s commitment to provide internet access to all Filipinos, the Company invested a total of ₱60.3 billion in capex in 2020, surpassing last year’s record level spending by 18%. Also, 2020 capex represented 41% of gross service revenues and 82% of EBITDA. Majority of the capex or about 86% went to data-related requirements to meet the growing data demands of Filipinos nationwide. Full year 2021 cash capex is expected to reach a new record of ₱70.0 billion to execute the Company’s network roll-out strategy that includes aggressive cell site builds, upgrade of all its sites to Fourth Generation/Long-Term Evolution technology (4G/LTE), and fast-tracking the fiberization of Filipino homes nationwide. This record-breaking capital expenditure supports Globe’s continuous modernization of its network to make 5G as well as fiber technology available to customers in more areas in the country. Globe’s massive network investments likewise prove its strong support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, particularly UN SDG No. 9 which highlights the roles of infrastructure and innovation as crucial drivers of economic growth and development. Despite the continuing impact of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Globe was able to build close to 1,300 new cell sites or cell towers, up from 1,100 the previous year. Also, the aggressive modernization of its existing network infrastructure resulted to a total of 11,529 site upgrades to 4G/LTE this year, higher than the 10,135 in 2019. Moreover, Globe deployed 5G sites in Metro Manila, as well as certain cities in Visayas and Mindanao making 5G available in 1,045 areas in the country. These network improvements enhanced the customer experience and the Filipino digital lifestyle, and addressed the challenges of the new normal. The new site builds and network upgrades all over the country were validated by an increase in mobile consistency scores across all regions as indicated in the recent report from an independent analytics firm, Ookla®. Its quarterly data shows that Globe's overall Consistency Score in the fourth quarter of 2020 improved to 60.82% from previous quarter’s 56.83%. Globe’s regional mobile Consistency Score™ also improved from the previous quarter in 16 out of 17 regions. In addition, Globe registered increases as high as 10 PPTs (percentage points), with Consistency Scores ranging from 39% and 65% in the last quarter of 2020. Globe financial and operating results for 2020 reported consolidated service revenues of ₱146.4 billion, a moderate decline of 2% from the record level of ₱149.0 billion reported a year ago.

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GET AMPED UP WITH AMPALAYA PLUS AND DANCE ON TIKTOK FOR A CAUSE 

December 2, 2020

Corporate

By: PR, Move to the rhythm of the latest online dance craze that gets your heart pumping and fuller in goodwill while keeping your blood sugar at a healthy level.  Nattural Quality Corporation (NQC), the makers of Filipino herbal dietary supplement Ampalaya Plus, invites students and social media influencers to dance on TikTok for a chance to donate educational tablets to students in need through the “AMP UP Dance Challenge” (ampup.ampalayaplus.com).  In partnership with Christian radio station Radio Veritas, the campaign promotes holistic well-being while providing students with educational tools during this challenging time of alternative learning. Ampalaya Plus will be giving away learning tablets to ten entries with top social media engagement, while schools that encourage their students to take on the challenge will also be rewarded with gadgets for online teaching. To make it even more exciting, social media influencers with more than 1,000 followers are welcome to join on behalf of their chosen beneficiaries. How to join? A participant must upload a dance video of themselves together with family members on Tiktok, performing the official AMP UP dance steps. Complete the entry with the caption and hashtag #AmpalayaPlusDanceUp and the name of their school. The group representative must also send a copy of the entry via direct message to the Ampalaya Plus Facebook page to qualify. The campaign is championed by celebrities RJ Agustin, Kristoff Garcia, and Sisi Rondina, three young people who aim to highlight the importance of  a healthy diet and regular exercise among young adults, especially against diabetes. “The AMP UP Dance Challenge hopes to raise awareness among the youth about their vulnerability to diseases, particularly diabetes, through an engaging and collaborative activity for them and the older members of the household,” said Benson Sian, founder, and CEO of Nattural Quality Corporation. “Their video entries to this online challenge will also serve as a lasting record of their bonding moments during this time of the pandemic.” According to the IDF Diabetes Atlas, diabetes accounted for 4.2 million deaths last year and was responsible for 10% of the global total health expenditure on healthcare at $760 billion. Despite the staggering figures, 1 in 11 adults aged 20-79 have diabetes, while 1 in 2 adults who have it remain undiagnosed. Tagged as “Nature’s Wonder Superfood for Diabetes,” Ampalaya Plus can help manage high blood sugar levels naturally. The natural dietary food supplement contains three of nature’s most potent wonder herbs, namely, bitter gourd (ampalaya), lagerstroemia speciosa (banaba), and turmeric (luyang dilaw).  Ampalaya is among the 10 medicinal plants promoted by the Philippine Department of Health that help maintain blood sugar levels. Meanwhile, studies show that banaba contains corosolic acid, which has numerous anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory properties. Lastly, turmeric, or the “Golden Spice,” has been traditionally used in ancient medicine for its numerous health benefits.  For more details on Ampalaya Plus and NQC, visit gonatural.com.ph. To know more about the AMP UP Dance Challenge, from the video tutorial of the dance moves and official jingle to the full mechanics of the contest, go to ampup.ampayalaplus.com.  

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Out with the Old, In with the New: Doña Elena Olive Oil Introduces its Latest Look

November 30, 2020

Corporate

By: PR, The nourishment that we’re craving right now is all about healthy, affordable, and easy to create home-cooked meals. And why not? In this period of the new normal, most people will agree that cooking is a way we can bring some order and a sense of pleasure in our lives right now.  Whether you’ve been looking for ways on how to cook deliciously affordable meals or wanting to feel empowered in the kitchen, Doña Elena, the country’s no. 1 olive oil inspires you with some thoughtful ideas that won’t only sustain, but will also bring comfort during this time of corona.    A new look that you’ll love: Introducing the new Doña Elena Olive Oil bottle that’s recognizable for patrons and accommodating for first-time users  Celebrated for its perfected combination of premium-quality olives directly sourced and harvested from the farms of Andalucia in Spain, Doña Elena Olive Oil has been dominating the market for a full decade now. We break down what makes Doña Elena Olive Oil the ideal choice in preparing home-cooked, restaurant-quality meals that will inspire you to cook healthily at home! Packed with the good stuff What separates Doña Elena Olive Oil from the rest of the field is its ability to take an already-healthy dietary staple up a notch and make it even fuller in flavor. Extracted from the fruit of olive trees, olive oil defines the Mediterranean diet. Countries like Spain and Greece that have it as part of their native cuisine touts some of the world’s healthiest populations, thanks in large part to the health benefits of olive oil.   Doña Elena Olive Oil is a blend of high-quality hojiblanca and picual olives Doña Elena’s offerings, in particular, are rich in good fats and oxidants through the combination of two types of olives, hojiblanca and picual. Each bottle contains 80% monounsaturated oleic acids, which is proven to regulate insulin and support weight management according to research. The heart-friendly fat is also known for supporting the health of the heart and enhancing brain function. These two organs could be hit by COVID-19, studies say.  Doña Elena Olive Oil comes loaded with high levels of antioxidants like polyphenols and is packed with vitamins E, K, and A that helps lower bad cholesterols. Everything for anything As diverse as the health advantages of olive oils are in its applications, Doña Elena Olive Oil comes in three variants to make any type of dish shine with flavorful and aromatic taste. There’s Extra Virgin for dips and salad dressing; Pure Olive Oil for pasta and everyday cooking; and Pomace for roasting and frying. What’s more, Doña Elena Olive Oil is the only brand that offers the most comprehensive sizes. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a kitchen rookie, Doña Elena’s Pure, Extra Virgin, and Pomace are conveniently available in 250 ml, 500 ml, 1 Liter, and 5 Liter PET bottle sizes so you have all the options for every purpose and need. As tasty as it looks To make sure that the packaging of Doña Elena Olive Oil does justice to its quality, a renowned French designer was tasked in 2017 to create a new bottle befitting a well-loved premium quality product. The result is a strengthened brand identity that is at the same time recognizable to patrons and accommodating to first-time users.   Doña Elena Olive Oil’s carefully curated bottle design is a stand-out for its elegant and functional design The new packaging includes two significant, fine engravings on the bottle that are exclusively Doña Elena: the Doña Elena insignia near the top, and the olive fruit near the base. Another detail that customers enjoy is the usage recommendation per variant that is printed on the label, making it easier to choose the right olive oil for your cooking needs.  For whatever occasion, Doña Elena Olive Oil comes through as the perfect culinary companion in preparing delicious meals that are good for the health and light on the wallet. Doña Elena Olive Oil is available in all groceries and supermarkets nationwide. Buy online beginning November 20 at www.AceMarket.ph.   --- Fly Ace Corporation is one of the leading food and beverage consumer goods companies in the country today. Propelling limitless multiple-category growth by bringing the best of the world closer to Filipino consumers, Fly Ace Corporation’s portfolio of food and beverage products includes house brands and exclusively distributed brands. To learn more about Fly Ace, visit www.flyacecorp.com. Doña Elena Olive Oil is exclusively distributed by Fly Ace Corporation in the Philippines. It is the consistent no. 1 Olive Oil brand according to A.C. Nielsen. Available in three (3) variants, Extra Virgin, Pure, and Pomace which comes in 250 ml, 500 ml, 1 Liter glass bottles, and 5 Liter PET bottle sizes. For more tips, recipes, and promos visit @donaelenacuisineraclub on Facebook and Instagram.          

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AIA Philam Life continues Save Lives Mission, launches new funds

November 28, 2020

Corporate

By: PR, AIA Philam Life continues to fulfill its purpose-driven mission to race against risk and protect every Filipino family and empower them to live healthier, longer, and better lives.    The Philam Group (AIA Philam Life and BPI-Philam combined) rallies behind its Save Lives commitment achieving 67 per cent of its target of lives saved, and 61 per cent in terms of basic sum assured coverage. Despite challenges of the current pandemic, Philam Group was able to stay the course by quickly strengthening its digital capabilities, initially with the Facebook chatbot, the enhanced digital selling (EDS), and now Coffee Closing is fully operational, allowing digital selling to be completed within 20 minutes.    AIA Philam Life CEO Kelvin Ang said, “While it has been a challenging year, the pandemic has given us a stronger purpose to fulfill our mission. We remain committed to fulfilling our Save Lives targets and will work towards its completion by the end of the year. It helps immensely that we are well-positioned to fully embrace the shift to digital in response to the physical restrictions. With our digitally enabled agency force, we are ready to continue addressing the protection needs of Filipinos, now at a faster rate. As we continue to adapt to the situation, this also means technology, digital and analytics will be at the center, becoming our enablers in the fulfillment of our mission.”    AIA Philam Life remains financially strong and stable despite the local economic challenges. “Our financial strength, through our assets and net worth, remained robust throughout 2020 with no significant impact from the pandemic. Our new business results (measured as annualized new premiums) continue to improve in the third quarter, reflected in the strong double-digit growth vs the previous one,” said Gary Ogilvie, AIA Philam Life Chief Financial Officer (CFO). “Furthermore, we are pleased with our product mix and shift to protection and related improvement in our new business margins. We remain confident of the opportunities ahead, with the low insurance penetration rate, and our strategy coupled with an increased awareness of health risks and the value of protection following the pandemic.”   The year showed continued customer patronage for AIA Philam Life’s protection products, with its protection trinity offering making it to the top four bestsellers of the company: AIA Critical Protect 100, AIA All-in-One, and AIA Med-Assist. “Our focus on protection products has allowed AIA Philam Life to achieve a more balanced portfolio, with high protection products accounting for almost half of the mix,” said Leonardo Tan Jr, AIA Philam Life Chief Marketing Officer. “Customers who now have ample coverage for medical emergencies, critical illness and untimely passing, would want to look for solutions for their long-term savings needs, which is why we are now launching new funds that will address this new demand.”   Taking Your Investment Global    With an already strong protection portfolio, AIA Philam Life introduces the global fund range that will be made available through its suite of variable insurance products aimed at addressing the long-term savings needs of customers, with support from AIA Investment Management Pte. Ltd. (AIA IM).    AIA IM is an AIA-affiliated company that was incorporated in 2016 as the hub for regional investment management, solely managing the assets of the AIA entities within the AIA Group and providing investment solutions for customers.    “A first to market approach in the Philippines, the Elite Fund Portfolios Range provide unit linked customers access to global investment strategies managed by best in class fund managers. The Elite Funds combine the different strategies to match client risk profiles and focus on delivering long term investment returns. AIA’s experienced team of investment professionals monitor the funds and strategies in the same way we manage our own money. We invest alongside our customers using the same best in class fund managers and apply consistent standards of professional oversight, providing our customers with the reassurance and consistency they expect from AIA.” said Mark Konyn, AIA Group Chief Investment Officer.   With the support from AIA IM, AIA Philam Life launches the Elite Funds, offering options to customers depending on their risk appetite: Adventurous Fund, Balanced Fund, and Conservative Fund. These funds are sub-managed by leading global investment managers Baillie Gifford, Wellington Management, and Blackrock.     “Through our partnership with AIA IM, we are able to give our clients access to a global portfolio of professionally managed funds that can help them grow their money in the long run,” said Arleen Guevara, AIA Philam Life Chief Investment Officer. “By giving them more investment options, we are empowering them to achieve their long-term savings objective, thus bringing to life our brand purpose of helping Filipinos live Healthier, Longer and Better Lives.”   Find out how you can invest in these funds by visiting the AIA Philam Life website at philamlife.com, Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AIAPhilamLife/, emailing philamlife@aia.com or calling (02)8528-2000.

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SEC reminds Normin, Caraga corporations to submit audited financial statement before June 30

June 9, 2020

Money Matters

By: PR, THE Securities and Exchange Commission – Cagayan de Oro Extension Office (SEC-CDOEO) reminds all corporations for the submission of Audited Financial Statements (AFS) which is due this June 30, 2020. The Northern Mindanao and Caraga Regions’ Stock and Non-Stock corporations whose fiscal year ends November 30, 2019 and December 31, 2019 are obliged to submit their AFS together with the General Information Sheet (GIS) otherwise corresponding penalties will incur.       Atty. Renato V. Egypto, Director for SEC-CDOEO in a statement reminds all corporations to file and submit their reports “For all corporations, it is best to file early as now for us to avoid crowd or mass gathering. The SEC-CDOEO has been open to accept submissions since the occurrence of pandemic in the region”.       SEC-CDOEO accepts walk-in submissions from Monday to Friday (8:00AM – 5:00PM). Preemptive measures are observed in the office and thus, clients are directed to follow.       For areas with travel restrictions, clients may send their reports via courier with mailing address: SEC Bldg., Tomas Saco Del Lara Sts., Macasandig, Cagayan de Oro City.       Sending through e-mail (soft copies) is also accepted however will be deemed as partial submission considering that hard copies will complete the requirements. With this, electronic signatures, and unnotarized documents are temporarily allowed. Reports have to be submitted through reports_cdo@sec.gov.ph.       This submission is in pursuance to the Revised Corporation Code, under Sec. 177 (a) which requires all corporations to submit their annual financial statements to be audited by an independent Certified Public Accountant, however, if total assets or total liabilities of the corporation are less than Six Hundred Thousand Pesos (Php 600, 000.00), the financial statements shall be certified under oath by the Corporation’s treasurer or chief financial officer.       The reportorial requirements shall be submitted annually and within such period as may be prescribed by the Commission.       The AFS other than the consolidated financial statements, shall have the stamped “received” by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) or its authorized banks, unless the BIR allows an alternative proof of submission for its authorized banks (e.g. bank slips).       Late filings shall have corresponding penalties as imposed by the Commission guidelines, and/or may place the Corporation under delinquent status in case of failure to submit the reportorial requirements three (3) times, consecutively or intermittently, within a period of five (5) years. The Commission shall give reasonable notice to and coordinate with the appropriate regulatory agency prior to placing under delinquent status companies under their special regulatory jurisdiction.

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Unemployed persons in R10 rise to 236,000 as of April 2020

June 9, 2020

Money Matters

By: PSA PR, RESULTS of the April 2020 Labor Force Survey shows that unemployment rate in the region registered at 11.1 percent. This is the highest recorded unemployment rate since 2005. Unemployment rate in January 2020 was reported at 3.2 percent while April 2019 unemployment rate posted at 5.0 percent.   In terms of magnitude, the total number of unemployed individuals as of April 2020 reached to 236,000, higher than the recorded unemployed persons in April 2019 at 121,000. In other words, there are 115,000 more individuals who are unemployed as of April 2020 as compared to the same period in the previous year which reflects the impact of CoVID-19 economic shutdown to the labor market.   The region's unemployment rate is lower than the national average of unemployment rate at 17.7 percent. The region also posted the lowest unemployment rate among the 17 regions.   Employment rate in the region fell to 88.9 percent in April 2020 from 96.8 percent in January 2020. In April 2019, employment rate registered at 95.0 percent. This translates to a decrease in the employed persons by around 400 thousand, that is, from 2.3 million employed persons in April 2019 to 1.9 million persons in April 2020.   The region, however, recorded the highest employment rate among the 17 regions of the country.

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PSBank Q1 net income: P646.2m

May 7, 2020

Money Matters

By: , THE Philippine Savings Bank (PSBank), the consumer banking arm of the Metrobank Group, recorded a net income of PhP646.2 million for the first quarter of 2020. Net interest income grew 21.8% to PhP3.2 billion versus the same period last year while net service fees reached PhP458.1 million. Net Income for the first quarter of 2020 is lower by 5.1% on increased credit provisioning. Total loan portfolio as of the first quarter of this year grew by 3.6% to PhP165.0 billion coming from the strong demand in the first two months of this year prior to the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) period. This contributed to total assets growth of 1.8% year-on-year to PhP240.3 billion. Low-cost deposits improved by 10.2% reaching PhP60.6 billion. Gross non-performing loans is stable at 3.7%. PSBank’s balance sheet remains strong with capital of PhP34.8 billion. The Bank’s total Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) of 17.2% is well above the regulatory minimum of 10%. “PSBank has a strong balance sheet and capital position coming into this unprecedented situation. Cognizant of the potential impact of the pandemic to the economy, we decided to exercise prudence by increasing provisions to 150% versus previous year. During the quarantine period, the Bank continued to operate 80% of its branches while keeping in place precautionary measures to ensure that our customers and employees are safe. Both customer and IT support were further strengthened to keep our online banking services available 24/7, this being the alternative banking channel during these times,” PSBank President Jose Vicente Alde said. To assist customers during this period, the Bank put together an easy-to-use ‘Quick Customer Enquiries’ module in its website which shows information on daily branch schedules, fraud protection tips, loan payment grace periods, and how-to guides on banking services. PSBank ensured the availability of safe and convenient digital banking services for customers to still do their banking transactions: Check deposit using the PSBank Mobile Check Deposit facility launched in September 2019; Mobile and Online fund transfers via InstaPay and PESONet;  PaSend for mobile cash remittances withdrawable from over 1,000 combined PSBank and Metrobank ATMs nationwide; payment of bills via mobile or online; and 24/7 cash availability in PSBank ATMs. PSBank likewise made it easy for customers to reach the bank through various communication platforms: Chatbot “ISSA” via FB Messenger (Interactive, Speedy & Simpleng Assistant) for quick queries; “LiveChat” if customers wish to interact with our Customer Associates; and our 24/7 Customer Experience Hotline for phone-in concerns. (PR)

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PH seen losing $4.5B in cash remittances due to pandemic in ‘best-case scenario’

April 19, 2020

Money Matters

By: , The Philippines, in a best-case scenario, will likely lose some $4.5 billion (P228 billion) in cash remittance inflows from migrant Filipino workers this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ACTS-OFW Coalition of Organizations said on Sunday. “Without the pandemic, we would have expected the aggregate incoming cash transfers from Filipinos overseas to grow by $1.5 billion (or by five percent) this year,” said ACTS-OFW chairman Aniceto Bertiz III. “However, on account of the severe global economic devastation caused by the pandemic, we now project total remittances to reach only $27 billion this year, or down by $3 billion from $30 billion in 2019, assuming the best possible outcome,” Bertiz, a former member of Congress, said. Bertiz said migrant Filipino workers in the following sectors around the world are bearing the brunt of the economic destruction and job losses: ·      Shipping (both merchant and cruise operations) and shipping-related support services; ·      Aviation and aviation-related support services (including crewing operations, aircraft maintenance and catering); ·      Travel and tour operations; ·      Hotels, resorts and restaurants; ·      Gaming; and ·      Oil, gas and energy exploration and development (including related construction). “The foreign labor markets for Filipino workers – except for medical professionals and technicians – will shrink considerably this year, as the global economy declines,” Bertiz said. The collapse of crude oil prices to $20-$25 per barrel is foreseen dampening to a large extent the demand for Filipino workers – from engineers to construction workers – in the Middle East, Bertiz said. The kingdoms in the region heavily dependent oil and gas income are anticipated to spend less aggressively on new public infrastructure, according to Bertiz. “The global economic recession will also reduce the demand for Filipinos sailors as shipping traffic sinks,” Bertiz said. The Philippines is the world’s second-largest supplier of licensed ship officers and the top provider of unlicensed ship ratings or non-officer crew. Some 450,000 Filipino sailors serve on ocean-going bulk carriers, container ships, oil, gas, chemical and other product tankers, general cargo ships, pure car carriers and tugboats around the world. Global ports operator International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICSTI) earlier reported that shipping container volumes across its terminals in 20 countries fell by 10-15 percent in March alone, and are expected to decline further in April. Meanwhile, Bertiz said ACTS-OFW is counting on the government to provide financial assistance to Filipino workers overseas who have lost income under the “no work, now pay policy” of their employers. The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration last week began accepting online applications for the $200 (P10,000) cash aid for Filipino workers abroad “who have experienced job displacement due to the host country’s imposition of a lockdown or community quarantine.”

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Basa Books now open at Ayala Malls Centrio

January 15, 2021

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By: PR, Basa Books is a locally owned purveyor of brand-new books at amazing value.    The titles have been carefully selected, with the aim of satisfying a wide array of reading interests. Some of the genres in the offer include children's books, young adult fiction, contemporary fiction, classics, and fantasy. For the non-fiction aficionados, there are cookbooks, biographies, as well as books on wellness, sports, business, economics, history, and many more. There is definitely something at Basa Books for everyone.    And that’s not even the best part. What’s most exciting about Basa Books is that absolutely all of the titles are at 50% off the list price.   It’s only fitting that the first Basa Books pop-up store be launched in Cagayan de Oro City, where the brand’s founders are from. They grew up loving books and want everyone else to share that affection. This is why Basa Books is committed to providing a great selection of books and always at excellent accessible value.   “Books take you places without having to leave the safety of your home. In these trying times, we need the solace and escape that books offer more than ever,” says co-founder Atty. Maricel Seno.    The Basa Books pop-up store officially opens at Ayala Centrio Mall, Ground Floor (beside Mango) on 20th January 2021, and will be there until March 2021.

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H&i Health and Beauty YEAR END SALE

December 29, 2020

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By: , Avail our YEAR END SALE BUY 2 take 1 FREE!!! “H&i ORGANIC FOOD LINE PRODUCTS “ Organic chocolate Bar Artisan BUY 2 get 1 FREE! (w/ box&tags 150php ) *Organic Dark Chocolate bar Artisan *Organic White Chocolate bar Artisan CHOCOLATE BLEND POPCORN WITH ALMOND NUTS” *TASTE POUCH 100php *White Chocolate Blend Popcorn with Almond Nuts *DarkChocolate Blend Popcorn with Almond Nuts Thai Style Hot Sauce with two flavors and 3 sizes : *Thai Style RedHot Sauce 50ml-(100php w/o box ) 120php w/ box&tags) *Thai Style Hot&Spicy Sweet Chili Sauce150ml - (199 w/o box ) ( 220w/ box&tags) *Thai style Duo 2 flavors with box&tags -280php Open For Any Occasions #OpenForResellers#H&iNatural&Organic #YEARENDSALE #H&iProductsForLife

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Coca-Cola: Thriving together beyond 2020

December 17, 2020

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By: PR, Fear. Disruption. Uncertainty. These words perhaps best sum-up the feelings felt by all Filipinos this 2020 in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. While some sectors were somehow able to weather the resulting storm slightly better than the rest, it is the most vulnerable who truly bore the biggest brunt and suffered the most.   In the midst of the uncertainties of the present and the future, one thing was certain for Coca-Cola, that the only way to bounce back from this hurdle is to look after, and be there for each other. That exactly is what the Company focused on throughout 2020-- going beyond the challenges and ensuring the Company’s presence in people’s lives, especially those largely impacted by this crisis. And this purpose somehow defined a refreshing picture of success for a challenging year.   Beyond refreshing people to investing in the future of the PH   2020 was truly challenging but the Coca-Cola system in the Philippines remains confident that a better tomorrow awaits Filipinos. This is because the Company believes that just as how the Filipino - its employees, partners in the value chain, and communities - has fueled the domestic economy and its own growth through the years, the same indomitable spirit will inspire the country’s rebound towards a much stronger future for all.   “Coca-Cola knows how much it’s been a part of the lives of Filipinos, and we’re appreciative of how they’ve warmly embraced the brand through the years,” says Atty. Juan Lorenzo Tañada, Corporate and Regulatory Affairs Director of Coca-Cola Beverages Philippines, Inc. (CCBPI), local bottling partner of the beverage brand. “It is because of this that we reaffirm our commitment to our fellow Filipinos especially during these hard times. Rest assured we will be there for you as we collectively move towards a full and stable recovery and a better tomorrow.”   To this end, CCBPI has invested an additional $22M, or approximately PHP1.1B, in its local operations for 2020, augmenting the original $73M investment already earmarked for the year. These investments are geared towards further expanding local production while spurring much-needed job creation. Furthermore, the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability will see the establishment of a P1 billion recycling facility, PETValue Philippines, with the end in view of recycling the equivalent of every bottle it sells. Beyond providing relief to enabling a sustainable recovery for Filipinos   With the mission to continuously make a difference, Coca-Cola also set out to help communities, micro-retailers and overseas Filipinos achieve a more sustainable recovery from this year’s challenges. Recognizing the value of micro-retailers in Philippine economy and its value chain, the Company partnered with different government agencies to provide P157 million ReSTART bridge loan support fund to help 15,000 sari-sari stores and carinderia owners recover from their loss. Two hundred thousand educational posters and more were also distributed under the Safe Store movement to help micro-entrepreneurs reopen safely and with confidence, enabled by the provision of necessary financial support and business recovery knowhow together with critical information on safe store operations.   “With our expansive presence, we have a firsthand grasp of the needs of various communities,” says Jonah de Lumen-Pernia, Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability Director of Coca-Cola Philippines. “This allows us to address their needs in a manner that’s timely and responsive, and we will continue to be there to help them in the best way we can.”   Coca-Cola is likewise committed to help empower returning overseas Filipinos–drivers of the Philippine economy and truly modern-day heroes–through their OFW RISE Program and Balik Pinas Project. Through educational and financial support, most of them will be more capable of fulfilling their dreams as entrepreneurs while spending time with their families.   Part of sustainable recovery is ensuring that communities have access to clean water for health and sanitation use that’s imperative during this pandemic. Thus, Coca-Cola also provided 215 water stations to various communities in the country.   With these various support programs, those in the Company’s value chain as well as its surrounding communities are poised for a sustainable recovery, empowering them to be better prepared to withstand future calamities and challenges.   A commitment made even stronger today and beyond   Yet, in the best and worst of times, the Company has always gone beyond its role of being a beverage company—by being there for communities always ready to lend a hand, to extend support, and to ensure that even after all these crises, we will stand together with the Filipinos, stronger and even better.   From swiftly providing aid when the Taal volcano erupted to rechanneling the sizable 150-million-peso advertising budget to help address the communities’ needs in the pandemic to putting their employees’ and partners’ needs first – Coca-Cola’s story remained true to its core: how the company is always striving to go beyond good.   In taking care of their own during the height of the pandemic, Coca-Cola deployed a 2-billion-peso employee assistance fund along with additional non-monetary support that ensured the safety, good health, and well-being of Company associates across their 19 plants and 70 distribution centers in the country during the lockdown. This also ensured that operations remained unhampered, allowing for the delivery of Coca-Cola products to partners, communities, and consumers.   Meanwhile, in response to what is an extraordinary health crisis, through the Coca-Cola Foundation Philippines, the beverage brand partnered with different organizations and companies like Caritas Manila, Rise Against Hunger Philippines, Jollibee Foundation, McDonald's Philippines, PBSP, Mangyan Mission, TOWNS, PDRF, Synergeia Foundation and others in the delivery of relief goods. Through various other partnerships, the Company was able to provide 2 million liters of water to over 8000 hospitals, food packs to around 65,000 families, more than 174,000 Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to more than 51,000 frontliner across 350 institutions. The Company’s all-out support for Filipinos continued unwaveringly, even as other calamities happened. The immediate need for water was addressed, with Coca-Cola delivering an additional 100,000 liters of water, as well as food packs to affected communities; and just recently, its local bottler launched the Bangon Pinas initiative wherein they provided P3.2 million worth of support in order to help over 330 affected partners recover from the devastation . As the challenging year that is 2020 draws to a close, Coca-Cola has always been confident in the ability of the Filipino to bounce back and recover, however arduous a task this may be. As we welcome and look forward to a new year ahead, the Company reaffirms its commitment towards being there for communities, working side-by-side as we re-emerge stronger, more resilient, and together forging brighter horizons ahead.

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Emperador sees expanded growth of brandy business across the Americas next year

December 3, 2020

Billboard

By: , MANILA, Philippines – The world’s largest brandy company Emperador, Inc. is further expanding its brandy business across North and South America next year as its brandy portfolio continues to dominate market shares in several countries in this part of the world.      In the United States, volume of Don Pedro and Presidente have been growing in the last five months even as the country faces the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic. Both brandy products are part of the Casa Pedro Domecq portfolio in Mexico, which is now under Grupo Emperador Spain and currently controls 57% of the Mexican brandy market.      Don Pedro recorded ‘double digit’ volume growth particularly in Nevada, New Jersey, and Illinois while Presidente also enjoys rapid growth in Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma.      “We see brighter prospects in further growing our brandy business across the United States in 2021. Our products are now readily available in several states. Aside from Don Pedro and Presidente, we are also selling our imported brandies – Spanish-made Fundador and Philippine-made Emperador – across the US. From January to September this year, we have already increased our Fundador sales in the US by around 23% and this is a very positive signal for us,” says Juan Cortès Vilardell, chief executive officer, Grupo Emperador Spain.      In Latin America, another brandy product under Grupo Emperador Spain, Brandy Domecq, is already dominating the brandy market in Colombia with a 91% market share.      Brandy Domecq also has a strong presence across other Latin American countries, particularly in Peru, Ecuador, Chile, Panama, Aruba, and Brazil.      “Just like in Mexico where we have dominated the market share for brandy, we have also seen a steady growth in Colombia’s brandy market in the last five years. As their economy improves, more and more people are upgrading to brandy from their local white drink called Aquardiente. We remain focused on further expanding our presence across Latin America by also introducing our imported brandy products, particularly the Philippine-made Emperador Brandy, because the taste preference for brandy in this region has been remarkably growing,” Vilardell further explains.        During the first nine months of the year, Emperador’s international business boosted its net income by 11% to P5.9-billion. In the third quarter alone, the company achieved a record growth of 26% in its earnings due to the surge in the demand for its products in various overseas markets even in the middle of the pandemic.        Emperador Inc., whose brandy and whisky brands are available in more than 100 countries, is a publicly listed company at the Philippine Stock Exchange that owns Emperador Distillers, Inc., Scotch whisky maker Whyte and Mackay Group, and Bodegas Fundador in Spain.

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