Smart Launchpad names the next big Pinoy content creators
Smart Launchpad names the next big Pinoy content creators
The 3 winners will fly to LA to collaborate with international YouTube stars, Filharmonic

MANILA, Philippines – Two singers and a vlogger emerged the top winners of Smart Launchpad, a search for the country’s most promising content creators.

MJ Labenia, Lesha Litonjua, and Tops Unay got to own their passions and show their talents to the world at the recently-concluded Smart Launchpad, which was the first of its kind in the Philippines. As winners, they will be going to Los Angeles, California to collaborate with international stars and YouTube creators, Filharmonic. They also received a Samsung prize pack that includes a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Samsung Gear 360, and Samsung VR. 

The 3 were chosen from 100 finalists out of 1,537 entries from all over the Philippines.

The consolation prize winners are Eboy Fernandez and Fra Jamir, while Glenn Mark Layola won the Samsung Innovation Award for his immersive use of the Samsung Gear 360.

Smart Launchpad was a talent search and content creation program that encouraged the youth to showcase what they do best – whether it’s singing or dancing, doing make-up tutorials, sharing travel tips, or making people laugh.

To demonstrate its fast and efficient Internet, Smart took its Launchpad Upload Stations to different malls and schools all over the country. At the stations, content creators were able to record their entries on the spot and upload them on YouTube.

(READ: Smart’s Own It campaign is opening doors for YouTube careers)

Not your typical talent search

The winners were chosen after a 3-day event at First Pacific Leadership Academy in Antipolo City, which included workshops and talks facilitated by YouTube and social media experts like Carlo Ople, Enrique Cuunjieng, and Frank Aldana.

Meanwhile, YouTube creators and category experts shared their knowledge through more intimate breakout groups. The following shared their wealth of content-generating experiences: celebrity Nicole Andersson and make-up guru Michelle Dy for vlogging, choreographer Paulo Infante for dance, and recording artist Moira dela Torre for singing. 

“This is not your usual reality competition where participants fight with each other. Everyone is really happy for each other. That’s because this is your passion and you really understand one another,” Kathy Carag, Head of the Smart brand, told the participants, who also received valuable tips on how to understand and build their YouTube audience, how to monetize their channel, and how to use a Samsung 360 camera, among other aspects of their craft.

“When we launched our new logo, part of our promise and commitment was to inspire change, especially among young Filipinos. This is part of our commitment to you,” said Katrina Luna-Abelarde, Head of Wireless Consumer Operations for Smart, during the awarding ceremonies held at the end of the workshop.

Below are the winning entries by Labenia, Litonjua, and Unay. Meanwhile, check out this playlist to watch the top 100 video entries from the workshop. –

‘Di Ko Kayang Tanggapin Parody (Magbayad Ka Ng Utang) by MJ Labenia


ALL WE KNOW x PPAP (mashup) – The Chainsmokers x PIKO TARO by Lesha Litonjua


Paano Maging BARBIE Make Up Tutorial by Tops Unay

#OwnIt is about being the change you want to see. Smart empowers the youth to embrace their uniqueness and pursue their passions by using today’s technology. Know more about the campaign here.


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