Tuesday, April 30, 2024

LCF gears up for technology-focused CSR Conference and Expo 2024

To help corporates bring about an Inclusive Future through harnessing CSR and ESG

The League of Corporate Foundations (LCF) has made it their mission to assist corporations in utilizing technology for the good of society through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) reporting, in light of the swift advances and innovations in technology, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI). 

LCF is gearing up for the 2024 CSR Conference and Expo—the highly anticipated annual event—which will take place on July 3 to 4 at Dusit Thani Manila, Makati City. 

LCF gears up for technology-focused CSR Conference and Expo 2024

This year's CSR Expo, with the aptly named "Reimagining a New and Inclusive Future," will focus on technology, artificial intelligence, and digitalization. It will also examine how corporations can apply CSR and ESG principles to make these technologies truly inclusive. The purpose of this event is to assist corporations in making sure that technology has more positive effects than negative ones in order to help the 51% of Filipinos who live in poverty.

Corporates will also have the chance to learn about and have a conversation about the ways in which artificial intelligence (AI) and other cutting-edge technologies can advance health services, resilience, livelihood, education, financial diversity, and inclusivity, among other societal and national development goals, at the LCF CSR Expo.

“The 2024 Conference will imagine a future where people and communities can harness the power of technology, AI, and the digital space, including the careful implementation of AI and other new technologies to form a truly new and inclusive future if aligned with CSR and ESG principles at the outset.” ~Sebastian C. Quiniones, LCF Chair and Executive Director, Pilipinas Shell Foundation, Inc.

A venue for cross-sectoral collaboration

Over 200 participants are anticipated at the 2024 CSR Expo, including corporates, social development actors, and technology companies who will collaborate to co-create solutions with the goal of making a significant and collective impact. 

“The League’s stand is that technological innovations can be properly harnessed, such that their ill effects upon society can be mitigated; and that technology offers an abiding opportunity for corporate collaboration, whether between corporates or with other sectors, to achieve monumental and lasting impact upon societal challenges both new and old.” ~Shem Jose W. Garcia, LCF Vice-Chair and Executive Director, Vivant Foundation, Inc.  

Outstanding CSR initiatives

LCF is also set to announce the winners of the 2024 Guild Awards on the evening of July 3 at Dusit Thani Manila. The awards program upholds exemplary CSR initiatives undertaken by  LCF members.

In order to recognize their efforts and hard work in their local communities, the League will also be giving non-members the CSR Medal of Recognition for the first time. The Medal of Recognition honors non-member organizations' interventional efforts, such as those of Rotary, Kiwanis, Chambers of Commerce, Jaycees, and Top 1000 businesses, among others. Businesses in seven thematic areas—Arts and Culture, Disaster Resilience, Education, Environment, Enterprise Development, Financial Inclusion, and Health—will be honored with this special award for their efforts. 

A concurrent exhibit of the 2024 CSR Expo will be held from July 4 to 5 at the Glorietta Activity Center. It will feature excellent CSR initiatives that have been carried out by both LCF members and non-members. The exhibit must include at least fifty exhibitors. At the end of the exhibit, there will also be a Medal of Recognition Awarding Ceremony. 

Established in 1991, LCF is a network of operating and grant-making corporate and family foundations and corporations in the Philippines. The League has continued to be at the forefront of promoting and enhancing CSR practice among its members and the larger business community in the country. Visit the LCF homepage at lcf.org.ph and the 2024 Conference and Expo microsite at bit.ly/2024CSRExpo

Meet the Agonsulits: The Squad That Eats Together, Stacks Savings Together with McDelivery

Meet the Agonsulits: The Squad That Eats Together, Stacks Savings Together with McDelivery

Every day becomes a #SavingsGoals celebration in the Agoncillo home, where the living is smart and the vibes are laid back. Ryan and Judy Ann are joined by their daughter Luna. A family known as the "Agonsulits" demonstrates to us that being thrifty need not be a drag. It's all about living big without going over budget and demonstrating that you can stay true to your values while making stylish yet affordable decisions.

Imagine spending some time with your family and the great outdoors while lounging by a serene lakeside. Nothing fancy, just some quality time spent the old-fashioned way. That is the fashion of Agonsulit. And in terms of do-at-home tricks? Ryan is an expert at it. Ryan didn't go to the dentist right away when little Luna had a wiggly tooth, as evidenced by a recent viral post. Nope, he simply pulled out some dental floss and turned the dentist gently, demonstrating that sometimes the simplest—and least expensive—solutions are the best ones. 

Public transportation is a mobile classroom as well as a means of transportation. According to Judy Ann, Yohan, their oldest daughter, learns life lessons not only in lecture halls but also on buses and jeepneys, where she discovers the truth about money and the daily routines of the average person. This is more than just useful to the Agonsulits; it's a means of maintaining a sense of identity and rootedness.

The topic of money is never off the table in the Agoncillo household. Ryan and Judy Ann ensure that everyone understands how money works and why saving is important by having honest conversations about cash flow. It's about laying the groundwork for a bright and safe future, where everyone benefits from every decision made together.

"We believe in being smart with our resources, which means finding quality options that are also affordable. Wais kaming mag-asawa pagdating sa pamilya. Gusto namin mataas na kalidad at murang-mura para sulit. Kaya nga Agonsulit di, ba? (We're wise when it comes to family spending. We want high quality for low cost because that’s what makes it worthwhile. That’s why they call us Agonsulit, right?). Malaking ginhawa ang experience namin sa McDelivery. Sulit talaga! (The experience we have with McDelivery is truly comforting. It’s really worth it!). It’s not just about ordering food; it’s about the convenience, variety, and affordability that it brings to our family's table. Teaching our kids to budget through apps like McDelivery makes money management relatable and real.~Judy Ann Santos-Agoncillo

McDelivery is their go-to food when the munchies strike because it offers big flavors without the big price tag. "McDelivery isn't just quick food; it's smart eating. It's about getting our favorite meals without the guilt," says Judy Ann, a chef with keen insight. The app is a mainstay on their phones, full of offers that keep every meal interesting and affordable.

Level up your hangout game the Agonsulit way with the McDelivery App. Movie night magic happens with the Chicken McNuggets Family Bundle (Php599), composed of 20 McNuggets, BFF fries, and three Coke Floats. It’s a blockbuster deal without the blockbuster prices. Whether you’re Team Big Mac or all about that Quarter Pounder life, the Burgers Family Bundle (Php699) covers all bases with burgers, fries, and Coke floats to please the crew. Feeding the whole squad? The Chicken McShare Family Bundle (Php799) brings the feast with chicken, spaghetti, and Coke floats, making sure no one’s left hungry. These aren’t just meals, however, they’re meal savers, making sure the family eats like kings on a jester’s budget. 

In this fam, even the kids are in on the budgeting game. Using apps isn’t just for snaps and laughs; it’s for learning the ropes of digital pesos and cents. 

McDelivery App Instructions 
  1. Download the McDelivery App in iOS or Google Play. 
  2. In the App, enter the delivery address and confirm your location. 
  3. Choose the delivery option: Delivery, Pick-up or Send to Many. 
  4. Confirm the delivery time: Now or Schedule for Later
  5. Confirm your location.
  6. Order from the Menu, Review your order and click Proceed to Checkout.
  7. Double check the Recipient Details, Delivery Address, Payment Method and Order  Summary. Scroll down and click Apply Promo Coupon to avail of free delivery fees.
  8. Choose payment option: Debit/Credit Card, GCash, PayMaya or Cash-on-Delivery. Click  Place Order when final.
  9. Proceed to payment. Delivery order is completed once payment has been made.
  10. Monitor your order in the app.
  11. Receive your order within the scheduled time. 

For those new to the McDelivery experience, there’s an extra treat: first-time users can score a free six-piece Chicken McNuggets with a minimum order of PHP 500. And it gets even better — all users enjoy free delivery with a minimum order of just PHP 450, making it easier and more affordable to indulge in your favorite meals.

Why not roll like the Agonsulits and turn your next mealtime into a major win? Check out the McDelivery app and snag those family bundles. As Ryan puts it, “Grab the app, pick your fave deals, and watch how you can feast without the fuss. Let’s make those meal moments epic and economical.”

So, when you’re feeling the munchies, remember it’s all about smart choices and chill vibes. Swipe into McDelivery and switch up your meal game—where every bite is about living large without spending big.

Get ready for the TCL Anniversary Aircon Promo Just in Time for Summer!

Get ready for the TCL Anniversary Aircon Promo Just in Time for Summer!

The biggest price slash off this season is here!

With summer quickly approaching, there's no better way to celebrate than indulging in a refreshing treat for yourself.  Leading consumer electronics brand TCL is launching its anniversary promotion for the air conditioning category to celebrate the start of summer. Yes, you did hear correctly! TCL is offering the largest savings on their selection of air conditioners, and the substantial savings you can obtain will undoubtedly astound you.  

“We are happy to give you this exciting anniversary treat for everyone.  We’re giving a big slash off to our air conditioning units, as we aim to provide our customers with the ultimate cooling solutions for their homes.” ~Mr. Loyal Cheng, TCL Chief Executive Officer 

Take note, TCL is giving significant discounts on two of their popular air conditioning units namely the CoolPro UV Connect+ and CoolPro Quiet+. Hold on to your seats and dig these irresistible deals on ACs.  

For the CoolPro UV Connect+ Air Conditioners, TAC-10CSD/ME12 - 1.0 HP, from SRP of PHP 38,995 to discounted price of PHP 19,995; TAC-13CSD/MEI2 - 1.5 HP from SRP of PHP 40,495 to discounted price of PHP 21,495; TAC-19CSD/MEI2 - 2.0 HP from SRP of PHP 55,495 to discounted price of PHP 30,995 and TAC-25CSD/ME12 - 2.5 HP from SRP of PHP 63,495 to discounted price of PHP 33,995. 

For the CoolPro Quiet+ Air Conditioners, TAC-09CWI/UJE from SRP of PHP 29,995 to discounted price of PHP 18,995 and TAC-09CWI/UJE from SRP of PHP 32,995 to discounted price of PHP 20,995. 

Not only that, but this summer get ready for the biggest AC launch ever. Prepare to welcome the CoolPro | FreshIN 2.0 Inverter Fresh Air Conditioner, which will transform home comfort. 

“In just a few days, we are launching our CoolPro | FreshIN 2.0 Inverter Fresh Air Conditioner. It has advanced features and benefits set to change the game in air conditioning units from its innovations and enhanced designs. We’re all excited for it!” ~Mr. Joseph Cernitchez, TCL Brand Manager 

The TCL Anniversary Promo runs starting March 10 until May 31, 2024.  For more information, please visit TCL’s official Facebook page or check out the TCL website at https://www.tcl.com/ph/en.

About TCL Philippines:
TCL Electronics (HKG:1070) is a fast-growing consumer electronics company and a leading player in the global TV industry. Founded in 1981, it now operates in over 160 markets globally. TCL specializes in the research, development, and manufacturing of consumer electronics products ranging from TVs, audio, and smart home appliances. Visit the TCL home page at https://www.tcl.com/ph/en.

Witness the Future: The TCL C6 QLED Pro Brings a Revolution in Visual Quality

TCL C6 QLED Pro set to give Quantum Leap in Picture Quality

One of the top two TV brands in the world and a leading manufacturer of consumer electronics, TCL is excited to announce the impending release of its newest innovation, the next-generation C series TV. 

Give way to the upcoming May 8 launch of the TCL C 6 QLED Pro Series, which promises a revolutionary advancement in color display technology.  Its amazing, inventive highlights will enthrall you as they redefine picture quality.

“We are very happy to announce the coming of the new TCL C6 QLED Pro  Series.  With its exceptional features and state-of-the-art technology, you can be assured that the C6 Series is definitely worth the wait!.” ~Joseph Cernitchez, TCL Brand Manager 

Leading the upcoming launch of the TCL C6 QLED Pro Series is none other than Kathryn Bernardo, a highly sought-after local actress and TCL brand ambassador!  She'll be kicking things off in style as the star of an engrossing digital video commercial. Stay tuned so you don't miss the excitement!

A Higher Quality TV

Building upon the success of the beloved C645 model, this upgrade promises to redefine home entertainment. All shades are brought to life with unmatched depth and brightness on the TCL C655 QLED Pro TVs, providing you with comfort and quality that you will undoubtedly immerse yourself in. 

This TCL C655 TV the T-Screen Pro is an innovative piece of technology that successfully highlights greater and more accurate contrast while eliminating ambient light interference and image halo, resulting in a beautiful picture quality that is crisper and more detailed. 

The TCL C6 QLED Pro Series isn't just a TV, it's an extension of your personal style.  With its sleek design, it seamlessly integrates into any room, transforming your home into a reflection of your unique aesthetic. Experience the perfect blend of cutting-edge technology and timeless design.

Experience a new level of delight with TCL C655 QLED Pro Series TV's hitting the stores soon. For more updates on TCL's C6 Series, log on to https://www.tcl.com/ph/en.

About TCL Philippines:
TCL Electronics (HKG:1070) is a fast-growing consumer electronics company and a leading player in the global TV industry. Founded in 1981, it now operates in over 160 markets globally. TCL specializes in the research, development, and manufacturing of consumer electronics products ranging from TVs, audio, and smart home appliances. Visit the TCL home page at https://www.tcl.com/ph/en

Thursday, April 25, 2024

Asians like talking about their snacks

The fifth annual State of Snacking report has been released by Mondelēz International, a leading snacking company in the Philippines that is responsible for well-known brands like Oreo, Tiger biscuits, Cadbury Dairy Milk, Toblerone, Tang, Eden Cheese, and Cheez Whiz. Every year, a worldwide analysis of consumer patterns is released, providing insights into the preferences of consumers when it comes to choosing snacks. As part of Mondelēz International's mission to shape the future of snacking, the report was produced in association with The Harris Poll, one of the leading public opinion think tanks in the United States. 

The Evolving Consumer Mindset and Mindful Snacking
The results of this year's report indicate that, in comparison to five years ago, consumers are now more aware of mindfulness. Specifically, data indicates that, 64% of consumers are more aware of their levels of hunger or fullness, and 57% are more aware of the time and pace at which they enjoy snacking. As part of empowering consumers to snack right, Mondelēz International promotes the following to be more mindful in snacking:
• Knowing what you want and need emotionally and functionally.
• Being aware of your portion size and moderating it.
• Enjoying and appreciating your snacks with all senses (e.g., taste, feel, smell).
• Being present in the moment and avoiding distractions while snacking.
• Being aware of your hunger, fullness, and satisfaction.
• Reflecting on your whole eating experience.

In keeping with these suggestions, the survey finds that consumers are agreeing to snack more deliberately and realizing that they can contribute to a healthy diet in order to achieve a number of perceived health benefits, including increasing energy (75%), enhancing mood (74%), and consuming snacks that help them reach their fitness objectives (70%). 

Snacking Curation 
In addition, the State of Snacking report demonstrates that consumers, particularly those in the Asia Pacific region, still prioritize snacks. Compared to 74% of global consumers overall, 8 out of 10 (8/10) Asian consumers report actively discussing their snacking preferences within their circles.

In addition to how consumers curate their snacking habits, the report discovered that social media is a major factor in defining Asians' snacking habits. Asian consumers are more likely than other consumers to use social media to learn more about snacking (66% vs. 56% overall).

Snacking with Purpose
Additionally, consumers are choosing their snacks more carefully; according to over two thirds of them, they frequently select brands that reflect their values, such as the snack brands from Mondelēz International that support environmental priorities. This is particularly true in light of the finding that 67% of respondents to a survey of consumers said they give preference to snacks with less plastic packaging.

“Purpose has always been at the core of our business. Aside from leading the future of snacking, we’re also in the business of providing the right snack, for the right moment, and made the right way. We’re proud of our work here at Mondelēz International. Our role of providing consumers with their household favorites while being able to contribute to our collective duty to help the world is the reason our colleagues work tirelessly every day.” ~Aleli Arcilla, Mondelēz International’s Managing Director in the Philippines

Mondelēz International has implemented measures to enhance diversion systems in its operational areas and reduce its usage of packaging, all in line with the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Law. The company collected and diverted all of its post-consumer plastic packaging in 2023 alone, going above and beyond what was required by the EPR Law.

To learn more about the State of Snacking, the report is published and available at Mondelēz International’s website: www.mondelezinternational.com/stateofsnacking.

About Mondelēz International
Mondelēz International, Inc. (Nasdaq: MDLZ) empowers people to snack right in over 150 countries around the world with 2023 net revenues of approximately $36 billion, MDLZ is leading the future of snacking with iconic global and local brands such as OREO, belVita and LU biscuits; Cadbury Dairy Milk, Milka and Toblerone chocolate; Sour Patch Kids candy and Trident gum. Mondelēz International is a proud member of the Standard and Poor’s 500, Nasdaq 100, and Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Visit www.mondelezinternational.com or follow the company on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MDLZ.
About Mondelez Philippines 
Mondelez Philippines, Inc. has been providing consumers with delicious snack products for the past 61 years - since 1963. Its product portfolio includes Tang powdered beverages, Eden cheese, mayonnaise and sandwich spread, Cheez Whiz spread, Oreo cookies, Tiger energy biscuits, as well as Toblerone and Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolates. The company employs about 450 people in the Philippines, with a manufacturing facility in Parañaque City. Visit https://ph.mondelezinternational.com/home.

Ivana Alawi on loving the 100W fast-charging, living free with Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G

With 100W Fast Charge + 20W Wireless Charge, Ivana is able to charge the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G at rapid speeds to watch content, take selfies, and more.

Ivana Alawi is not shy to share her life on the internet. The 27-year-old beauty has more than 17 million subscribers on YouTube, making her one of the most popular vloggers in the Philippines. She is also active on Instagram, where she gives her 10 million followers glimpses into her personal and professional lives.

Ivana manages to live freely even with her hectic schedule of producing content and filming TV shows like Batang Quiapo. Her dependable Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G smartphone is the reason behind everything.

“I do everything on my phone, as in! I have meetings on my phone and read comments on my posts. I also watch a lot of other creators’ content and my own TV shows. Kaya sobrang ganda ng Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G because I can do all of this. Gusto ko talaga yung fast charging. I always shoot videos and take photos on my phone, kaya lagi akong lowbatt. With the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G, I can use it kahit naka-charge sya kasi meron din syang MagCase and MagPad. I’m so happy that I was able to try the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G and I loved it. It’s very affordable and has really high specs, so I recommend this to anyone who relies on their phone for their everyday tasks. ~Ivana Alawi

The innovative 20W Wireless Charge and 100W All-Round Fast Charge 2.0 of the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro Series are meant to power up users' lives. Ivana, the newest brand ambassador for Infinix, will love these features because they allow her to quickly charge her phone anytime the battery runs low. She can charge to 50% with Hyper Mode in just 8 minutes.

YouTube vlogger and actress Ivana Alawi has everything on her phone. Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G’s fast charging lets her live freely and worry-free.

In addition to being fast-charging, the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G is great for content creation and streaming. Ivana claims that her 32MP front camera and clear 108MP main camera are "very helpful for my selfies and vlogs," and that checking her shots and watching content in high-definition 1080p quality is made easier by the phone's 3D-Curved 120Hz AMOLED Display Corning® Gorilla® Glass.

To ensure smooth operation, the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G is powered by a Dimensity 7020 5G Chipset processor with up to 24GB Extended RAM. It's a great accessory for taking outfit photos because of its fashionable colorways, Obsidian Black and Vintage Green.

Ivana is pleased and appreciative that she has discovered a smartphone that can keep up with her hectic schedule and allows her to live her life without being hindered by persistent battery problems. Infinix has become so popular that her family has also begun to use it.

She adds that it’s also great for travelers like her because they can be fully charged while touring for hours.

Starting April 25, 2024the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G is available for only P13,999 on ShopeeLazadaTikTok Shop and Infinix kiosks while the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro 4G is exclusively available on Shopee for only P10,999.
Infinix fans can also avail of special promo prices on the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro Series’ launch day. The Infinix NOTE 40 Pro+ 5G will be priced at P11,499 (from P13,999) via Shopee, Lazada, and TikTok Shop. While the Infinix NOTE 40 Pro 4G will be a Shopee-exclusive, retailing for P8,799 (from P10,999). First 100 buyers can get an S1 smartwatch or XE23 Earphones for free. (Limited stocks only)
For more information and promo updates, make sure to follow Infinix Philippines’ Facebook page and Facebook Community.

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Farming futures

Modern farming methods increase yields for some farmers, but many Filipino farmers are still unable to keep up. These seasoned workers are clinging to tried-and-true, frequently ineffective techniques that have been passed down through the generations as they find themselves falling behind in a market that demands increased output.

Jayson Garcia, a Pampanga farmer, aimed to challenge the dominant narrative within his family. He was aware that, in the quickly changing world of contemporary agriculture, he would need to innovate and set a new direction for his farm in order to stay competitive.

“Noon, mahirap ang magtanim,” he recalled their life before joining SM Foundation’s Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan. “Para bang tsambahan, basta pag itinanim mo ‘yan, hintayin mo na lang mamunga. Mas mahirap pa lalo kapag nagkaroon ng kalamidad.” ~Jayson Garcia, One farmer from Pampanga

Garcia's training program at SM Foundation, which concentrated on cultivating high-value crops, was the turning point he needed to restore his farming methods. These included choosing the best seeds, taking care of them, and planning planting dates in advance.

Jayson attends the SM City Clark’s Weekend Market to observe best practices and gain insights into new agricultural techniques.

Through the livelihood program, he was also able to find new sales channels that increased his earning potential and allowed him to charge his customers fairly. Because of his increased knowledge and self-assurance, he was able to grow his farm and raise his monthly income to over Php25,000.

In addition to selling his harvests directly, he is currently growing a range of vegetables on his farm, such as madre de cacao, lemongrass, and malunggay, which he sells online to small companies that turn the produce into other goods.

Embracing new techniques
Juanito Dela Cruz, a KSK farmer from Pampanga, also shares the same story of hope. He actively pursued and embraced contemporary farming methods despite his advanced age. Building on his recent achievements, he encouraged others to try new things and discussed the value of flexibility for farmers.

Juanito's earnings increased from Php10,000 per month to approximately Php30,000 per week. This increase was primarily due to his participation in the Weekend Market at SM City Clark.

“Kailangan maging bukas tayo sa makabagong pamamaraan ng pagsasaka para makahabol tayo sa demands ng panahon ngayon—ito ang itinuo sa akin ng SM Foundation-KSK.” ~Juanito Dela Cruz, KSK farmer from Pampanga

Jayson and Juanito are two of the approximately 30,000 Filipino farmers whose lives have been transformed by the SM Group's KSK program. Farmers who had given up thanks to its initiatives were able to adopt contemporary farming methods and become more adaptive in the face of the changing agricultural landscape.

The SM Group is unwavering in its dedication to advancing social good through the SM Foundation. This commitment continues to SM's upcoming initiatives, which will be spearheaded by its planned smart city real estate development, with an emphasis on boosting beneficial social impact in the areas in which SM operates.

All within 15 minutes: Urban planning concept city to rise in Pasay

An artist’s render of a 15-minute city, where work, food, housing, education and cultural activities are easily within reach.

For the modern urban dweller, 15 minutes is a lot of time.

In just fifteen minutes, you can accomplish a lot of worthwhile tasks, like meditate, clear your email, jog a 1.5-kilometer route, perform high-intensity interval training (HITT), read the news, and make a smoothie.

However, 15 minutes is hardly enough time for a commuter in Metro Manila to get from point A to point B. You have probably not moved an inch in this time, especially during rush hour.

Do you know about the 15-minute city? It's a contemporary idea for urban planning that prioritizes both people and the environment. The phrase was first used by urbanist and Sorbonne University professor Carlos Moreno of Paris. He stated that the perfect neighborhood or city is one in which jobs, dining, housing, entertainment, and educational opportunities are all conveniently located within a 15-minute walk or by bike.

An artist’s rendition of a soon-to-rise 15-minute city in Pasay

Less carbon emissions, cheaper transportation costs, and—above all—happier and healthier individuals are guaranteed by this. No more standing in line for hours at the EDSA bus carousel or in the middle of traffic for hours at a time.

After many years of careful planning and design, the project has finally been given the go-ahead by the government to move forward. Rep. Joey Salceda of the Albay 2nd district, in fact, emphasized how the government anticipates obtaining billions of dollars' worth of real estate assets from the Pasay-led project.

Revenues from the project will generate a massive multiplier effect on our gross domestic product (GDP) and an estimated 300,000 new jobs from 2027 to 2040. By 2035, it is projected to employ 4% of the National Capital Region’s (NCR) total work force.

The Pasay 360 Project will be a city that nurtures lives and livelihood, is expected to revitalize the economy, and hone the next generation of Filipino leaders. It can be a source of pride for Filipinos as we push towards the 22nd century.

Filipinos love concerts, but venue infrastructure gaps are a threat to the experience

FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 held in SM Mall of  Asia Arena – Photo from SM MOA Arena official website

Better, larger, and more competitive concert venues have benefited economies, particularly in light of the significant and widespread impact of well-known international acts on consumer behavior and spending, such as Coldplay's World Tour and pop sensation Taylor Swift's Eras Tour.

The success of these concerts attracted tens of thousands of 'Swifties' and concertgoers, and it stimulated the global economy, especially that of Southeast Asian nations like Singapore and Japan. While some Filipino fans traveled to Sydney's Accor Stadium and Tokyo Dome in Australia, others had to spend a lot of money and travel far to see the superstar Swift perform exclusively at Singapore's National Stadium. The massive concert gigs greatly benefited the entertainment, hospitality, retail, and transportation industries, as well as the economies of the respective countries.

Photo credit to Stanley Quek. An empty Singapore National Stadium, viewed from the front stage.

While Singapore’s strategy for a Southeast Asia exclusive Swift performance piqued interest and likewise piqued its neighboring countries, the strategic move sparked conversations and brought to light what the Philippines can improve on in terms of concert venues.

1. Location is key
The Philippines doesn’t lack in big venues. In fact, it boasts of venues that can rival Singapore’s National Stadium and Japan’s Tokyo Dome. Accessibility to the location as well as public
transportation and nearby commercial establishments are key.

2. Concert Experience
The National Stadium, the pride of Singapore, boasts cutting-edge features including the largest free-spanning dome in the world, a retractable roof, and comfort cooling technology for the comfort of spectators. Its creativity, advantageous location, and effectiveness provide enthusiasts and concertgoers with positive and immersive experiences, drawing entertainment acts from around the globe. Filipino concertgoers hope that their nation can imitate a similar venue and concert experience.

3. World-class concert amenities and facilities
For concertgoers or sports fans, the venue's amenities and facilities should provide an excellent musical experience or ease of access during a sporting event.

Architectural “Eyecon” SM Mall of Asia Arena prides itself on having exceptional world-class amenities unique in the Southeast Asia region. –Photo from SM MOA Arena official website

FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 held in SM Mall of  Asia Arena – Photo from SM MOA Arena official website

Consider the SM Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena, a versatile indoor arena that was built in 2012 by SM Prime, a renowned integrated property developer. It has been a popular venue for a variety of events and provides a distinctive concert experience. It has been a refuge for exhilarating sporting events, amazing OPM shows, and unforgettable international superstar performances, with 20,000 seats in the house.

Concurrently, the SMDC Festival Grounds in Parañaque City are a massive open-air venue that can hold a minimum of 50,000 attendees. Among the acts that have recently graced the stage are Rivermaya The Reunion and Ed Sheeran's Mathematics Tour.

4. Achieving Filipinos’ concert dreams
One of SM Prime's most ambitious plans is to build a 360-hectare smart city, which is intended to serve as the focal point of the nation's sporting and entertainment events. With a larger capacity and better venue infrastructure, it is expected to draw legendary figures from the entertainment industry and rival the best in Southeast Asia and the world. It will have a concert arena and stadium with an estimated 70,000 seats that are connected to Central Park, one of the island's top tourist destinations. With top-notch amenities and environmentally friendly features that match those of major concert venues across the globe, the expansive arena is intended to be the largest concert venue in the Philippines. When that is constructed, Filipinos won't need to travel abroad to see elite performances because they can do so from the comfort of their home country.

An artist’s render, visual sketch of the proposed concert venue at Pasay 360 project.

Pinoy's unquestionably breathe entertainment shows. Given how enthusiastic we are about concerts, Visa, a digital payments company, reports that Filipinos spend the fourth most on concerts in Asia-Pacific. Filipino concertgoers will be able to continue to embrace and celebrate live performances with the ease, comfort, and enjoyment they deserve if investments are made in the development of contemporary, intelligent, and accessible concert venues. Beyond just providing entertainment, carefully planned, astute, and creative concert venues can boost the national and local economies of the Philippines by stimulating ancillary local spending in the retail, tourism, and hospitality sectors.

SM Prime Embarks on a Unified Waste Management Program for an #SMWasteFreeFuture

Scaled to perfection: One of the first recycling markets the country, Trash-to-Cash’s valuable example that waste can have monetary benefits. The recycling market is held every first Friday and Saturday of the month in all SM Supermalls to encourage waste segregation and recycling among SM customers, tenants, and the community. The recycling market is open from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM.

In response to the mounting waste crisis worldwide, SM Prime Holdings, Inc. (SM Prime), one of the top integrated property developers in Southeast Asia, is starting a unified waste management and segregation campaign. SM Prime aims to bring all its property groups and stakeholders toward an #SMWasteFreeFuture

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) estimates that every year, people produce over 2 billion tons of municipal solid waste, of which 45 percent is improperly managed. In 2050, municipal solid waste will double to nearly 4 billion tons annually if nothing drastic is done. The International Day of Zero Waste was declared on March 30, 2022, by the United Nations General Assembly.

The First International Day of Zero Waste was established by UNEP the following year to support efforts to address the global pollution crisis. It seeks to raise awareness of zero waste and inspire global action. 

Strong foundations 

According to Henry Sy, the company's founder, "business growth and social development must go hand in hand." SM Prime adheres to this philosophy and has developed a sustainability policy that includes commitments to resource efficiency and conservation, disaster resilience, climate advocacy, social integration, and transparent reporting. 

The environmental programs on waste management of the SM Supermalls are anchored on these sustainability commitments. SM Supermalls has spearheaded numerous initiatives, including the Trash to Cash recycling market, and supported various national events, including the annual International Coastal Clean Up, through its corporate social responsibility arm, SM Cares.

The largest haul and biggest participation to-date: The 38th International Coastal Clean-up had 17,000 volunteers across 15 SM Malls in 12 locations nationwide. It is an annual community-driven partnership between SM Supermalls, SM Cares, the DENR, LGU’s and the volunteers from the SM community.

By introducing sustainable practices throughout all of its properties in the Philippines, SM Hotels and Conventions Corporation (SMHCC) has taken the lead in the hotel and tourism industry's efforts to reduce global food waste. One of their main projects is the Sustainable Diner Program of the World Wide Fund for Nature, which aims to change the food service industry and assist in minimizing its environmental impact through resource efficiency, a rejection of plastic, and food waste management while also promoting global food security in the future. 

Closing the loop: SMHCC’s sustainability efforts are anchored on the 7Gs or Seven Green Goals, based on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG). The overall thrust for sustainability is cascaded to the rest of properties, ensuring that it is embedded at every step of the hotel’s operations, ensured by property Sustainability Champions.

Additionally, SM Prime recently announced its waste-to-fuel collaboration with GUUN Co. to support these initiatives. Ltd. (GUNN) to put the Japanese method of lessening the impact of landfills into practice. Packaging that is difficult or impossible to recycle is turned into alternative fuel by this technology. 

No time to waste: Sorting through the amount of trash at the GUUN Facility in Cebu. Unfit for recycling and reuse, the waste material recovered avoids the landfill and is then reconverted to fuel resource.

A Vision for an #SMWasteFreeFuture 

To mark the International Day of Zero Waste on March 30, 2024, SM Prime is releasing its vision for an #SMWasteFreeFuture.

“As a community, we strongly believe in our ability to contribute to solving today's waste issues. We understand that this may seem like a daunting challenge to overcome However, by joining forces, we can create a world that our future generations truly deserve – if we have the courage to take on this journey together. ~Hans “Chico” Sy, Jr., President of SM Engineering Design and Development Corporation (SMEDD) and SM Sustainability Champion

With its announcement of its #SMWasteFreeFuture vision, SM Prime has demonstrated its strong commitment to sustainability stewardship. By inviting its stakeholders to participate in events that will promote zero-waste awareness and push for an environmentally sound and sustainable approach to waste management, the company is demonstrating its commitment to sustainability.

As it continues to create creative and sustainable lifestyle cities, SM Prime is dedicated to its role as an engine for economic growth, improving the lives of millions of people in the process. SM Prime is working to create sustainable cities of the future by exploring the next frontier in integrated property development. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Jobs on the Rise: New Urban Developments Are Driving Employment Growth

Cities worldwide, while diverse in demographics and culture, share a common pursuit of progress through new urban developments. These projects not only enhance convenience amid urban congestion but also stimulate local economies and communities through various socio-economic activities like job creation.

Whether in the form of public transportation, cutting-edge business districts, or towering residential communities, a single new development requires a whole host of jobs from pre-construction, to construction, and completion. These range from real estate developers and planners to construction workers and suppliers – all requiring extensive collaboration for successful project development.

Hudson Yards: Direct and indirect employment opportunities

The cycle of job creation doesn’t stop after completion. A new development also drives indirect employment opportunities generated from industries attracted or related to the development. 

Such is the case for Hudson Yards, New York City’s 28-acre mixed-use development and considerably the United States’ biggest megadevelopment in history. It had created thousands of construction jobs that resulted in transforming Manhattan’s iconic skyline and becoming home to diverse shops, offices, cultural institutions, and hotels and residences. Ongoing operations and management of these facilities are expected to contribute to its large-scale economy, such as hosting over 55,752 workers daily and about $19 billion annually to the city’s GDP. 

Dubai and Songdo IBD: Creating economic opportunities afresh

On the other hand, cities such as Dubai and the Songdo International Business District (IBD) foster employment by establishing economic prospects from scratch. They employ land reclamation as a strategic approach to urban development, aimed at mitigating issues related to land scarcity and increasing population density.

Dubai's ambitious ventures, such as the Palm Islands, the World Islands, and Burj Al Arab, have transformed it into a cutting-edge hub for commerce and tourism. In 2023, it attracted over 30,000 new businesses, fueling demand for skilled professionals in finance, legal, and digital technology sectors.

Meanwhile, the ongoing construction of Songdo IBD, located on reclaimed land in Incheon, South Korea, represents a pioneering smart city initiative. It is envisioned as an international center for both business and residential activities, incorporating sustainable design principles. By 2020, this 1,500-acre development has already accommodated approximately 30,000 residents and created 33,000 jobs, while boasting 70% lower emissions compared to other similar developments.

SM’s Integrated City Developments: Empowering local communities and residents

SM Prime contributed photo. An aerial view of SM Mall of Asia (MOA) featuring its iconic Globamaze and thriving network of retail, business, residential, and hotel developments.

The SM Group, a leading conglomerate in the Philippines, has an ecosystem of interests spanning retail, banking, property, and mall developments across the country, making it the largest employer with over 140,000 employees.

For every SM mall development by SM Prime Holdings, the integrated property developer of the Group, the local economy is invigorated because of the opportunities created by supporting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that comprise about 68% of its mall tenants. For instance, SM City Bataan, SM Supermalls’ 83rd mall, employs about 96% of its mall administration staff who are residents called Bataeños, including two in leadership roles. It also proudly showcases local industries by partnering with homegrown businesses like family-owned brands and locally managed franchises. 

Ensuring job stability, steady incomes, and tax contributions enhances the quality of life for the local workforce, a commitment SM Prime upholds in its developments. This dedication is particularly evident in its future endeavors, including the advancement of smart cities in the Philippines, spearheaded by its ongoing 360-hectare project in Pasay City.

Emerging urban developments serve as catalysts for growth and innovation, fostering increased prosperity and shaping local economies by generating employment opportunities and enhancing livelihoods. The success of these urban hubs relies on a network of opportunities, spanning from pre-construction supply chains to empowering businesses, enabling individuals to thrive and make meaningful contributions to their communities.

Jollibee Foods Corporation Mounts Employee-led Mangrove Reforestation Project

Protecting shorelines . Last year, 212 employee volunteers participated in a string of tree-planting activities. The photo shows some Jollib...