11 Filipino women entrepreneurs cited as agents of change

11 Filipino women entrepreneurs cited as agents of change
The challenge remains for women to take – and be given – more roles in the higher echelons of the society, says UP small-scale industries professor Nestor Rañeses

MANILA, Philippines – Eleven women who have contributed to societal change through their small to medium-sized businesses were honored on Friday, March 6, by  the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE).

Through its “Go Negosyo” advocacy, PCE feted them during the 7th Filipina Entrepreneurship Summit for “best personifying the modern Filipina attitude and leading their enterprises toward success.”

The Go Negosyo Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs 2015 honorees are:

  • Myrna Bituin, for her commitment in showcasing Philippine crafts and furniture via the internationally renowned Betis Crafts Incorporated
  • Celinda de Guia, for bringing world-class entertainment and international artists Incubus, Sting, and Bon Jovi to the Filipino audiences through her company, Ovation Productions
  • Roxanne Farillas, for fusing homegrown Filipino fashion trends with international ones through her company’s Plains and Prints’ wildly successful pieces
  • Kathleen Go, for promoting and advancing Original Pinoy Music (OPM) through Universal Records
  • Emma Imperial, for changing the standard of Filipino living and attitude toward environment protection through her company, Imperial Homes Corporation, the firm that builds low-cost energy efficient houses
  • Mary Lizabeth Lu, for advancing creative developers, programmers, and writers as well as comics-making and literary art. Her company Komikasi Games and Entertainment produces award-winning “advergames.”
  • Rizalina Mantaring, for her outstanding leadership of Sun Life Financial Group of Companies. Mantaring serves as the chairman and CEO in the Philippines for the 120- year-old financial services company.
  • Josephine See, for transforming traditional Filipino snack food through modern franchising concepts and providing a tested business franchise model via her company, Peanut World
  • Stella Sy, for providing quality and affordable clothing lines for fashion-savvy Filipinos through her company, Mint, which won the the Outstanding Filipino Retailer Award in 2013
  • Patis Tesoro, for redefining “Filipiniana” and making it globally-known by helping the local crafts industry along the way
  • Fe Vidal, a former migrant worker who is transforming locally-bred milkfish into high-value products through her firm, CBN Boneless Bangus, and at the same time helping the community by making it the firm’s main supplier 

Special lifetime achievement awards were conferred to National Bookstore founder Socorro Ramos and Vibal Publishing’s Esther Vibal.

Special awards were also given to Nanette Po of Friends of Hope Incorporated and Menchie de Guzman of Gantsilyo/Lomboy Ventures & Holdings Corporation.

Nestor Rañeses, director of the Institute for Small-scale Industries, University of the Philippines-Diliman, said that while there are 60% of women running micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises, the challenge remains for women to take – and be given – more roles in the higher echelons of the society.

Senator Loren Legarda stressed the need for more convergence between the networks of women in business and the public. “We can see the difference that these women are making and there is greater need in the levels of awareness for what they are doing,” she said. – Rappler.com

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