Business role in PH economic growth, nation-building hailed in Asia CEO Awards
THE sixth edition of the Asia CEO Awards has recognized not only the excellence of businesses in their respective fields, but also their contribution to the country’s economic progress, regional growth, and community development.
Noting that the Philippines has become one of the fastest growing economies in Asia, Jovy Hernandez, sales and marketing head of Smart Enterprise, said businesses should also be acknowledged for “helping display the Filipino talent” in the areas of education, health, environment, nation-building, and good governance, among others.
“Every year, the awards bring together top business leaders to celebrate the best of the best in business,” Hernandez said during the awarding ceremonies at the Marriott Hotel Manila in Pasay City on Thursday night.
“With the world’s eyes in the Philippines for the Apec (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) summit and in light of the ongoing Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) regional integration, tonight we celebrate and underscore the Philippine status as global player,” he said.
Dr. Bernie Villegas, economist and author from the University of Asia and the Pacific and a member of the board of judges, said what sets a company apart from equally excellent businesses is the amount of “heart” that it pours out.
“We are so impressed with the quantity and quality of entries that pour in year in and year out,” Villegas said. “In this six year journey, we have witnessed the Philippines transitioning from the sick man of Asia to the new Asian tiger.”
Construction industry pioneer David Consunji, chairman of DMCI Holdings, was conferred the Lifetime Contributor award for the private sector. Consunji once served as secretary of the Department of Public Works and Highways.
Meanwhile, ambassador Jose Cuisia Jr., Philippine envoy to the United States, received the Lifetime Contributor award for the public sector. He also served as president and CEO of PhilAm Life.
“There’s no place for mediocrity when one is given so much opportunity,” Cuisia said in his speech after accepting his trophy.
“A leader must always have a vision for an organization,” he added.
Raymond Abrea, president and CEO Abrea Consulting Group Inc., drew cheers from the corporate crowd when he pitched tax reform after accepting his award as Young Leader of the Year.
“By winning this award, I hope we will get the attention of the President and our lawmakers that we really have to give it a try,” Abrea said.
Filipino-Chinese billionaire Andrew Tan, chairman of Alliance Global Group Inc., was hailed as Global Filipino Executive of the Year. The award is given to a Filipino citizen who “achieved recognizable success in the Philippines or outside of it.”
Tan, who owns Megaworld Corporation, Emperador Distilleries, and Golden Arches Development Corporation, bested other finalists in the category, namely Security Bank Chairman Albert Villarosa, BCDA President and CEO Arnel Casanova, IMI President and CEO Arthur Tan, Clark Development President and CEO Arthur Tugade, PAG-IBIG Fund President and CEO Darlene Berberabe, Robinsons Land Corporation President Frederick Go, Land Bank of the Philippines President and CEO Gilda Pico, Magsaysay Maritime Corporation President Marlon Rono, Meralco President and CEO Oscar Reyes, and Sun Life of Canada (Philippines) President and CEO Riza Mantaring.
Other award recipients were Marriott Hotel Manila (Philippine Airlines Hospitality Destination of the Year), Ecosystems Technology Inc. (Technology Company of the Year), Aski Global Ltd. (Heart for OFWs Company of the Year), My-Checkpoints (Most Innovative Company of the Year), Cognizant Technology Solutions (Service Excellence Company of the Year), PMFT Inc. (CSR Company of the Year), WIPRO Philippines (Asean Company of the Year), Royal Cargo CEO Michael Raeuber (Expatriate Executive of the Year), ANZ (Global Top Employer of the Year), and Clark Development Corporation (Executive Leadership Team of the Year).
The Asia CEO Awards, the largest business awards in the Philippines and one of the largest of its kind in Asia-Pacific, was presented by PLDT-Alpha Enterprise.
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