Mommy bonding, appreciation at Mompreneur Awards

Michelle Ressa-Aventajado
The Mompreneur Awards celebrate motherhood and business enterprise

MOMMY GET-TOGETHER. The author [far right] with Conci Navarro of and Jackie Go of at the Mompreneur Awards. Photo courtesy of Michelle Ressa-Aventajado

MANILA, Philippines – On Sept 14, mom-entrepreneurs [aka mompreneurs] from all over the metro gathered in celebration of motherhood and business enterprise, and to honor a chosen few. Inspiring mompreneur Janice Villanueva, founder of Mommy Mundo who organized the event, brought mompreneurs together for the second annual Mompreneur Manila awards at the Blue Leaf Pavilion in Bonifacio Global City.

Inspiring talks from leading mompreneurs gave way to question-and-answer sessions with aspiring and even well-established business owners. The latter received advice and encouragement on how to nurture their growing businesses and business ideas.

INSPIRING. Mommy Mundo's Janice Villanueva and Amor Maclang. Photo by Mish Aventajado

The theme of the day was “Passion and Purpose.” PR maven Amor Maclang of Geiser Maclang shared how her business came out of a desire to make a difference in the world for her daughter and for others as well.

“Doing well means doing good, especially in a time where larger companies’ CSR [corporate social responsibility] is an afterthought,” shared Maclang. Her advice to aspiring momprenuers: find your passion, create the blueprint for your business and follow it all the way to the social good, not just for your community but for the whole country. 

Anne Arcenas-Gonzalez shared the Havaianas story and how her small business, initially based in her brother’s room, grew into a company that now represents international brands and that provides “attainable luxury” for every Filipino. 

“Staying true to your branding and sticking to the core values and service that you aim to provide can position your company for success,” Gonzalez said. “Happiness is a key component in any business.” She reminded mompreneurs that happiness is a concern not just for customers, but also for employees. She also stressed the fact that the retail market is changing because of the digital age.

Other speakers who shared their insights and experiences were power couple Aj and Audrey Dimarucot, style expert Jenni Epperson and educator Joy Abaquin.

The most exciting part of the day was when the awardees were recognized for their businesses and achievements.

Nominees for Brand and Product Innovation were:

  • Jill Borja
  • Tricia Matoto-De Santo
  • Willette Fajardo
  • Paola Loot 
  • Jackyln Zapatos

Nominees for PR and Word of Mouth Marketing were:

  • Gwendolyn Carino
  • Jeannie Castillo
  • Maricar Loriaga
  • Denise Gonzales, Noelle Hilario and Monica Manzano

Nominees for Social Mompreneurship and Advocacy were:

  • Anna Meloto
  • Jenny Ong
  • Ginger Arboleda
  • Roxanne Aquino

Nominees for Brand Positioning and Marketing were:

  • Audrey Dimarucot
  • Marivic Sulit
  • Monica Manzano and Denise Gonzales
  • Mutya Laxa Buensuceso

WINNING MOMS. Audrey Dimarucot, Jenny Ong, Paola Loot and Jeannie Castillo

The winners:



Michelle Aventajado

Michelle Ressa-Aventajado is a Filipina American who grew up in NY and now makes Manila her home. When she’s not busy raising her four children, she enjoys teaching, reading and writing about her passions. Follow her blog Momma ‘N Manila as she documents her adventures and growth in parenting.

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