business

Off-road athlete - Suzuki Grand Vitara SE

August 28, 2017

Not everyone who buys an SUV plans to take it off-road. For most of of us, just the thought of owning a vehicle that can take you through some rough spots is enough to justify spending the additional premium. Well, why not? Most of our roads, even in urban areas, are anything but smooth anyway. The Suzuki Grand Vitara may be classified as one of those “softroaders”. It is a step up from the common sedan but not as cumbersome to drive in congested areas as a chunky 4x4. It may not compare to the capability of a full-on off-roader but it has ample grunt and ground clearance to take on quite a few obstacles in its path. The Grand Vitara is propelled by a 2.393 cc, 4-cylinder gasoline engine that produces 168 hp @ 6000 rpm and 227 Nm @ 3800 rpm. The mill is matted to a 4-speed (gate-type) automatic transmission with an A/T power switch. As with most Suzukis I’ve tested, pressing this button gives you a little bit of boost when additional power is needed. With a ground clearance of 200 mm, it may not be designed to cross rivers and streams but it can certainly traverse flooded city streets during monsoon rains. Make no mistake though, this machine still allow a resonable amount of fun when you decide to wander off the beaten path. I’ve spent around 80% of the time in heavy traffic and I was able to achieve an average of 8.3 kilometers to a liter. With a fuel tank capacity of 66 liters, you would be able to do a great deal of exploring before worrying about running out of gas. In the concrete jungle, driving the Grand Vitara is a blast,handling is light and precise. Squeezing in through narrow gaps in traffic won’t be a problem, just be mindful of the large side mirrors. The ride is a bit on the firm side but the trade-off is the excellent composure when taking corners. You’ll find driving on twisty mountain roads quite entertaining. Speaking of which, this elegant compact SUV is loaded with technology to keep your passengers from boredom when stuck in traffic. It comes with an android-ready touchscreen entartainment system which not only plays music from multiple sources, you can also watch movies via DVD or USB. Heck, your kids can even sing-a-long to Moana tunes through Youtube. Morever, the auto climate control system did an amazing job of keeping all occupants comfy amidst the terrible summer heat. The Grand Vitara offers an impressive 398 liters of boot space. If all 5 seats are not going to be occupied, the split-folding second row gives way to allow a total of 758 liters of cargo space. This definitely puts the “U” in SUV. The Grand Vitara Special Edition variant you see on the photos is priced at P 1,210,000 and it comes with dual airbags, ABS with EBD and gorgeous 18-inch wheels all with disc brakes. Another variant with 17-inch wheels is available at P1,160,000 but if you are in the market for an elegantly sporty SUV, always go with more grandeur.

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Phoenix Petroleum wins in LANDBANK’s Gawad Kaagapay Awards

August 28, 2017

Phoenix Petroleum won second place as Outstanding Large Corporation II under the non-agri-based category in Land Bank of the Philippines’ Gawad Kaagapay Awards 2017 held on August 14 at Pasay City. The company was represented by Phoenix Petroleum Vice President for External Affairs, Business Development, and Security Atty. Raymond Zorrilla, Chelsea Shipping Vice President for Finance Igna Braga, and Phoenix Treasury Manager Karen Almacen. The award was given to Phoenix Petroleum for its investment in rural advancement through supporting its priority sectors such as small and medium enterprises. Part of the selection process included a visit to the oil company’s terminal in Davao City by a panel of experts and judges from LANDBANK to determine if parameters on operations, sustainability, relationship with the bank, community service, performance, and direction of the business were satisfied. The Gawad Korporasyon KAagapay sa Ating GAnap na tagumPAY (GAWAD KAAGAPAY) was launched by the Land Bank of the Philippines as a fitting accolade for its clients who have been strong partners of the bank and have been providing their significant share in community development. Recently, Phoenix Petroleum was also given an Outstanding Filipino Franchise award for the second time in the 2017 Franchise Excellence Awards.

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Isuzu joins 2017 Transport and Logistics Expo

August 25, 2017

Isuzu Philippines Corporation (IPC) participates in the 2017 Transport and Logistics Philippines slated on August 17 to 19 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City. For the three-day program, the authority on diesel-powered trucks and utility vehicles will showcase three models from their existing line-up such as the FVM34 with 32-feet Fruehauf Wing Van body, the EXR5IF tractor head and their EXZ5IK tractor head. Isuzu has been a part of the annual supply hub in the country in 2015. Since then, they have consistently participated in the event aimed to tap the transport and logistics sector, which is the market for their light, medium and up to heavy-duty trucks. This year, IPC participated as one of the major sponsors for the expo, making it their second time to extend partnership since started joining the event in 2015. IPC President Hajime Koso underscored the growth of economy in the increasing numbers of industry players. “The rise of both the conventional market and e-commerce has produced exciting numbers for budding and established industry players,” Koso said. “Such results would lead to the further development of the transport and logistics center, making all stakeholders benefit from this,” he added. Further, the IPC chief said that they are looking forward that the event would continue for the years to come and vowed to be part of the transport and logistics expo as it is a great avenue to all concerned stakeholders where possible clienteles meet. “Events like these provide the much-needed assistance to the buyers, an additional boost on opportunities for industry giants and level the playing field for the new entrants,” he explained. The 2017 Transport and Logistics Philippines is a trade show for supply chain solutions, and has been growing steadily as the needs of the market continuously increases. Buyers can keep themselves up-to-date on the latest products, equipment, and solutions that is set to keep their businesses ahead of the competition.

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Yamaha offers more benefits to Yclub members

August 25, 2017

Yamaha Motor Philippines Inc. has built an incredible community for riders where they can thrive through their passion and dedication for riding. The Yamaha Club began with a special discount privilege for all their members and this 2017, they have created a rewards system to give their riders a greater level of exclusivity. During their recent press conference at the Y-ZONE, they announced that the purchase of any Yamaha Club member of any Yamaha parts,Apparel, Yamalube, and Helmets will now have an equal amount of points which they can exchange for premium items or an inclusion to a special Yclub event. Also, it was the introduction of the sponsors of the club. The Consumer Care Products Incorporated, Petron Corporation, FDR Tires, and Racing Boy. They stated that the involvement of their brand is not only a testment to their dedication to Yamaha Club riders but also the fusion of innovation between the companies. Yamaha Motor Philippines Inc. Sales and Marketing Director Kaoru Ogura alongside Marketing Section Senior Manager, Ryan Jude Camus led the official contract signing and a celebratory toast that marked the beginning of great things for the Yamaha Club.

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2nd quarter growth rates point to economic headwinds

August 25, 2017

INDEPENDENT research group IBON said that the recently released 2017 second quarter national accounts underscore the serious headwinds facing the Philippine economy. The group said that the Duterte administration should focus on building sustainable domestic foundations of growth and development rather than depend on external factors such as remittances, cheap labor business process outsourcing (BPO), and foreign investments. The Philippines reported growth in gross domestic product (GDP) of 6.5% in the second quarter of 2017 which is slower than the 7.1% election-boosted growth in the same period last year. This meant slower 6.4% growth in the first semester of 2017 compared to 7.0% in the first semester of 2016. Agricultural and manufacturing growth in the second quarter and first semester of 2017 was higher than in the equivalent periods last year. This was however not enough to off-set the marked slowdown in services which slowed to 6.1% in the second quarter (from 8.2% last year) and to 6.4% in the first semester as a whole (from 7.9% last year). IBON noted the slowdown in overseas remittances and slackening of BPO investments. Remittance growth has been falling from its recent peak of 8.2% in 2010 to 4.4% in 2016, and was only marginally higher at 4.7% as of the end of the first semester of 2017. Data from the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) show that PEZA-registered Information Technology-Business Process Management (IT-BPM) investments fell by almost 35% to Php7.1 billion in January-May 2017 from Php10.9 billion for the same period last year. These slowdowns likely dampened demand for consumer goods and services and lessened private construction activity, which further decreased trade, transport, communications and finance activity. Government construction spending was also significantly slower. Overall construction growth slowed to 6.3% from 13.5% in the second quarter of 2016. IBON said that the slowdown highlights the dependence of growth on short-term bursts of real estate and construction spending. It is however more important to create the foundations for long-term sustained growth. This means more equitable and solid rural development, beginning with real agrarian reform, and developing high value-added Filipino manufacturing with national industrialization. IBON also noted that economic growth remains exclusionary and has done little to relieve the country’s jobs crisis and chronic poverty. Official labor statistics show that the number of employed Filipinos decreased by 393,000 to 40.3 million in April 2017 from 40.7 million in the same period last year. Meanwhile, poor quality of work persists with 15.6 million or 38.7% of employed in the informal sector or unpaid family work so far in 2017. IBON said that the Philippine economy will stay on the path of exclusionary growth and underdevelopment should the Duterte administration still implement neoliberal market-driven policies. To arrest the long-term economic slowdown, the government must take on policies that will aggressively develop domestic agriculture and Filipino industries. Source: IBON.org

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ACE HARDWARE ELEVATED TO PRA’S HALL OF FAME

August 25, 2017

ACE Hardware, the one stop shop for the latest home improvement solutions, was recently elevated to the Hall of Fame in the Foreign Brand Retailer – Home Improvement Category during the Philippine Retailer’s Association’s 20th Outstanding Filipino Retailers & Shopping Centers of the Year Awards at the Grand Ballroom of Solaire Resort and Casino. ACE Hardware, one of the leading hardware stores in the United States, opened its first franchise in the Philippines at SM Southmall, Las Piñas in 1997. Since then, it has grown to become one of the country’s leading home hardware chains with more than 150 ACE Hardware branches nationwide and still growing. ACE Hardware carries a wide range of hardware products and power tools, electrical and plumbing equipment, paints and sundries, building materials, outdoor equipment, and items for the car and the house. It also has a lawn and garden section for gardening needs and a pet section for the animal lovers. This is the third- time ACE has been honored with a PRA Award, thus elevating it into Hall of Fame status. Others include the OFR-Category Killer Award in 2013 and OFR-Best Home Improvement Center Award in 2015. Philippine Retailers Association has over 400 member companies, covering a wide scope of the distribution chain, in its fold — from retailers, mall and shopping center operators to traders/suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, and wholesalers, among others. PRA’s annual search for the Outstanding Filipino Retailers seeks to recognize Filipino retailers who have epitomized the model of a successful retailer in terms of growth and good ethical business practices.

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